Skip navigation

Tag Archives: Hall of Famers

Not that I’m one to argue about the validity of “book value,” nor do I really delve often into the motivation of “prospectors,” but this just strikes me as odd.

This card, of Mets minor leaguer Ike Davis (I won’t even bother to call him a prospect, given the remote chances of somebody actually making it to the bigs) which I pulled from a pack of 08 Bowman Draft, has a book value of $120.

This card, of Hall of Fame 3rd baseman Eddie Matthews, which I pulled from a pack of 08 Donruss Threads, has a book value of $20. That’s a $100 difference in “value.”

As I’ve said many times, I’m not the sort of collector who chases the hits. I’m not buying cases of BDPP in hopes of scoring refractor autos. But hey, if I happen to find one, sweet. And if one of these refractor autos can be flipped for something I really want, even sweeter.

It’s just kind of crazy to me that the artificial scarcity of “hits” is the more prevalent factor in the pricing structure here, rather than a player’s reputation/track record.

Advertisements

24 packs, 5 cards per pack
Retail price paid: $83

Base set completion: 98 of 100 (98%)
Insert/parallel set completion: Not even close!
Base doubles: 8, out of 120 total cards in the box.

“Hits”

Diamond Kings DK-48 Stan Musial AU 22/25
Baseball Americana BA-47 Eddie Matthews GU 91/100
Autographed Rookies 132 Engel Beltre AU 96/465
Autographed Rookies 137 Brian Friday AU 1107/1249
Autographed Silver Rookie 87 Yefri Carvajal AU 154/999
Silver Century Proof 2 Dale Murphy 63/100
Green Century Proof 100 Elvis Andrus 20/100
Baseball Americana BA-8 Ernie Banks 219/500
Century Legends CL-14 Pete Rose
Century Stars CS-1 Carlton Fisk
College Greats CG-11 Steve Garvey
College Greats CG-12 Fred Lynn
Diamond Kings Framed Red DK-29 Bobby Doer 44/100
Diamond Kings Silver DK-52 Gordon Beckham 8/250
Diamond Kings DK-36 Pete Rose
Diamond Kings DK-37 George Kell

Impressions:

A current hobby box producing 98% of a base set? See, I knew it was still possible. The manufacturers have merely been lazy, or worse yet, indifferent to this concept. So when a hobby box produces this much of a base set, I am definitely happy.

The cards themselves are what 08 SP Authentic could be if UD’s designers put a little more effort into it. Sure, there’s a white background, but it’s mostly filled, with a sepia-toned (for the HOFers) or full-color photo background shadow that fades to white. Love the thicker card stock as well.

The team names are missing from the cards — only the teams’  home cities are listed. I’m guessing this is part of the lack of MLB/MLBPA licensing for Donruss. In many instances, team names/logos in the photos are obscured as well. This technicality must’ve forced Donruss to use many less-than-ideal side view and profile shots for these cards. I do hope MLB/MLBPA grants Donruss a license again, as the lack of logos/team names does take away from what is otherwise a beautiful card.

I wasn’t intending on buying a box, but I couldn’t stay away knowing how many HOFers/retired stars are featured in this set. And I certainly can’t complain about the Dodger inclusion here. Obvious subjects such as Don Sutton, Duke Snider, and Steve Garvey are in, as well as not-so-obvious subjects such as Carl Erskine and Double-A Jacksonville slugger Andrew Lambo — and I suppose you can add Eddie Murray (depicted in an Oriole jersey), Kirk Gibson (Tigers), and Don Mattingly (Yankees) to the list of “Dodgers.”

As weird as it is to think of Don Mattingly as a Dodger, it’s still nowhere near as bad as it was thinking of JACK CLARK as a Dodger.

Anyway, back to the cards. Given that Elite Extra Edition is going to be out soon, I’m not really all that thrilled with the inclusion of 50 minor leaguers in the set. Don’t get me wrong — I love minor league cards. I’ll be buying a box of 08 TriStar Prospects Plus, and I’ll probably grab more than a few packs of Bowman Draft and Razor’s first offering into the minor league card market. But it seems really odd to find cards of Madison Bumgarner and Carlos Carrasco in the same pack as Willie Mays and Mike Schmidt. I don’t buy that Donruss needed the extra subjects to fill a 100-card base set. They could’ve easily filled it out with more HOFers/retired stars. I mean, just look at 05 UD Classics. No need for prospects there!

If they HAD to do prospects, I would’ve preferred this year’s draftees. Then again, with so many of them signed exclusively to Razor, there wouldn’t have been many to go around. So it makes more sense to fill the checklist with more HOFers and retired stars.

Still, in spite of the quips I had about this set, it’s one of my favorites for the year. It also doesn’t hurt that I pulled nearly an entire base set, a load of good inserts, and two HOF auto/gamers.

28 packs per box, 8 cards per pack

Base set completion: 100 of 100 (two base sets completed)
Short print set completion: 7 of 30 (23%)

“Hits”
Classic Seasons Materials (1:14) Jim Rice 
Classic Materials (1:14) Bill Russell
League Leaders Signatures (1:28) Kevin Mitchell
Classic Moments (1:7) Kirk Gibson 1165/1999
Classic Seasons (1:7) Carl Yastrzemski 1716/1999
League Leaders Keith Hernandez (1:7) 130/999

Silver Parallels (1:7)
4 Babe Herman 77/399
15 Brooks Robinson 56/399
57 Johnny Mize 39/399
109 Dennis Eckersley RSR 114/399
110 Don Mattingly RSR 310/399

Platinum Parallels (1:7)
128 Tony Gwynn 1/25

Impressions
In a way, this set make me think of a value version of Legendary Cuts. Lots of HOFers, retired stars, and even Negro League players.

As for the collation, I’m impressed. I haven’t opened a single box that produced not just one whole base set, but two. As I was ripping packs, I was admittedly frustrated that the last few packs produced so many doubles. And as started sorting, it became quickly clear why that was — two whole base sets were produced. I’ll be honest — though a second complete base set is cool, I’d rather have the rest of the SPs, or more of the inserts/hits.

Nonetheless, SPs or not, this is what I wish Topps and UD would get back to. A box FULL of cards (224 of them, to be exact) making it easy to hand collate a base set. Not to mention the SPs are actually worth chasing after, and not ridiculously seeded (1:4).  No more relentlessly and pointlessly short-printing cards of 4A washouts and scrubs!

Once again, given the economy, it’s nice to get a box with this much value. 13 hits including two GU and one AU is great considering how stingy the companies are these days. The GU/AU fell in exactly the same seeding as advertised. From the looks of it, I should’ve received one more insert, but I won’t complain. Just look at the parallels I ended up with. I should’ve had four, but ended up with six. I can’t stand parallels, so those are going straight to the trade box. Still, it doesn’t hurt to add that many HOFers and numbered cards to my trade box!

Given the price I paid for this box relative to other boxes I’ve bought, it’s insane how much more came from this one. One would think that the boxes would be more value-filled today, but that sadly isn’t the case. I can only hope that Topps and UD go back to this sort of game plan.