Friday, November 6, 2015

The Beautiful Cards of 2015 Topps Chrome Update

Perusing through the card aisle in Target last night, I found that these "Holiday Mega Boxes" are back for 2015.  Five packs of 2015 Topps Update Series, plus two exclusive bonus packs of 2015 Topps Chrome Update for $14.99.  Obviously I was intrigued enough to pick one up.

We'll get to the Chrome Update cards in a minute, but first a few highlights from the five individual retail packs of Update Series.  At 8 cards a pack, I got 40 in all...

Of course the big name rookies are in the set.  The All-Star subset is less than exciting to me, as is the case every year, but at least on this Joc Pederson we don't have to see an obnoxious horizontally-striped hat.

The Rookie Debut subset, on the other hand, is one I look forward to every year.  I really like the concept of a card dedicated to a player's first MLB game, in fact I wish Topps would produce an entire set like this every year featuring a card for every single player who makes his debut that season. 

Combine my love of this concept with the great photograph, and the fact that Correa is one of my favorite young players, and this proved to be one of my favorite cards in the entire box.

Count me among the many that thought there was a snowball's chance in hell that A-Rod would have another season like the one he just did.  He really seemed to have a great team attitude as well, and said all the right things.  The cynical side of me wants to say it was an act, but if I'm being honest Alex doesn't bother me nearly as much as he did a year or two ago.

I really got lucky with my inserts, which I generally detest.  I'd only picked up one rack pack of Update Series prior to this, and that one yielded two Red Sox inserts (a Whatever Works Napoli and a Rookie Sensations Garciaparra).  This time around I pulled another that I actually want to keep with this David Ortiz.

Todd Frazier hometown All-Star game cameo!

Love Sogard's glasses, reminds me of some of the great specs found on '50s and '60s cards.

I'm keeping all of the base cards since I'm going to try and build the set, as well as any Red Sox inserts.  The other inserts/parallels are trade material as far as I'm concerned, and I did pretty well on that front in this box too.  This Gooden will be in my next PWE for Mark Kaz...

...and I know more than a couple of Cubs fans I could ship this Dan Haren foil parallel off to.

The one Gold parallel I pulled (#'d /2015) was at least a World Series champ.  This one will be headed to the trade box, or maybe to COMC.

The Update Series packs were fun and all, but what I was most interested in were the Chrome Update cards, given that I had no idea these were coming out at all.  They did not disappoint!

Like with standard Topps Chrome packs, you get just four cards, so just eight of these total at two packs per box.  I peeled back the foil on my first pack, flipped the cards over, and was blown away.  Check these out!

I assure you that these look every bit as cool in person as they do in the scans.  If you're a fan of shiny cards you need to find an excuse to hit up Wal-Mart or Target tonight!  These are retail-exclusive, so you won't find them at your local hobby shop.

As a comparison, here's the Joey Gallo from the standard set...

...and here's the Chrome Update version.  These are definitely not your standard Topps Chrome cards!  My one complaint is that only fifty cards were selected to get this Chrome treatment, and they're from all over the checklist.  You can get a list of all fifty as well as other checklist info over at Cardboard Connection.

I fully plan on collecting the entire 50-card set, these will look fantastic in a binder.  There are inserts with this same card stock/refractor pattern as well, and parallels (gold and black, both serial-numbered).

My first pack of four yielded just four standard cards off of the checklist, which is fine by me since I'll be trying to get them all.

I was hoping the second pack would yield something a bit more exciting, like the Carlos Correa or Kris Bryant rookies, or perhaps a Red Sox card.  It did not disappoint.

A pretty solid rookie to lead off the pack...

...but as a Red Sox fan it got much better after that.  Porcello stunk it up this year, but this is a beautiful card regardless.  There are four Red Sox out of the fifty cards in the set, nice to knock one out in the early going.

This last card pretty much made the box for me.  It didn't scan as well, but this Rookie Sensations Ted Williams insert has the same refractor treatment as the other Chrome Update cards, and it looks stunning.  You really couldn't ask for a better box than this as a Red Sox fan.

I have to say that Topps has really stepped up their game this year in my opinion.  I love what they did with the flagship set, Stadium Club was a huge success, and Update Series is more interesting than I remember it being in years.  These Chrome Update cards might be the nicest looking of them all, though.
Oh yeah, I nearly forgot to show you the best card from the entire box:

This great shot of Addison Russell signing some pre-game autographs is a short-printed photo variation.  I believe these fall at 1:46 packs, so with just five packs of Update Series in the box this was a pretty nice pull.

For $15, I thoroughly enjoyed opening this box.  I have no buyer's remorse whatsoever, and in fact I plan on picking up at least one or two more of them.  Job well done Topps!


Hackenbush said...

I don't know if it's the cards themselves or your enthusiasm but it almost makes me want to buy some. The chrome do look cool.

defgav said...

I'm dying to check out those sparkly chrome cards in person.. Gotta hit Target this weekend!

Tim B. said...

I picked up one of those the other day too! My write up should be coming in the next few days. I too love those Chrome update cards. I really want to work on the set too, but it's going to be really tough to complete. Congrats on the great Sox box.

Adam Kaningher said...

Wow, those look amazing! Interesting choice of Rockies in just a 50-card set.

Mark Kaz said...

Wow!! It's funny, I just found out about these Mega Boxes while putzing around on eBay this evening, and now I see your well-constructed post about them. You kicked ass in terms of additions to your Sox collection. And, what is it with you and big Cubs 'hits' this year? Anyhow, I can't wait to find one of these! To think, I was in Target this morning and found nada! I guess me and Gabriel will be making a trip to Wal-Mart tomorrow morning!!!

Anonymous said...

Before I read your post, I was wondering if I should buy one or two of those mega boxes... Now I know I will. Cool stuff abounds.

FWIW, Topps did do a "Major League Debut" box set for a couple of years in the early 1990's... Every player who made his debut that year. I bought a 1990 set -- well, a 1990 design featuring guys who debuted in 1989 -- but I skipped the following two sets. I recently bought a repack which had a card from that one set I own... Stu Tate of the Giants. I think that was the problem with the set, for every Jim Abbott or Frank Thomas, there were 10 Stu Tates.

Nick said...

Those Chromies are, to put it simply, stunning. May have to get me a box just for those. (P.S. Keep me in mind for that Haren if it's not already off to another Cubs fan!)

Lonestarr said...

So pretteh.

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