I’ve had one of these in the closet to be an interlude for all the hockey that was coming your way. So far, the hockey boxes have been a slow go. So I bought another one because I really like the 92 Upper Deck Minor League Votto card. Stupid to bust a blaster for one card, I know. But I’ve seen some praise on other blogs for this stuff, and I wanted to see what the fuss was about. My gut told me to turn away, but I plunked down the cash and brought it home anyway.
I should have gone with the gut.
Before I get started, though, I have to ask this up front: Are the base cards supposed to have a little splotch on the left side? Is that part of the design? I’ll reference it again later, but I want to know and don’t want the question passed over mid break.
3 Carlos Beltran
TM-AB A.J. Burnett game used bat (there goes the suspense)
117 Greg Smith (92 UD Minor League design)
218 Mark Teixeira (04 Timeless Teams)
dayf oddly has a post featuring the bat card I pulled. What are the odds? So instead, there’s Tex in an Angels uni. I have a feeling next year he’ll be in another new uni. Call him well travelled.
27 Alex Rodriguez (with scuff mark)
18 Ryan Braun (scuff mark)
45 Vladimir Guerrero (scuff mark)
118 Hernan Iribarren (92 Minor League design)
182 Brain Bocock (95 SP Top Prospects design) with a printers crease
245 Miguel Cabrera (’04 Timeless Teams)
From all the pics I’ve seen, the 92 Minor League set is the one I liked best. Those Timeless Team cards are nice, too. I like this set better already, with the exception of the damaged cards.
46 Torii Hunter (scuff mark)
10 Chase Utley
36 Jim Thome
9 Mark Teixeira
82 J.R. Towles
159 Jimmy Rollins (94 All Time Heroes design)
Here’s a subset I like more in person than I did in pictures. Initial photos just made me think it was a goofy design, but it works in person for some reason. Two Reds are featured in this part of the set (Votto and Volquez), so I’ll add them to my “hope to pull” list.
37 Grady Sizemore printer’s creased
19 Prince Fielder scuff marked
28 Derek Jeter scuffed marked
55 Edison Volquez with a printer’s crease
168 Daisuke Matsuzaka (94 All Time Heroes design)
190 Homer Bailey (95 SP Top Prospects design) with printer’s crease
AAAARRGHHH! Why don’t I listen to myself and avoid Upper Deck stuff. This is absolutely ridiculous. Bent corners, I can understand. It’s people at the store treating them less than gingerly. But printer’s creases? You’ve got to be frickin’ kidding me. This better not happen in another pack.
26 Randy Johnson with slight printer’s crease
35 Roy Halladay
17 Ken Griffey Jr
1 Jose Reyes
109 David Murphy (92 Minor league design)
231 Derek Lee (04 Timeless Teams) slight printer’s crease
The Griffey and the ’92 design cancel out the printer’s creases. But now I’m begining to notice an odd blotch on the borders of the base cards. As if they were hit with a single shot of spray paint. Is this part of the design, or are things going worse than I thought?
38 Travis Hafner with slight printer’s crease
8 Chipper Jones, printer’s creased
44 Frank Thomas, printer’s creased
30 David Ortiz, printer’s creased
73 Alexei Ramirez, printer’s creased
135 Ryan Braun (94 All Time Heroes design)
This is where I get the feeling I should stand up, toss this in the trash, and go to bed. It would be much better for my soul.
47 Josh Hamilton
20 Albert Pujols
11 Ryan Howard, printer’s creased
128 Russell Martin (92 Minor League design) printer’s crease
208 Seth Smith (95 SP Top Prospects design) printer’s crease
217 Chipper Jones (04 Timeless Teams) pritner’s crease
If this were a baseball game, Upper Deck would be batting .333 in this pack, and I’d be happy. But it’s not a baseball game. Guess what I’m not.
3 Carlos Beltran (again)
29 Chien-Ming Wang
2 David Wright
YSL6245 Roger Clemens, with abscess
79 Josh Banks, printer’s crease
153 Hanley Ramirez (94 All Time Heroes design)
I should have guessed one of those YSL cards would be here. It just feels like salt in an open wound.
12 Jimmy Rollins
21 Tim Lincecum
39 C.C. Sabathia
110 Edison Volquez (92 Minor League) printer’s crease
297 Erik Bedard (04 Timeless Teams)
Nice. The one card I’d really want, and it’s damaged. So here’s the Lincecum instead. I like this card, too.
Mercifully, Pack 10
49 Felix Hernandez
4 Pedro Martinez
31 Manny Ramirez
88 Burke Badenhop printer’s creased
144 Josh Beckett (94 All Time Heroes design)
181 Brandon Boggs (95 SP Top Prospects design), printer’s creased
So there you go. Almost half the cards I pulled from this blaster are damaged in one way or another. The other half of the base cards (the first 100) have that odd splotch on the side. Please tell me that’s part of the design and not another flaw. Please.
Either way, I’m afraid to touch the other blaster I have of this stuff.
I will say that I remember those printer creases mostly from 93/94 Upper Deck hockey. I guess in a sense, Upper Deck really captured the flavor of those earlier releases in these cards for me. Plus there’s a flippin’ duplicate in the 56 cards I actually pull when the set is 360 cards long.
It’s too bad. I still don’t get the point of this set, but the cards look nicer than I gave them credit for and I can see how this would have been a fun break were it not for all the carnage. Upper Deck made some wise choices to mimic from their past.
Would I chase the set, though? No. I don’t see the point of this release. I’m wondering if this set is benefitting from the fact that Topps latest release is the almost boring U & H, and they have nothing else coming that isn’t high end. If you want something new to break, this is one of your only options that’s cheap and widely available.
For what it’s worth, here’s the breakdown of the box:
5 1992 UD Minor League Card Design
5 1994 UD All-Time Heroes Card Design
4 1995 SP Top Prospects Card Design
5 2004 UD Timeless Teams Card Design
0 93, 94, 95 SP Rookie Card Designs
1 Yankee Stadium Legacy card
1 Game Used bat from a pitcher
I saw earlier a hobby box of this stuff for around $40 dollars. If you are interested in this one, save up for the hobby box instead. The hit ratios are better for the subsets, and you’ll get a ton more cards then you will be cobbling together two blasters.