Saturday, May 4, 2013

My Ideal Set

As much as I enjoy inserts, relics, and autographs, they are not often what I strive for when I am opening packs.  I know my chances are usually slim that I will pull any relics or autos at all, much less autos and relics of the Red Sox.  I have pulled a few in my lifetime, but not many.  So those pulls are bonuses rather than cards I ever expect to get.  I do significantly better with Red Sox inserts.
But the real reason I collect is to get the Red Sox cards.  And I do enjoy getting the star players, but let's face it, the stars are in every single set.  I love getting the lesser-known players.  The backups, the middle relievers, the players who spent a brief time with the team.  I love getting cards of players who just do not have a lot of cards.
Topps's flagship brand is decent at providing a diversity of players, particularly with the Update set.  This year Vicente Padilla and Ryan Sweeney were both included in the basic set, neither player had many cards last year at all.  Update has provided cards of Casey Kotchman, Franklin Morales, Kevin Jarvis, and many other Red Sox cards of players who had none previously and none afterwards.  But as good as Topps is, it is not as diverse as Topps Total, Upper Deck 40 Man, and Pacific Online from years past.
Those are my ideal sets.  Each one had a large number of cards for each team, including some subsets to include more cards of star players as well as featuring a diverse group of players.  Topps Total had a large number of rookie cards, rivaling Bowman, the Home of the Rookie Card.  Those are sets that I really miss and I hope Topps can bring back Total, but there has not been a set since 2005.


  1. I agree 100 percent. If I could change one thing about the hobby right now, it'd be a return of Topps Total.

    Pacific Online isn't one of my favorite designs, but I love how deep the checklist is.

  2. Seconded! Or thirded, I guess? I will always take in a Gwynn card that I don't already have, but I can't get enough cards of Padres bench players. My favorite card from last year's flagship has become Brad Brach's rookie card, an unknown member of the Friar bullpen. Dude was drafted in the 42nd round!