A rack pack box? Sorry, I guess Topps must have that trademarked, because Upper Deck calls them Fat Packs. Whatever. As a set collector, I did some quick calculations on these and found I’d get 648 cards from a 500 card set. After the 2-a-fatpack Starquest turquoise cards, I’d still pull 612 cards, more than enough for a 500 card set, right?
Not quite. Collation was still pretty good, though, and I ended up 4 cards away from my series 2 set on the hopes that Upper Deck can replace my damaged cards for me, and three of those cards were from the 1001-1006 portion of the set which I believe are shortprinted.
As far as the damaged cards went, most of the cards with creased corners visible on the back were gone, but the printing marks remained a problem. A new issue arose with lots of excess foil, mostly on the backs of the cards. For some reason, though, I’m more willing to let Upper Deck slide this time around. But man, if they can sort this crap out, they’d be so much better off.
How about the photography, the one thing that kept Upper Deck heads above Topps? While certainly Topps has improved, Upper Deck seems also to have taken a step back. At one point there were four Astros pitchers in almost the same pose. And too many of these:
No, not Kyle Farnsworth cards. Posed photos. They’re everywhere. I appreciate Upper Deck trying to get me cards of players with their new teams, but rather then go and get some spring training action shots like Topps did, Upper Deck seemed content to go with the Olan Mills coupon special.
So after the debacle that was series 1, Upper Deck redeems itself a little with series 2. There were few cards I was blown away with, but I credit that mostly to the underwhelming design of the cards in general.
Should you buy a fat pack box as opposed to a hobby one? Well, if you are looking for the set and don’t want to be bogged down by useless inserts and jersey hits, then sure. The almost set I put together actually goes on ebay for more then the price of the box, so I guess that says something, too. But if you want the thrill of the chase and hope to pull a Griffey auto or some auto patch of the next big thing who’s yet to play in the majors, you’re better off going hobby.