Sunday, March 18, 2012

Obligatory Topps Heritage Blaster

Alright, so I broke down and bought my first packs of any kind so far in 2012. I've just had an itch to open a few packs, and since they had Topps Heritage baseball blasters at Target when I stopped off for a few things, I scratched. Eight packs, nine cards per pack. Here's my entire blaster, card by card...

Pack 1

#339 - Guillermo Moscoso

Right out of the gate we have a theme that will be common throughout this box, and that is "who the hell is this guy?". Clearly I need to watch more baseball games in which the Red Sox are not participating in 2012, because I seriously don't know who half of these guys are. Here's a look at an original '63 Topps card for comparison's sake:

As you can see, the design on the fronts is pretty much identical other than the added Topps Heritage logo on the new cards.

The backs are a good representation of the originals as well:

#263 - Tyler Clippard

#149 - Ian Desmond

Great, a Colorado Rockie and two Washington Nationals to start my box. What more could I ask for? One thing I do appreciate is the attention to detail that goes into the checklist for this set. The card numbers of the last two Nationals cards were both Washington Senators cards in the '63 set.

#43 - Veteran Masters

The original #43 - Veteran Masters card from the '63 set features Casey Stengel and Gene Woodling of the Mets. I'd rather have that one.

#318 - Charlie Manuel

Card #318 in the '63 set is also the Phillies Manager, Gene Mauch.

#261 - Javy Guerra

Card #261 from the original set is also a Dodgers pitcher. You get the point...

Stick-Ons #32 - Felix Hernandez

These mimic the 1963 Topps Peel-Off inserts. Felix here is up for trade, I don't have any interest in this insert set.

#167 - Erick Aybar

#338 - Brandon McCarthy

The first pack was a pretty good indication of how this break is going to go. Nice card stock, great job replicating the 1963 design, but nothing really too spectacular.

Pack 2

#390 - Jason Heyward

Love the cartoon on this one. Can J-Hey make it three seasons in a row? I guess we'll find out in a couple of weeks here. Also of note, Heyward gets card #390, which was Hank Aaron's in the '63 set.

#156 - Yuniesky Betancourt

#189 - Wilton Lopez

#3 - NL Home Run Leaders

Interesting card just because it's got two of the top free agents from this past off-season with their former teams.

#191 - Rookie Stars

At least I've heard of Matt Moore. Card #191 was a checklist in the original set. More on that later.

#279 - Matt Kemp

I thought this was one of the nicer looking cards to come out of this box. Card #279 in the '63 set featured Wally Moon's fantastic eyebrow.

#430 - Ben Zobrist (SP)

I believe the SPs are seeded 1:3 packs.

#123 - Andre Ethier

Frank Howard had card #123 in the 1963 set. Kemp and Ethier, this pack was supposed to be opened by Night Owl.

#356 - Adrian Beltre

That was definitely an improvement over pack 1. This was probably the best pack in the box in terms of star power.

Pack 3

#325 - Brian Wilson

#212 - Carlos Marmol

#362 - Rookie Stars

#293 - Tim Stauffer

#145 - World Series Game 4

I like that these feature the box score for the game on the back:

Of course, there are no pitching stats even though this card pays tribute to Holland's masterful performance...

#260 - Anthony Rizzo (Red Parallel)

I'm not sure if these red parallels are Target exclusive or something that's in all packs. I didn't see anything on the wrapper about them. In any event, Rizzo was an interesting one for me to pull because he was a Red Sox draft pick and played in their farm system for a few years before being dealt to San Diego as part of the Adrian Gonzalez acquisition. Anthony's also a survivor of Hodgkin's lymphoma, so he's an easy guy to root for.

#23 - Ned Yost

#275 - Dan Uggla

#275 belongs to Eddie Mathews in the 1963 set.

#174 - Jose Reyes

Interesting to pull a Reyes sporting his new Miami Marlins garb.

Pack 4

#421 - Kyle Farnsworth

#416 - Stephen Drew

#154 - Don Mattingly

As a child of the '80s I always liked Mattingly, so I was happy to pull this one.

#238 - Jose Constanza

#204 - Chris Schwinden (RC)

#48 - Manny Acta

#NF-MKI - Martin Luther King, Jr. News Flashbacks

Can't complain about pulling a Martin Luther King. I see how an insert set featuring historical events of 1963 makes sense, but I won't be collecting it so Martin's available if anyone needs this card.

#52 - Dustin Pedroia

Finally, a Red Sox card. I was hoping to pull a few of these, but Dustin here was all I got.

#57 - Howie Kendrick

Pack 5

#307 - J.J. Putz

#365 - Jose Valverde

#269 - Justin Morneau

#393 - Clint Hurdle

#262 - J.D. Martinez

#119 - Matt Downs

#485 - Mike Napoli (SP)

#322 - Ervin Santana

#327 - Rick Porcello

Pack 6

#330 - Jorge Posada

#35 - Chris Sale

#208 - Rookie Stars

#283 - Brad Lidge

#419 - Casey Janssen

This one is in a pile headed to 1967ers...

#HP60 - Tim Hudson Chrome (#'d/1963)

No interest in keeping this one...

#13 - Philadelphia Phillies

#141 - Carlos Lee

#100 - Paul Konerko

Let's face it, that pack kind of sucked.

Pack 7

#31 - Jeff Samardzija

#236 - Salvador Perez

#410 - Jesus Guzman

#125 - Ron Gardenhire

#223 - Addison Reed (RC)

No idea who this guy is.

#BF-SK - Sandy Koufax Baseball Flashbacks

Nice looking insert, but I'd trade this one away as well.

#203 - Scott Rolen

#140 - Max Scherzer

#282 - Jeff Francoeur

#C2 - Checklist

Rather than including the cards as part of the base set, as was done with the original '63 set, Topps numbered the checklists C1, C2, etc. I was disappointed to find that the checklist cards are not produced on the same card stock as the base set. They are flimsier and glossy. At least this one didn't count as one of my nine cards in this pack.

Pack 8

#169 - Rookie Stars

#253 - Rookie Stars

I have heard of only one of the eight men featured on these last two rookie stars cards.

#336 - Fernando Salas

#108 - Vladimir Guerrero

#6 - AL ERA Leaders

I guess I can count this is a second Red Sox card due to Josh Beckett's floating head.

#207 - Mike Trout

#438 - Juan Nicasio (SP)

Well at least I beat the odds and got 3 short prints in my blaster.

#200 - Curtis Granderson

#200 in the '63 set was none other than Mickey Mantle. Odds are I'll never own one of those in my lifetime.

#301 - Gio Gonzalez

Well that's about it. I have to say that I enjoyed opening these, but I highly doubt I'm going to bother collecting the set. The 75 short prints alone is enough reason for me to stay away. I'll probably head back to focusing on vintage for a while, but I could see grabbing another few packs of this when I'm in the mood for opening some wax...


night owl said...

I pulled Youkilis and Andrew Bailey, as well as a blue-border Jon Lester (yes, the red borders are Targets and blue border Wal-Marts). If I throw in a couple 2012 Opening Day Red Sox inserts, will you trade your Heritage Dodgers?

Justin McLeod said...

I need McCarthy, Schwinden, and Constanza... trade?

1967ers said...

I never got around to buying Heritage last year despite promising myself I would. These look pretty cool and I think I will get some. Our Walmarts are still flogging two-year-old hockey, though.

cynicalbuddha said...

Greg's right about the exclusive borders. However the entire set isn't paralleled only certain players and it's different players in red and blue.

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