My first days of college -- and then again at graduate school -- felt similar in some respects to how I feel about card collecting today. I'm seeing things for the first time that others have seen and known for ages. It's like moving to a new school. Everything is familiar to those people who have been there all along, but every corner is a new experience to the new guy.
My newness is manifesting itself in my purchasing habits. I bought several boxes of the Turkey Red earlier this year because it was new to me and I had not bought any before. To be honest, it underwhelmed.
So, I feared making the same mistake again with other products. I stayed away from the Donruss sets because I didn't like what I saw in the pre-production stages. I still don't know where to get Topps Tribute, though I admit that I do like that set.
But, when I saw that the "Museum Collection" was coming out, I was very hesitant. The expense involved for a few cards was rather daunting. Sure, there would be hits, so it could be a money generator on eBay or at least trade bait, but I felt assured that it would be unlikely for me to get my money back on the deal if I went that route.
In the end, I couldn't help myself and bought one of the four "pack" boxes. Why? I'm not sure. After all, each pack contained a total of 5 cards. In other words, you pay about $170 for 20 cards. What the hell was I thinking?
I don't know.
Well, let's cut to the chase, so to speak, and see what I got:
First, the silver foiled base cards had at least one good bit of news for me:
Thank God I got my guy Yount in there. That by itself was not worth the price of admission, but at least it made me happy.
Here are the rest of the base cards:
So, not too bad. Sure, Nuschler-face makes an appearance and I'm still not sure how Ricky Nolasco gets a spot in any high-end set, but not a terrible group of the base cards.
In addition to base cards and in its usual parallel frenzy, Topps has included copper cards (which do not have serial numbers). Here are the copper parallels I got:
No kidding -- 2 of the parallels are ones for which I already have a base card. Thanks Topps! </sarcasm>
Next, as Cards from The Quarry probably can tell you at this point, it's not a box opening for me unless I get a serial numbered Wilin Rosario card. It happened with a 2013 Heritage box, and it happened here too: a green parallel numbered to 199:
Now, to the inserts.
I received one Canvas Collection Reproduction -- not one of the cool 1/1 real artwork ones, but just a reproduction -- of the great Ernie Banks:
And, then, there are the relics and autographs. The box promises 1 on-card autograph, 1 autograph relic, 1 quad relic, and 1 jumbo relic, so here's what I got in reverse order:
The Jumbo Relic: Another guy whom I seem to get in serial numbers a decent amount, Chad Billingsley, on his "Momentous Material" serial number 1 of 50....is there any premium to having number 1?
The Quad Relic: Perhaps Topps is just taunting me at this point by inserting my PED-using nemesis, Alex Rodriguez, into my life on a quad relic numbered 70 of 99...I will probably be buried with this card because that is the only way my estate will ever get rid of this thing:
The Autographed Relic: Two pieces of white fabric, a sticker autograph, and a small photo of a Red Sox pitcher serial numbered 92 of 299: Felix Doubront:
The On Card Autograph. Here's where I'm the new kid in school -- or, at this point, I'm the new kid in school complaining about the same bad lunches that the kids 10 years ago complained about. I got a redemption card. Now, I'm not complaining too loudly because it's a decent hit, but I still don't get what a lot of people don't get -- why does Topps include insert cards for players in the set that it has not had the opportunity to get in to their offices to sign stuff?
Anyway, it's a /10 Framed Autograph of a St. Louis Cardinal. This box taunts me.
Boy, isn't that a beautiful autograph?
This Joe Strummer song goes well here:
In all seriousness, this is a really nice looking and feeling set of cards. The stock is thick, the photos are good (if repeated from other sets, possibly, and cropped in typical Topps fashion), and the hits are decent. But for what a person pays for this box, I felt like Madison J. Frog should have hopped out and started singing to me.
I will think twice before looking for another frog to sing for me.