Friday, November 17, 2017

Keeping Things Updated

I really didn't intend to buy Update this year.  I had already collected the complete Series 1 and 2 and I figured I had spent enough on Flagship.  But there is a part of my collection that needs update.  Rookie of the Year award winners make up a large portion of my collection, and this year's awards will go to two big time players.  Big time, at least, in the sense of the current prices of their cards.  Overall, this year's entire rookie class is pretty big time.  When I saw the number of Aaron Judge and Cody Bellinger cards in the Update checklist, I figured that my best bet to collect those cards on the cheap would be to get a few packs of cards. Since my goal was to get as much Update base as possible for as little money as possible, I calculated that fat packs were the way to go.  So after going the entire month of October (and most of September, for that matter) without purchasing new cards, I picked up a few packs of Update, hoping to get as much of the base set as possible, and really hoping that I wouldn't have to buy Judge and Bellinger rookies separately.

Obviously, Update has two major draws: rookies and traded players.  Personally, I believe that Update should only contain players with this designation.  Here I have some of the better rookies for my collection.  Gurriel had himself a pretty good postseason, though he did make a few waves after his home run off Darvish in the World Series.  Brugman may not have a made a name for himself yet in the Majors, but he did play his college ball in Provo at BYU.  The two Yoan Moncada cards came back-to-back in the same pack, and it exemplifies what is wrong with Update.  First of all, Moncada's rookie debut card appears in 2017, though he debuted in 2016.  Second, Moncada was traded since that debut, and as a result, appears with a different team.  So one player has two cards with two different teams in the same.  Not only that, but the rookie debut took place a year earlier.  If I ran the show, Moncada would have one rookie card in this set.  The Rookie Debut could be an insert set or something.  Or, better yet, the rookie card in Update could simply put the date of the debut, if the debut date is so necessary.

I have mixed feelings about the All-Star cards.  On one hand, I love the All-Star Game, so I like having the year's participants chronicled.  On the other hand, I'm not sure I 'd miss them if they were removed from Update.  The Home Run Derby cards, however, can go.  In fact, I think Topps could make a pretty good insert set of the Derby, instead.  It would be a fun topic, a solid checklist, and would remove the bloat from the base set. 

Of course, I'm always happy to get Cubs, and Ian Happ was one of those hot rookies I'm glad to get my hands on.  It just so happens that all the Cubs I pulled belong in this set, too.  A couple of rookies, a newly acquired player, and a card featuring an event from the current season. 

As for the inserts, these are the ones I am keeping.  I'm really not a fan of more rookie reprints, but since I'll probably never obtain the originals, I'll hold on to these.  The Heroes of Autumn is nice looking set, in my opinion.  The grayscale leaves on the border just look classy to me, and there are some classic names in the checklist.

Here are some more inserts that I don't plan on holding onto.  Some of these have already been claimed in trades.  I'm strongly considering keeping the Bregman simply because the play where he nailed Greg Bird at home in the ALCS is etched in my mind.  It's a gold parallel, by the way.  I didn't even realize that at first.

This may only seem odd to me, but I pulled a photo variation of Miggy.  It's numbered as part Series 1 on the back.  What the?  I don't understand, but it's a cool card, nonetheless.

Overall, I like the concept of Update.  A small set at the end of the year to sweep up rookies and roster moves that couldn't be put in Series 1 or 2 is a good thing.  But this year's update set has some major flaws, in my mind.  There are some traded players that are missing.  (I'd point out Chris Taylor, but it seems like I've heard that before.  If I could just remember where. . . )  There are a gazillion cards of star rookies like Judge and Bellinger.  I, for one, can do without having so many cards of one player.  Give him a base rookie and maybe an All-Star card.  That's all we need.  If it were up to me, the set would be around 150 cards, all rookies and roster updates, with maybe an All-Star subset.  The rest can go.  But then, I probably wouldn't stay in business because I wouldn't be able to sell as many packs of cards with such a small set.  So what do I know?

I do know one thing.  I bought several packs, thinking that the price per card in a pack was going to be better than what I could find on the secondary market, especially for Judge and Bellinger.  There are 3 Judges and 5 Bellingers in the base set.  They make up almost 3% of the set between the two of them.  I didn't pull a single one.  It appears that the odds were not in my favor.

An Update on Update

Before I published this post, I ventured out for another fat pack.  I'll throw some scans of my spoils in this post while I'm at it.

A couple more Cubs in this pack. I may be appreciative of an Ian Happ card, and that uniform is beautiful, but the Rookie Debut seems superfluous.  Just put the date on his base card and give him one card!

This is what belongs in Update: players in uniforms that don't look familiar at all. 

These cards also belong in Update.  I love the name Rookie.  I love owning the rookie of Rookie.  I love that he and Magneuris Sierra are the beginnings of an All-Star name team. 

Here are a couple inserts that are up for grabs.  Anybody want them?

But here is the piece d'resistance, the very reason I'm posting this cards today as a postscript to the post.  I just couldn't wait to show off my Ryne Sandberg SP variation and Cody Bellinger insert.  I collect Rookies of the Year, and this is the first card I have of Bellinger.  (Note: I still don't have a base of Bellinger or Judge for the set.)  Great looking cards here.

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