Friday, March 28, 2014

Where the hell is Heritage?

Exactly two weeks ago, Topps released Heritage to the masses. Or so they made you think.

Case breakers displayed the very latest cards, the very latest hits and short-prints, and everyone got high on the 1965 design. Later, people who ordered boxes received their shipments and displayed them on their blogs.

Around that same time, folks in certain parts of the country begin to find Heritage in stores -- and, yes, in the usual places that I've mentioned before. Dallas, Texas, always seems to have the latest cards before everyone else. Still more Heritage appeared on blogs in those favored locales.

Then it arrived in other parts of the country and people began to notice: "Hey. Where are the blasters? Where are the blisters? It's just rack packs."

This was an understandable question, but I couldn't question it because I couldn't find even a rack pack in any Target or Walmart in my area of Upstate New York.

This week, evidence of Heritage blasters finally showed up in -- guess where? -- Dallas, Texas. So, they DO exist.

Meanwhile, I took a trip to Target today, confident that at least some rack packs of Heritage would finally be there. My Target seems to restock their card shelves with new product late Thursday or on Friday, so I fully expected Heritage to finally show its face when I appeared Friday evening.

I confidently entered the card aisle and was greeted by the usual Heritage looseys and blasters -- from 2013.

Still no 2014 Heritage.

Thoroughly disgusted, I went across the way to Walmart because it HAD to be around SOMEWHERE. I mean come on, I know I live off the beaten path, but it's been two weeks now and there's a blasted interstate that runs right through town for crying out loud.

When I got close to the door at Walmart, an employee stopped me and the others I was with. "Hey guys," he said. "I'm really sorry, we had a pipe burst and the store is closed. Sorry about that."

I stood and stared at him.

"Pipe burst?" I thought. "What's that a euphemism for -- 'we don't have Heritage either'?"

That's probably what it was. He saw me coming. He knows how long I've waited. And he knew there was no Heritage in the store. "Oh, god, here comes Night Owl, he's going to freak."

So they came up with "pipe burst" so I didn't rearrange the store.

I momentarily thought of going to the Walmart north of town, but there were people with me and they didn't need to go through that debacle.

So here I am back home wondering what the hell is going on with Heritage.

I don't necessarily need Heritage. I don't plan on completing the set, or I would have ordered a box of it. And I'm not super eager to collect all the Dodgers or I would have ordered them online already.

But opening some packs of Heritage is one of my favorite things to do with cards each year. It's better than opening the first base cards in January and it's just as good as opening the first packs of Allen and Ginter in the summer.

It's an important product for a lot of collectors -- some view it as more important than the base set.


What the hell?

Meanwhile, the Topps folks have already moved on from Heritage. They were promoting Opening Day last week and now they're promoting Museum Collection (like there's a chance that's going to hit my area Target). I'm sure they'll be talking about Gypsy Queen in a couple of weeks all the while acting like everyone is up to their ears in Heritage by now.

I hate to whine for this long but doesn't this seem suspicious?

First no blasters and blisters for a long time and then some places aren't even getting any Heritage more than two weeks later?

Did Topps make some sort of deal with hobby stores to release Heritage there, far in advance of retail?

Was there some sort of mix up with the folks who ship Topps product to different parts of the country?

Was there a fire at the factory?

Did the monkeys pull the wrong lever?

This is one of the better years of Heritage I'm talking about here. This isn't the 1966 design that people are going to have to suffer through next year. This is pretty much the pinnacle of the 1960s designs right here.

But yet, all I have to show for it is that Upper Deck Vintage knock-off Tommy Lasorda card from 2003.

God, I hate whining like this and I'll probably pay for it by spotting some Heritage in the store tomorrow, but damn, does this seem odd?



  1. Our local Shopko had rack packs over a week before Target and Wal-Mart had them. Actually, I don't even know if Target and Wal-Mart here have them. I stopped looking after the fifth or sixth day in a row. I just started going to Shopko.

  2. I bought one rack pack... I think it was ment for you: four Dodgers, two of them Clayton Kershaw. There was also a Carlos Quenton, which I destroyed in your honor.

  3. I haven't seen a single blaster (or loose pack) either yet (and I've checked two stores separated by about 60 miles since I work in one town and live in another). I did manage to find two lousy rack packs (and my wife somehow managed to find me another two). I hate rack packs though because they are too pricey for what you get..but I will say it's better than nothing! Maybe Topps forget to stock northern PA and most of New York state? I've got an interstate running through my town too...and the snow has finally (mostly) stopped so that's no excuse.

  4. I have yet to find any packs, blasters or rack packs here in NYC. I've checked my Targets and Kmart and nothing. It stinks cause I already made room in my Heritage binder for this years Yankees team set.

  5. I went to one blue parallel store when Heritage came out. Nothing. Checked another one a week later. Nothing. Found a couple rack packs in a red parallel store a few days after that. Haven't checked since.

  6. It's just total dysfunction on Topps' part. I think Topps probably still moves more cards through retail than they do hobby stores, so they're idiots to intentionally make any deals. Not to mention that Excel (Target) and MJ Holding (Walmart) are probably flipping shit since a lot of their revenue depends on having new products on the shelves when the hype is hot. I'm betting we see a lot of 2014 Heritage retail packs showing up in those repack boxes by this time next year.

  7. i first saw retail hit my local target about a week ago and i was just there recently to buy 4 loose packs. they had a ton of those. i have yet to see any blasters.

  8. If it makes you feel any better, my old LCSes in Japan already have Heritage in stock.

  9. Heritage rack packs were in my local Target this past Wednesday. They were not there the Wednesday previous. No single packs (one of which is what I would have bought had they been there) and I didn't think to look for blasters.

  10. Can I get an amen? Nothing here in Houston, although I haven't checked in the last day or three. I'd settle for a few rack packs just to open some.

  11. I had retail Heritage almost three weeks ago, but I have not been home for the last two weeks to post about it. I bought one rack pack and got a Kershaw New Age Performers which is on its way to you at the moment. I doubt I will be buying anymore because I am just tired of Heritage SPs beyond the Rockies and I am not one of those types that can just collect the short set.

  12. I picked up a 2014 Heritage blaster tonight at my local Walmart (Phoenix area). This was the first time I saw them though.

  13. Haven't seen any blasters in the Delmarva area, either. Both Target and Walmart locally have rack packs and, earlier this week, one of the loose pack "gravity" boxes appeared. But the thing that irks me the most is the absence of the blister packs with the three black-bordered cards. I live for those things (in a baseball card sense) and I fear that they might not be in the plans this year.

  14. To make it worse, the rack pack price is $6! Didn't it used to be $5?

  15. From what I read, the distribution does seem a little strange.
    We have it all, and Opening Day in north central Ohio.
    Come on over, you can stand in line for Cedar Point too.!

  16. I checked my Target twice this week and found nothing... not even rack packs. I'm better off looking for them at the flea market tomorrow.

  17. While I splurged on my hobby box last week, as of this week, I still have not seen retail packs in K-Mart or Target. Topps hates you/us.