Working Checklist Here.
2011 Topps officially releases tomorrow, but cards are popping up in retail stores and have trickled on to eBay. I like what I see.
But first, things first. Here's a Tigers team set on eBay from TNT cards:
Now here are some cards posted by Dropped Third Strike last night:
See any difference? It looks to me like the first cards have Gold Foil and the second ones have Silver. In other words, it is possible that Topps has created two complete parallel sets--one for Hobby boxes (Gold) and one for Retail (Silver). This is an interesting (disturbing?) development, if true.
Anyway, onto the Tiger show. The base checklist is small, but I kind of like it. There is nobody on there that makes me go WHO? or WHY? the way that certain people have in the past (Brent Dlugach last year, Chris Lambert in 2009 etc.)
33 Max Scherzer
94 Ryan Raburn
109 Hamilton/Cabrera/Mauer LL: AVG
121 Brandon Inge
150 Miguel Cabrera
175 Brennan Boesch
179 Armando Galarraga
181 Magglio Ordonez
182 Jeremy Bonderman
202 Bautista/Konerko/Cabrera LL: HR
264 Ryan Perry
306 Cabrera/Rodriguez/Bautista LL: RBI
I dig it, especially with Miguel Cabrera on all three triple crown league leaders cards. Bondo and Galarraga are gone, but those are recent developments and they deserve a Series 1 card, IMO. Props to Ryan Raburn for making the cut.
There are a ton of inserts, as always, but it feels like there are especially alot this year. Already, I have spotted SEVEN cards of Ty Cobb. Ridiculous. It's their 60th anniversary, so I'm going to give Topps some slack on this one, but next year I'd really like to see this Topps slim down its set to just a couple of inserts.
Speaking of which, I really dig the look of the Topps 60 subset. Relevant, nicely done, maybe a little dull, but I like it. Here's Johnny Damon, on the only Tigers autograph or relic that has surfaced yet:
"Most consecutive 80 run seasons in the AL*" Hmm. I wonder what the asterisk stands for. I guess everybody does have a record, right Heartbreaking Cards?
One of my favorite additions in recent years have been the retail-only commemorative patches. I talked about them the other day. Well, this one may be the best yet, featuring my the old-school Tigers logo that I've always loved.
Having not seen the whole card, I'm not exactly sure what they're commemorating, but I dig the concept of a current player somehow paying tribute to the past, although for the life of me, I can't figure out what stands out about the 1961 Tigers.
Finally, although no Tigers have cropped up yet, I wanted to point out the new "Platinum Diamond" parallels.
Yeah, I'll be collecting these. They look amazing. I may try to collect a Gold set, as I typically do, but with INSANE ODDS for them (1:25 Blasters and 1:17 Retail?!?!) I may have to take a pass. Hopefully my OCD side can forgive me. I guess we'll see.
I'm sure that there will be more to come from me as more cards leak out. I'll be putting together a gallery as soon as I can get a definitive checklist and good images start cropping up. In the meantime, welcome to the real start of 2011 everyone!