Thursday, February 27, 2014

2014 Heritage: We Have Checklist!

Holy cow, 2014 Heritage is less than a week away!

One of the most anticipated Heritage releases in recent memory is scheduled to hit hobby shelves next Wednesday.  I've been so busy with the little guy and some extended work hours -- among other things -- that the release date has kinda snuck up on me.

But, thanks to the wondrous blog world, I caught a much needed reminder when I happened upon the blog of The Topps Baseball Fanatic earlier today.  And, much to my excitement, he brought news of the checklist going live.

I'm going to provide a little commentary and my initial thoughts on the checklist and so forth, but if you'd rather skip that and just scope out the checklist, be my guest!

Here it is:

Okay, so my first task was to jump directly to the 75-card short print portion of the checklist, because this is the area that causes me and the rest of the set collectors a great deal of grief.

As was the case in 2013, this year's Heritage set has overloaded the SP checklist with a vulgar amount of the game's most sought after names.  For starters, the hottest young players such as Puig (shocking!), Jose Fernandez, Matt Harvey, Wil Myers, Yu Darvish, and Stephen Strasburg can be found here, as well as established stars like Cabrera, Votto, Jeter, Verlander, Cano, and Felix Hernandez.

But, in the interest of fairness, I will point out that Mike Trout and Bryce Harper are not SPs this year, nor is my boy David Wright, who was a short print each of the last three years.  Zack Wheeler, Yoenis Cespedes, Clayton Kershaw, Michael Wacha, and Andrew McCutchen are also in the regular 425-card non-SP base set.  All easily could have been made SPs, further driving us all into madness.  I guess I have to concede that Topps did a pretty fair job this year, even more so than last.

Other things that interested me:

-- Chris Davis finally made the 500-card Heritage set!  The last two years he was only included in the High Numbers box set.  Way to go, Crush!

-- The Mets received 16 slots in this year's set.  Included are: Daniel Murphy, Jenry Mejia (why?), Johan Santana (double why??), Ike Davis, Jon Niese, Terry Collins, Jeremy Hefner (nice!), Bartolo Colon (airbrush special, I'm sure), David Wright, d'Arnaud/Flores RC, Dillon Gee, Tovar/Robles RC, Bobby Parnell, Zack Wheeler, Matt Harvey, and Curtis Granderson (more photo magic).  Coulda done without Johan and Mejia; maybe give us Eric Young, Jr. and Juan Lagares instead.  Or, if they insist on a pitcher, Scott Rice or Vic Black.  I mean, Johan didn't throw a single pitch in 2013 and, furthermore, he's presently a FA.

-- Roy Halladay got a card.  The retired Roy Halladay.

-- Jeter's final Heritage card (maybe) is #433.

-- New Age Performers, Then & Now, and Flashbacks have returned as insert series.

-- Blue, Red and Black bordered parallels are back (YES!).

-- Keith Olbermann has two Real One autographs?  Barf City.

Those are just a few of my initial thoughts and observations.  I haven't had a chance to digest the whole thing yet.  Plus I'm too giddy to process and recite much more than this.

But, all gripes aside, I'm geeked out of my mind to get my hands on the new cards.  I think the '65 set is one of the true home runs from Topps' history of card designs, and I know many of you folks reading this likely agree.

Whereas last year I bought a hobby box, I think my plan of attack this year is to just buy a truckload of the 3-pack blister packages from Target.  You know, the ones that have the three black variants as a bonus.  For the price of a hobby box, I figure I can snag about six or seven or eight of them.  For me, the black bordered cards are of greater interest than the photo variations or jersey cards that I'd otherwise get in a hobby box.  Plus, you can still score autos and relics in retail packs.

Of course, I reserve the right to change my mind regarding this plan, but that's where I'm at right now.

The release of Heritage is always a special occasion during the baseball card calendar, and this year's edition looks like it'll meet and exceed the excitement levels from any prior year.

Next week can't come soon enough!



  1. Thanks for the link to the checklist! 15 1/2 Padres (the .5 is from a rookie card that is split with a White Sox player), no cards in the high numbers checklist. The only Padres card that's not in the base set is a Yonder Alonso relic. Nice to not have to chase down as much, but seems a little disappointing, still.

    Hopefully the Pads can step up their game this year and get some more cardboard in next year's set.

  2. I noticed the first Ron Santo card in a Topps product in quite a while. Unfortunately it's a cut signature that I'll probably never get my hands on.

  3. ...and I haven't finished 2013 Heritage yet, or 2012, or 2011.....

    1. I'm right there with ya, Bert. I've still got some heavy lifting to do for '11 and '13.

  4. Good write up, Mark. I'm going after Heritage as my "base'' card set for '14. (You know how I feel about the disaster that's '14 Topps.) Hoping we can get the trade thing going to knock this out. Likely buying a box or two and packs/racks.

    Also, I haven't forgotten to sent you some '77s. Just lazy. I'll get to it very soon.

    1. Haha! No worries, Dean. Looking forward to future trading with ya...

  5. Well the Rockies have 20 cards in the base set, counting 1 multi-player leaders card and 1 multi rookie shared with a Red, and 4 of them are in the SP section. I am excited about the numbers, but what has me more excited than anything is the inclusion of Walt Weiss as the Rockies manager. This is the first time in the history of the Heritage line that the Rockies manager has received a card. I am looking forward to this one.

    1. Good point. I'm not sure how Topps decides which managers get a card. It certainly isn't based off team performance since the Mets' Terry Collins has landed a card each of the last four years!

  6. That Harper card is horrifying. Somebody mess up that guy's 'do PLEASE!

    I'll buy some Heritage, because I always do, but the SPs (three Dodgers this year) always take the fun out of it.

  7. If you get a Keith Olbermann autograph, I'll gladly take it off your hands. I do agree, though, that Topps owes Scott Rice a card. Hasn't he waited long enough? He finally makes it to the majors and...nothing. Mejia's excusable since he's supposed to be the 5th starter in the rotation. We'll see. They're talking about putting him in the bullpen again (because that worked so well the last time). I still want a Dice-K Mets card, too. Overall, Topps does a lousy job at player selection. At least with the Mets. I'd gladly sacrifice Hefner for Dice-K. Hefner won't be pitching this year anyway.