BASEBALL IS BACK! I have been opening way too much 2018 Topps Series 1 Baseball the last couple weeks and I just can’t stop. I am hoping this final Target binge will hold me over until the release of Topps Heritage at the end of the month. On this break, I opened up three blasters and four hanger boxes, a little over $100 worth, this time without the Target exclusive Derek Jeter Highlight cards. Since I have opened quite a bit of this already, there aren’t many cards I want that I haven’t pulled already, but there is one that I’ve had my eBay eye on and I’ve finally pulled it. Anyway, without further ado, here are the results:
I didn’t get a full set, but I did get quite a few doubles and some triples. All of the big Series 1 rookies (Hoskins, Hays, Andujar, etc.) and stars (Judge, Stanton, Kershaw, etc) were represented. Another blaster or a few hanger boxes would have completed the set, but I don’t have the storage space to become a set collector. I have hoarded mass quantities of rookies and stars though, saving them for a break out year, monster spring, or Hall of Fame induction.
I got two doubles out of this bunch, Kenta Maeda and Daniel Murphy. One of the best and most popular players in the game, Kris Bryant. Topps paid tribute to the late Roy Halladay in this set as well, a nice gesture and a card I will keep in my collection. A pair of Mets rookies, Dominic Smith and Amed Rosario. Manny Machado and Bo Jackson round out the base 1983 cards. I also pulled one blue parallel of Jose Canseco. I love the throwback cards from Topps and like the 1987 cards last year, I kept quite a few of players I don’t typically collect.
Gold parallels are back, as always, serial numbered to the year. This year’s run is limited to 2018 copies and the gold wave looks fantastic. All three that I pulled are solid players, not guys that I collect, but still great cards.
Legends In The Making
This is my least favorite insert set, but they are plentiful. They aren’t horrible cards, and the blue and black parallels look pretty cool, but they feel like an insert set Score would put out. I’ve got at least the base and some blue and black parallels of the players I collect, so like the Golds, these will be sold for whatever I can get out of them.
I pulled five of these and they are all good names. The Stanton Hank Aaron Award Winner card is particularly stunning. He had a monster year and I can only imagine the back yard home run derby that he is going to play with Judge this year. Rounding out the group are Jason Heyward, Gary Sanchez, George Springer and Nolan Arenado.
Topps Now Top 10
I don’t understand this set, seems a little self-congratulatory, but maybe someone likes it. MY guess is that the only reason anyone would buy these is to complete a master set. Luckily, I only pulled two of them this time.
This is a cool looking insert set with all the big stars pictured on Opening Day. I may be getting too far in the weeds, but since this is called 2018 Topps Opening Day, when 2018 Topps Opening Day comes out, will there be mass confusion? I like the concept for the insert, but when you already have a standalone series called Opening Day, naming an insert set Opening Day seems like an odd move. Either way, I’m ready for Opening Day! Also, I pulled three blue parallels and they really pop.
Player’s Weekend Commemorative Patches
These are manufactured relics that come one per Blaster Box…Some years they are great looking cards (see 2011 Topps Series 1) and other years they are a little bland. This one is about half and half. Great concept on the Player’s Weekend theme, but using the players’ nicknames and adding a little more color would have made these things just about perfect.
Rainbow Foil Parallels
Other than the fact that these cards like to take on a curved shape as soon as you pull them out of the pack, they are always a favorite. This years foils are no exception. Check out the shine on that Pat Valaika, it looks 10 times better in person.
This insert set is the coolest. Great mix of current stars, legends of the past, and rookies on a great design. I think these inserts will have some staying power in an otherwise forgetful card market. Out of the 12, I got a good mix including Anthony Rizzo, George Brett, and up and coming Second Baseman, Ozzie Albies.
Another great looking insert set. These remind me of chasing down Cal Ripken and Ken Griffey Jr inserts in the last 90s. I haven’t pulled any of the parallels, but the base insert are cool in my book. We might be losing Machado next year, but as long as he is an Oriole, I’ll keep collecting him. The bright orange looks pretty good on that purple background.
The Good Stuff
Photo variations this year seem easier to pull than last year’s Series 1, but not as plentiful as 2017 Update. I’ve been eyeing this Adam Jones on eBay and so stoked to have pulled it myself. I was really excited to pull another Independence Day Parallel, serial numbered to 76. Unfortunately this one is a checklist…fortunately it is a checklist featuring the World Champions from last year. Finally, we have the Home Run Challenge scratch off card. Topps is giving away parallel cards and a trip to the 2019 Home Run Derby. Check out the Topps blog for contest details. Definitely a fun idea for the code cards, but I haven’t had good luck with them in the past, so I am going to try and sell this one off.
Overall this was a really fun break, as Topps Series 1 Baseball always is. I am anxiously looking forward to opening some Heritage in about 2 weeks and all diving headfirst into all the madness that Ohtani has caused in the hobby this month. Please feel free to Contact Me with any questions or suggestions for future content. Thanks for reading and hold on for an exciting year in Baseball Cards!