Saturday, August 20, 2011

Team colors: Rockies (plus ... 'What Tha?')

This was going to be a post about the one thing that I do like about the 2011 Allen and Ginter design -- the color-coded team logo in the corner. Add a splash of purple watercolor behind Huston Street and there is no doubt that this is a Rockies card. Very nice.

I'll reserve comment about purple and sports teams.

But after a little research, my post was derailed by the sight of this:

That is not one, but two Topps 2011 cards of the Rockies' Jason Hammel, who got smacked around by the Dodgers last night.

The card on the left is #338 and the card on the right is #642.

BOTH of these cards are in Topps Series 2. Neither card is some sort of leader card or "season highlight card" (Hammel is a career 5.00 ERA pitcher, you know). These are two different BASE cards of a No. 4 starter from Colorado.

Here are the backs:

Except for the card number, the head shot at top left, and the blurb on the right about whatever random card shares Hammel's TWO card numbers, the backs on each card are identical.

The reappearance of the same player in the same year has happened repeatedly in recent Topps issues. Sometimes the same player appears in the Update set, wearing the same uniform as he did in the base set. Sometimes it's the same player in Series 2 that appeared in Series 1.

But the same guy in the same series with two separate base cards?

Is 330 cards too much for Topps to handle? I don't have much of an idea on how Topps goes about a checklist for each series. But like I said on this post, Topps used to have up to six different series in each flagship set, and it was never repeating the same player.

Has someone mentioned this already? I don't understand why this keeps happening.

To me, this is much more dorky and annoying than any gimmick in any set. This is a quality control issue.

I still think Topps is sacrificing quality for quantity. With all the sets it produces, something's got to suffer. But this is just stupid. Why would I want to collect an entire base set with two different Jason Hammels?

Anyway, here is the breakdown for the colors Topps used on Rockies cards for sets in which it determined the color based on the team:

1993: purple and silver
1994: black and purple
1998: purple
2000: purple
2002: purple and silver
2003: purple and silver
2004: purple and silver
2005: purple and silver
2006: purple and gold
2007: purple and silver
2008: purple and silver
2009: silver
2010: purple
2011: purple, silver and black

Rockies team colors: Purple, silver and black
What Topps says are the Rockies team colors: Purple and silver

Well, at least Topps is on top of something.

(The tally: Purple-13, Silver-9, Black-2, Gold-1)


  1. mistake after mistake after crappy quality releases.... what are you going to do? Buy another brand?


  2. In my boxed team set the #642 of Jason Hammel was in the set, the other was not. The card it replaced was of Ty Wigginton. Wiggy was on a card in Series 1 with the Orioles. Perhaps Topps did not want to out two Wiggintons in the set and inserted another Rockie, but with Hammel being forgettable they missed him.

    Either that or Topps employees are a bunch of dumbasses.

    Take your pick.

  3. hiflew - I don't understand if

    642 Was Hammel then 338 was Wigginton? and there are 2 Wiggintons in your box set?

  4. I'm glad you pointed this out, I just got both Hammel's in a series 2 hanger the other day and was surprised no one had blogged about it. How does Hammel have 2 cards yet Darnell McDonald, who had altogether way too much playing time for the Red Sox both last year and this year, has none?

  5. I also noticed 2 Mike Stanton cards both in the 1st series. #78 and #135. Not a bad player but why he has 2 cards in one series is kinda baffling.

  6. The players with multiple cards in Series 1, I believe, were all rookie cup players. One card had a rookie cup and one did not.

    Of course, Jason Hammel ain't a rookie.

  7. The two cards for rookie cup players is also annoying, but at least it seems purposeful since it applies to *all* the rookie cup players. The two Jason Hammels smacks of, like you said, quality control issues. If they're going to drop the base set to 660 cards, they need to at least do their best to make them unique.

  8. @John Bateman - The Wigginton I got in my box set is NOT in Series 1 or 2. The Wigginton in Series 1 is with the Orioles and is a completely different picture.