Monday, January 10, 2011

Looking ahead

So with the first Topps product a little more than a month away, I have begun thinking what to collect in 2011.
I remember thinking last spring, that I was going to be all aboard the USS 2010 Flagship, that I was going to complete the set and maybe tackle the SP variations. But, after I busted a hobby box, the design just didn't wow me. As an art director (graphic designer), seeing this recycled design really put me off. Really?  Really? Topps? What were you thinking? You were the only kid on the block now and you're gonna go with this retread?

I just felt it was a significant let down from the 2009 set. The one redeeming aspect was the Topps Million promotion. I felt that was a good way to keep the collector interested in your product the whole year and it allowed collectors to interact with other collectors.

So with that in mind, I find myself a little wary of the upcoming release of 2011 Topps Baseball.  So far, it's got my interest with the design, a far cry from what was thrown against the wall last year. 

What I would really like to see Topps do is get back to it's bread and butter. Topps pulls out all the stops on the retro product gravy train but overlooks what could really reel in more collectors. Take the existing flagship issue, with it's great photography, and put in a better engine so to speak.
   - go to a four or five-series release, thus give us collectors a better and more current roster
   - bring back the coaches cards (see '09 Heritage)
   - bring back the 3-player, team prospect cards ala early 1980's
   - more bench player cards (I don't need to see 4 different Strasburg's in my base set)
   - where did the team picture cards go? Bring 'em back (a favorite of mine as a kid)!

Here's hoping the 2011 Topps is as good and hopefully better than the 2009 version.  Maybe this is the year that I try building a set with my 6 year-old son ....


  1. I share the same feelings. I started the flagship set last year, to the point I even had about half of the short prints, and then looked at it one day and just went 'blah.' The killer for me was so many inserts.

    I want bench player cards too, to get those elusive cup of coffee guys for the all time Sox set.

    Word verification; warybe, I kid you not.

  2. Agreed on the insert sets, some were interesting like Tales of the Games, but the World Series set was pretty much done already in the 2001 Topps and with the Ring of Honor Insert set from two years ago. Why not go back to the 80's and add stickers as an insert to go along with a sticker album. How about felt/sticker pennants. Do we really need the "When they were young" insert set?

  3. Bench players are a must! I guess that's way I liked the old Total sets so much - you got cards of players that are often overlooked. Team cards are another must.

    I ended up building the 2010 base set of Topps and while it didn't wow me, it was still fun since I'm new to set building. 2011 looks much much better though and I'm anxiously awaiting it's release.