It's not about being first. It's about having something to say.
At least that's what I kept telling myself the more I scrolled through Archives posts today. (Thirteen today alone, so far).
Even before I bought a rack pack and a loose pack of this stuff, I wondered what the hell I was going to say about it. I basically already said my thoughts before I had even touched any of the cards. And after opening these, nothing has changed.
It's Lineage 2.0. And it's Fan Favorites minus 20.0.
I've seen a wide range of opinions on these cards and I'm more in the "what's the big deal" camp. I can't believe people are praising the wrapper. It's a wrapper. Besides, in the '80s I was sick to death of seeing the baseball with the streak on the front. "WILL YOU PLEASE CHANGE YOUR WRAPPER TO SOMETHING OTHER THAN A GIANT BASEBALL GLOWING LIKE THE SUN????" I believe were my thoughts back then.
Since I'm so (*yawn*) about this product, my only objective with buying this -- other than getting a lame post out of it -- was finding a Dodger or two.
And I failed miserably.
Not only did I not get one Dodger, I got FOUR Giants.
This is not funny anymore. I can't tell you how many posts I've written in which I've opened a product for the first time and nothing but Giants came out.
This is no coincidence. Someone is doing this on purpose. I don't know how. It's the most evil, ingenious plot that man has ever devised. But something devious is definitely going on.
This time it was even worse. I got one short-print in the rack pack. And I got one insert in the loose pack. Both would be considered the prizes of each pack, although it's not like I'm pulling autographs out of the thing.
BOTH were Giants.
Am I being paranoid? Am I being overdramatic? Am I blowing off steam after a week of crap?
I don't know. But I am pissed.
What's more, I just sealed up a package destined for the only Giants card collector I know. So I'm stuck with these distasteful cards for a good while because there ARE NO OTHER GIANTS FANS WHO COLLECT CARDS.
NOBODY LIKES THE GIANTS, TOPPS!! NOBODY! Stop making Giants cards!!!!!!
Now, I know because I wrote that, someone is going to write in the comments, "I'm a Giants fan. You've got a great pack there."
Terrific. Thanks for emerging out of the woodwork. Where've you been for four years?
If you want the Giants cards, you better bring it -- and I mean Dodgers from Archive, shortprint Dodgers from Archive in one particular case. Otherwise, I'm burning these cards on my front lawn at midnight.
It is in this foam-mouthed frame of mind that you will see the cards from the rack pack.
Prepare for bitter commentary.
#42 - Ardolis Chapman, Reds
Guys with double earrings make me wonder why I'm still collecting cards of today's ballplayers.
#80 - Troy Tulowitzki, Rockies
Remember the days when I used to complain about pulling more Carlos Lee cards than anyone else? Troy Tulowitzki has long since passed the Lee plague. If I pull an insert, 75 percent of the time it's a Tulowitzki.
And is Tulo playing for the state penitentiary team?
#125 - David Freese, Cardinals
I am so rooting against a repeat this year.
#175 - Justin Morneau, Twins
OK, let's stop to talk about the make-up of the cards. As a number of bloggers (re: about 50,000) have said, there is no gloss on these cards. It's like a matte finish. That's kind of nice. The cards are still much too thin, but the finish takes your mind off of that. So there's a happy thought.
Meanwhile, others have mentioned that there is no foil. Can you imagine if there was foil on these designs? That would be a crime against nature (and I've seen the refractor versions of these cards to know that a crime is exactly what it is).
OK, when I was opening this pack, there was a moment in which I thought to myself, "Gee, wouldn't it be great if I pulled two Diamondback cards in a row? They're such a plucky, lovable team of rapscallions."
#182 - Ian Kennedy, Diamondbacks
#23 - Chris Young, Diamondbacks
All my dreams have come true. And by "dreams" I mean seeing what it would look like to have a too-long team nickname squashed into a 1984 Topps design.
#72 - Ian Kinsler, Rangers
I know everyone is thinking it, but they're not saying it. This is merely a representation of 1971 Topps, not a duplication. The font for the team name is not the same, probably because they have to squeeze in that "TM".
#67 - Justin Verlander, Tigers
Best card in the two packs. And I don't follow the Tigers at all. That's how tremendous these packs were.
#118 - Desmond Jennings, Rays
Topps used the 1980 Topps Pirates color scheme for this Rays card, as the Rays weren't around in '80. Not sure why it chose the Pirates.
#169 - Michael Morse, Nationals
I think the world would be a happier place without Nationals cards.
Think about it.
OK, this is where I blew my stack:
#209 - Will Clark, Giants (SP)
Out of all the short-prints I could have pulled, it had to be this one. I would've rather pulled whatever 10 Yankees that are listed as short-prints.
I am baffled by the adulation for Clark on the blogs. He was annoying as hell. I guess that's what happens when kids from the '80s grow up. We get movies based on toys and board games and love for shrill-sounding, black-and-orange losers.
I can't wait to get this card out of my sight. By trade or by open flame.
#31 - Joe Morgan, Reds
Not getting any better.
#81 - Adrian Beltre, Rangers
Joe Madden makes a cameo.
#133 - Mark Trumbo, Angels
After finishing off that rack pack, I couldn't wait to open the loose pack as I figured it had to be an improvement.
What I got was 3 Giants out of the 8 cards.
You're not seeing any of the cards.
OK, here's one.
Topps considers this sticker a "card," by the way.
And I know what you're saying: "Awesome. It's a Willie Mays sticker!"
And my response is, "yeah, yeah, what Dodger are you going to trade to me for it?"
I'm probably not going to buy any more of this than I've bought of Gypsy Queen or Bowman. I do like it better than those two products, but it's just not that well-executed, and even though it looks better than Lineage, there are no '75 minis to distract myself from the other stuff.
So, gee, Night Owl, you're awfully cranky today about these cards. Are they really THAT bad? Nobody is forcing you to buy them, you know.
Yeah, I know all that.
But here's the thing:
Nobody is sneaking around your big-box store secretly slipping in cards of teams you hate into packs that they somehow know you're going to buy.
It's not paranoia if it's true.