Card of the Day: 2019 Topps Opening Day Phillie Phanatic Mascot #21

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Card of the Day: Yusei Kikuchi 2019 Topps Opening Day #55

Grand Opening – Sports Zone Toys & Comics

Sports Zone Toys & Comics is a card shop that’s been around for over ten years.  The shop recently moved into a new location – 359 Market St., Sunbury, PA.

I attended it’s grand opening this weekend.  Let me tell you something.  This is how every single brick-and-mortar store should look.  Its easy to get into, lots of space to move around, and very well organized.  Every collector should have this type of shop in their backyard.

Glass cases full of singles, sealed boxes, packs, OYO minifigures, bobbleheads, and new/used wrestling figures just cover some of the items you’ll find.  There are even some tables you can sit down at and rip open a box.  I highly suggest stopping in if you’re around the area.

To commemorate the grand opening, special OYO minifigures were made with the Sports Zone Toys & Comics name on them.  Along with the minifigure came a coupon.  These coupons ranged from $10 off of a $100 purchase, free bobblehead, free Fathead, etc…  Very cool!

I left with a new Nick Foles Super Bowl LII MVP bobblehead, and a Phillies TeenyMates Big Sip water bottle.  Next month I’ll be heading back as that’s when the Gritty bobbleheads are due out.

Unboxing The 2018 Topps NOW Philadelphia Phillies Road To Opening Day Team Set

And now I’d like to show off the newest addition to my collection.  Take a look at my 2018 Topps NOW Philadelphia Phillies Road To Opening Day Team Set.  I think the Topps NOW cards get better looking every year.  Not only do they look good, but they feel nice too.  The cards are printed on thicker than normal stock.  Both the front and back have a clear coating as well.  Probably my favorite feature new for 2018 is the hologram backs.  All card backs have this Topps hologram printed on them.  It doesn’t stand out that much.  In fact, the only way you’ll see it is if you rotate the card just so the light hits it correctly.  Almost like how a basic refractor works.

According to Topps, (411) copies of this set were printed.  That’s a lot more than what I was expecting.  Some sets didn’t even crack (100).  The Phillies do have a lot of young talent, and those rookies most likely increased the demand.

I like these cards so much, I might go for the autographed version next year.  On a side note, after all of my tweets, Topps decided to make a Topps NOW card to commemorate the Phillie Phanatic’s 40th birthday.  Boomer and Swoop even made it in the picture.

2018 Topps Opening Day Box Break & Review

I’m ready for baseball season to start.  As a Phillies fan I’m excited to see how their new manager Gabe Kapler works out.  The team is packed with a lot of young talent.  All of this excitement got me to pull the trigger on a 2018 Topps NOW Phillies Road To Opening Day Team Set.  I even bought a Rhys Hoskins card from the new Topps Living Set.  Those 1953 Topps paintings are awesome!

Opening Day is a brand that’s been around since 2000.  Its one of the most affordable products that Topps makes.  I’d say that its one step above their MLB Sticker Collection.  With that being said, its difficult to pull an autograph and/or relic from a single box.  Oh they’re in there, but you can’t open a box with just those in mind.  Items like that aren’t guaranteed per box with a product like this.

2018 Topps Opening Day consists of a 200-card set.  It features the same design as it’s flagship counterpart.  I’m still a big fan of that pixelated-look with the big gummy candy wave.  Its one of their better modern day card designs.  Parallels include Blue Foil, Opening Day Edition #’ed 1/1, and Printing Plates #’ed 1/1.

Photo variations are harder to pull when compared to last year’s Opening Day set.  Base card CMP codes end in #77, whereas the photo variations end in #95.  Many of these are easy to spot without having to check the code, because the photos Topps used are so drastically different when placed side-by-side to the base.  “Celebrating” looks to be the overall theme to most of the variations.

Although he didn’t have the best Spring Training, Shohei Ohtani cards continue to be quite popular.  Opening Day offers one of his most affordable rookies right now.  You should pull at least one from a hobby box.

Inserts are a big part of Opening Day.  Every single pack has one.  Rarer inserts include National Anthem (1:286), Stadium Signatures (1:572), and Dugout Peeks (1:1,791).  Other inserts include Before Opening Day, Mascots, MLB Sticker Collection, Opening Day Stadium, Opening Day Stars, and Team Traditions & Celebrations.

Diamond Relics offer cards featuring game-used ballpark dirt.  I think these look way better than the ballpark dirt relics that Topps issued in 2001 Stadium Club.  The colors are richer, design is nicer, and they contain much more dirt.

Over the years I’ve opened four boxes of Opening Day.  Three out of four have had something (relic, printing plate, photo variation, rare insert).  You can’t beat the price for a hobby box, $30.  I’m still holding out that we’ll see some pixelated artwork one of these days.

Here is what I pulled:

Parallels

  • Nolan Arenado Blue Foil
  • Bryce Harper Blue Foil
  • Josh Donaldson Blue Foil
  • Zack Greinke Blue Foil
  • Carlos Correa Blue Foil

Inserts

  • Alex Bregman National Anthem
  • Chance Sisco Opening Day Stars
  • Chris Sale Before Opening Day
  • Chris Davis Before Opening Day
  • Christian Vazquez Before Opening Day
  • Kris Bryant Before Opening Day
  • Cody Bellinger Before Opening Day
  • Bryce Harper Before Opening Day
  • Andrew Benintendi Before Opening Day
  • Yasiel Puig Before Opening Day
  • St. Louis Cardinals Opening Day Stadium
  • Tampa Bay Rays Opening Day Stadium
  • Boston Red Sox Opening Day Stadium
  • Chicago Cubs Opening Day Stadium
  • Texas Rangers Opening Day Stadium
  • Detroit Tigers Opening Day Stadium
  • Los Angeles Dodgers Opening Day Stadium
  • The Freeze Team Traditions & Celebrations
  • “Sweet Caroline” Team Traditions & Celebrations
  • Clydesdale Horses Team Traditions & Celebrations
  • Minnie And Paul Sign Team Traditions & Celebrations
  • “Y.M.C.A.” Dance Team Traditions & Celebrations
  • Rally Monkey Team Traditions & Celebrations
  • Home Run Slide Team Traditions & Celebrations
  • King’s Court Team Traditions & Celebrations
  • McCovey Cove Team Traditions & Celebrations
  • Opening Day Parade Team Traditions & Celebrations
  • Raymond Mascots
  • Swinging Friar Mascots
  • Billy The Marlin Mascots
  • Dinger Mascots
  • Gapper Mascots
  • Tessie Mascots
  • Paws Mascots
  • Rosie Red Mascots
  • Mr. Met Mascots
  • TC Bear Mascots
  • Sluggerr Mascots

Notable Rookies

  • (2) Shohei Ohtani
  • Rhys Hoskins

Card of the Day: 2011 Topps Opening Day Geoffrey Toys “R” Us Boston Red Sox #2

Card of the Day: 2018 Topps Opening Day Phillie Phanatic Mascots #18