Grand Cards: Tigers Checklist: 2009 UD A Piece of History

Friday, January 29, 2010

Tigers Checklist: 2009 UD A Piece of History

Hmm...seems like Upper Deck has gotten themselves in a bit of hot water with MLB with their latest shenanigans which, contrary to my rudimentary analysis, are explicitly not authorized by MLB according to a statement printed on the box. Wow. I hope you're sued out of existence you brazen asses. It's funny that I can say that even while I love the cards in these releases, but rules are rules and you're a bunch of dicks.

Anyway, turning to happier times, here's a set that Upper Deck produced in 2009 that was perfectly within the letter of the law: A Piece of History. I've found this title kind of funny for the last two years, simply because it's not particularly relic-heavy like Ballpark Collection, and the cards don't seem to have much of anything to do with "history" at all. But whatever. There's some good and bad in the set from a Tigers perspective.

Base Set This teeny tiny base set includes the big guns that you would expect, for the most part plus a rookie that both card companies were infatuated with for some reason when the year started. The number of times I've seen a rookie with no future included in a set just so that they can add another rookie to the set is shocking to me, but that's a topic for another post. The cards are nice enough, with colored parallel version that either pop and look great or are overwhelming and cause spontaneous eye bleeds. I'll show you the regular versions:

#33 Miguel Cabrera

#34 Magglio Ordonez

#35 Justin Verlander

#121 Chris Lambert RC

#132 Dusty Ryan RC

Inserts The inserts are cool. I'm not going to lie. They take the underlying design premise of the base cards, remove the bland and end up looking pretty snazzy. Additional upside is serial numbering on the front, which I'm a sucker for. Downside is meaningless parallel versions (even moreso than the base set) that don't align with base set parallel versions, making display of these cards feel disjointed. Common versions of the inserts are shown where possible, with a Turquoise (#/99) Magglio substituting for the more common, and ironically harder to find a picture of, version.

#BSM-GS Gary Sheffield (#/999)

#CSC-PC Pujols/Cabrera (#/999)

#FM-OCGG Ordonez/Cabrera/ Guillen/Granderson (#/999)

#FH-MO Magglio Ordonez Turquoise (#/99)

#SS-CG Curtis Granderson (#/999)

Autographs & Relics Splat. This is where the set falls flat for me. Autographs and Relics are the same design as un-autographed or un-autographed versions. Lame. So, here's the same cards you've already seen, but with the addition of a signature or a little piece of a jersey.

#121 Chris Lambert RC Auto

#BSM-GS Gary Sheffield GU

#FH-MO Magglio Ordonez GU Red (#/180)

#SS-CG Curtis Granderson Auto/Relic (#/25)

#SS-CG Curtis Granderson GU Red (#/180)

Like so many sets, I don't have a whole lot more to say about this. It is what it is. It's got goods and bads, ups and downs. It's not the stuff that I actively pursue, but when one falls into my hands, I find I like it more than I'd expect. That's just the way things are for me with these small sets that rely on artificial scarcity and "hits" to sell. They don't really appeal to me, and now--as a former player collector--I'm relieved that I don't feel compelled to track down cards from them.