Continuing the countdown toward Father’s Day, I am recapping the gifts that I was given last year. One of those presents was a box of ’11 Topps Series 2. 2011 is a special year in my family, as my daughter was born that year.
I specifically asked for Series 2, as Joe Mauer is on the box, and any box depicting a catcher is a must.
Upon opening the box, I was amazed at the number of inserts. This was my first box of modern Topps cards, and I was not used to so many inserts.
Diamond Duos is an interesting insert. Two players are paired up according to some kind of theme: usually they are either teammates or play the same position. I am a not excited about multi-player cards, but I think Topps did a good job pairing up most of these players.
Diamond Stars is another insert that impressed me. Topps put together a good checklist of current stars, and almost every team is represented. I love the look of the card; the blue and red color scheme works well together, and the use of a baseball field (diamond) in the background is great. Of these cards, Evan Longoria’s looks the best.
An area of collecting that I was, and still am unfamiliar with, is the code cards. In the last several years, Topps has tried to appeal to a more technological consumer by including online collecting. In 2011, it was ToppsTown.com cards. Each of these cards came with a code on the back that was to be redeemed by a certain date (1/31/12). Redeeming these cards allowed buyers to collect digital cards and unluck other collecting fun. Personally, I don’t like anything about the design of these cards, nor do I want to collect digital cards.
Topps 60 is yet another insert. With this insert, Topps is apparently recognizing important statistical achievements during the 60 years Topps has been in business. While most of these achievements are legitimate, Ellsbury’s important stat is that he had the highest average in the month of September from 07-10, for the Red Sox. I am not so sure that we need a card to commemorate that, and I am a die-hard Boston fan.
In addition to the numerous inserts (I won’t focus on the rest of them) each base card has numerous parallels. These three are the Gold parallels, numbered to 2011. I find very little appeal in these cards. In addition to these, I also pulled a Black parallel.
This Octavio Dotel is numbered to 60. While I like the black border much more than the gold, it seems ridiculous to have so many parallels of all of the players. How many Octavio Dotel collectors are out there?
It is staggering just how many inserts and parallels are in this set. Thankfully, I only collect a handful of active players, but with sets like this, there are dozens of cards to go after.
Every hobby box is supposed to have at least one relic or autographed card. I was lucky enough to get a someone on the Red Sox. Jon Lester is the closest thing to an ace the Red Sox have had in a long time. I was happy with this card, as he is someone who I actively collect.
Unlike ’86 Topps, there is no way that I am going to put this entire set together, nor do I want to. There are just too many cards to go after. However, this was another amazing Father’s Day present.