Friday, June 17, 2016

Thoughts on Topps 2016 Series One Inserts

When I printed the checklist for Topps 2016 Series One baseball cards and seventeen pages spat out I was flummoxed. Especially because I knew the base set had 350 cards. The base set takes up just over four pages. That leaves about 12 pages of inserts, which is:

A. Ludicrous
B. Waste of paper
C. Obscene
D. Dumb
E. Abusive
F. All of the above

I choose "F. All of the above". (To add to my flummoxed-ness, I recently printed the checklist for Series Two which is even more: 29 pages.) But I'm perhaps old and miserly. Out of touch with the collecting hobby or intimidated by the volume. I know I know...everyone has an opinion. And, I know I know, opinions are like assholes: everyone has them and most of them stink...

When I collected as a kid, we had the rack packs with the glossy All-Star insert and that was fun and cool. There were also glossy All-Star cards you could send in for. Also, fine. Cool. They were for the players playing at the time. I feel like this is an important distinction. Of course there was the Turn Back the Clock subset in the Topps sets from 1977, and then from 1986 through 1990. These sets at this time also included Record Breakers, All-Stars, League and Team Leaders, and others. But the difference is of course that these cards were a part of the base set.

Perhaps I am a hypocrite, though? In the heyday of my collecting, circa 1987, there were a ton of sets produced and I imagine I collected as much and as many as I could of the players I liked best. If you compare sets produced in 1987 linked just above to 1988, it's like an invasive weed spread over the hobby. Perhaps if I maintained collecting rather than abandoning it, I would feel differently? And perhaps if I get more and more into baseball card collecting (sets and players), a bit of the 'bug' might get into me and I'll gain an understanding and appreciation for them. But my initial feeling about the vast quantity of inserts is one of being underwhelmed, overwhelmed and unimpressed. Especially the "First Pitch".

I've added a list of those inserts that I have that are free for the trading and am providing some images below. The Ozzie Smith in the first image below is spoken for.

Berger's Best and Perspectives

Back-to-Back, Wrigley 100 Years, and Amazing Milestones

MLB Debut

Walk Off Wins and First Pitch

I've started opening some Topps Series 2 baseball cards, so any inserts I get will be posted probably by Monday or Tuesday.

Thanks for stopping by.


  1. It's not just you. Trust me. If you go back and read my posts from 2014 about buying unopened packs, you'll read about a lot of frustration. Too many inserts. Too many parallels. Too many damn Yankees in every stupid set that isn't the flagship. Too much laziness from Topps generally.

    I got past that and dove headlong into collecting Brewers cards and PCs. Basically, I view Topps releasing new cards as sort of a necessary evil for my collection. I'll take what they put in the sets of my team, I'll try to collect the inserts that are more common for both team and player collections, and anything I deem too difficult to chase too much either gets ignored completely or I get them only for PCs.

    I keep reminding myself: collect what you want. Ignore the rest. Getting to that zen place isn't easy, and I'm not always there. But this is a hobby and it's supposed to be fun. If parts of it get you down, then, as you're doing, get rid of those parts.

  2. Hi Tony! These are sound words of advice that I'll refer to from time to time. I am also going to hurtle back in time to your 2014 posts because I'd like to read about your experiences in this venture. I guess the advantage for now is that I can ignore just about everything they put out and concentrate on my Strawberry cards and just wait to see what they exploit, I mean what they put out next year.