Thursday, January 30, 2014

Thank you!

I've just put the finishing touches on the first four "real" posts and I just wanted to say thanks to those who have shown an early interest and support of this idea. Look for the first card, Friday morning at 9 AM EST.

The contest will also end at that time and I'll tabulate all of the blog and twitter followers and pimpage and do a special Sunday post to announce the winner. Right now, the blog stands at 15 followers so the inserts will definitely be given away. We'll see if I can reach the threshold to include the unopened manu patch pack.

Before I break down 990+ cards over the next 11 months, I thought I'd give my thoughts on the set as a whole. And remember this is just about the base set.

I follow a lot of blogs and have been eagerly reading all of the early reviews of this set I can find. To put it nicely, they've been mixed, but from what I've seen, the opinions lean more towards apathy than dislike.

This blog won't change any of those opinions because though I'm covering the set as a whole, the purpose is to celebrate what's different about each card in the set, from photo selection, to the blurbs, to the random rookie fact on the back of each card (one of the highlights of the set for me) and more.

It's different enough from previous releases, yet recognizable as something from the Topps brand. And I realize that's is part of the complaints it has received, but personally, I'm good with it. And I'm not just saying that because I'm pimping a blog I just dedicated the next year to writing. Everybody has the nostalgic sets from their youth that they compare current releases with and those childhood memories are hard to live up to.

The fronts are not overly cluttered, unless you have a ridiculously long name, but still have all of the components it should. Obviously a photo, the player name, team name and a team logo but they've also gone back to :including the position. And one of the best things about it, is they are scannable! Aside from the cards with the Future Stars logo, every other part comes out completely legible.

The backs are similar to previous years but have the wave to tie it into the front design. If you've seen my customs card over on my other blog, Once a Cub, you'll know I'm a big fan of simple. And as I mentioned above, I'm a big fan of the rookie facts on the back in addition to the blurb. Much more personalized than the generic milestones from last year. Really? A rookie pitcher is only 5700 strikeouts away from Nolan Ryan's stirkeout record? Or 4100 hits away from the "anonymous" hits record holder?

I don't know if they planned on doing the opposite of last year (milestones vs. future) or if they're trying to move past the steroid era, but a big part of the set seems to focused on the young guys and the future. The Future Stars subset is making a comeback with 15 cards (and at least another with Puig as an SP) and their are 35 cards with the Rookie Card logo. There's and insert set called The Future is Now, and another that focuses on draft picks. With a couple of big name stars retiring and getting tribute cards and a lot of the veterans assumed or actually guilty of being involved in the steroid era, it's probably good to focus on some of these younger guys coming up.

With all that said, I know the saying is that you can't see the forest for the trees, but for the sake of this blog, please take some time to see some of the wonderful trees in this forest you might already be apathetic towards one week into its release.

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