Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Blaster power rankings: 2018 Heritage


I started these blaster power rankings posts a year ago in an effort to count how many cards of each team I pull out of blasters. I've always theorized that I pull more teams than others, and although I'm sure that's just coincidence, I thought it'd be fun for me to start a running total.

Little did I know that 2017 would become the year of The Great Retail Shelf Blaster Blight and that blasters of virtually every desirable product would disappear for months and never return.

I ended up conducting just four blaster power rankings posts and not buying much more than that. I didn't get a representative view of what teams I was pulling, and even though I announced my intent to open a blaster of Archives or Bowman next on a couple of the posts, I never did, because there were no blasters to be found!

So, I'm starting again. I will calculate the contents of this 2018 Heritage blaster -- nicely purchased with my Valentine's Day gift card -- and add it to the total from last year.

Who knows, maybe this will be the last blaster I get to open this year before the Otani Plague wipes out store shelves in the months to come. But I do have hopes of continuing this throughout 2018.

When I last left the BPRs, the Cubs were leading with 19 cards, one ahead of the White Sox, Tigers and Dodgers. For ranking purposes, inserts count less than base cards for Heritage because I like to continue the fantasy that this is a "set-builder's set."

Let's see what 2018 has for me:

Blaster Power Rankings: 2018 Heritage



1. NEW YORK YANKEES (7 cards)

This is how I expect every last blaster I purchase to go. Just a relentless stream of Yankees pouring forth from the box. As nauseating as it is to see all those pinstripes in one place, at least my expectations were confirmed this time.



2. TORONTO BLUE JAYS (6 cards)

I am enjoying the spring training shots on these cards and some others (people in the background or not). I find I prefer the Florida spring training shots to Arizona ones.



3. LOS ANGELES DODGERS (6 cards)

Yay! I still am able to pull Dodgers out of blasters in 2018 (this wasn't always the case)! Two inserts here, which I don't mind as someone who is really only interested in the Dodgers from this set. The World Series Kershaw, which I've pulled once already, will go toward my mission to complete that WS subset.



4. OAKLAND A'S (5 cards)

How about that? There are five A's cards in Heritage! I'm not going to pretend I know all these people.



5. ARIZONA DIAMONDBACKS (4 cards)

The black-and-white portion of the Goldschmidt card shares just as much territory as the color profile, which is weird and not very 1969y.



6. MILWAUKEE BREWERS (4 cards)

Notice that Brandon Woodruff is turned to the side, otherwise Topps would have shrunk him down so the circle didn't cover the logo.


7. PHILADELPHIA PHILLIES (4 cards)

This is a Walmart blaster, therefore my first look at the Heritage decals. It's a pretty good one to pull. I think it's an actual decal, too, wrapped in plastic.



8. SAN DIEGO PADRES (3 cards)

The Padres have rookie stars. Yeah, OK.



9. SAN FRANCISCO GIANTS (3 cards)

Only Cueto isn't a dupe. Ugh.



10. NEW YORK METS (3 cards)

The deckle-edge card is Amed Rosario. There is injury panic all over this guy already. Gotta love the Mets.



11. ATLANTA BRAVES (2 cards)

Julio Teheran is a short-print. I think I've already pulled it.



12. BOSTON RED SOX (2 cards)



13. HOUSTON ASTROS (2 cards)



14. MINNESOTA TWINS (2 cards)

Now there's some spring training happiness!



15. PITTSBURGH PIRATES (2 cards)



16. MIAMI MARLINS (2 cards)



17. TEXAS RANGERS (2 cards)



18. ST. LOUIS CARDINALS (2 cards)


19. BALTIMORE ORIOLES (1 card)

20. CLEVELAND INDIANS (1 card)

21. CINCINNATI REDS (1 card)

22. CHICAGO WHITE SOX (1 card)

23. SEATTLE MARINERS (1 card)

24. TAMPA BAY RAYS (1 card)

25. COLORADO ROCKIES (1 card)

26. LOS ANGELES ANGELS (1 card)

27. CHICAGO CUBS (0 cards)
28. DETROIT TIGERS (0 cards)
29. KANSAS CITY ROYALS (0 cards)
30. WASHINGTON NATIONALS (0 cards)

Interestingly, two teams that did very well in last year's BPRs, the Cubs and Tigers, were shut out.

Here are the updated BPRs, adding this blaster to the four compiled last year:

1. Dodgers - 24
2. Yankees - 22
3. Cubs - 19
4. Tigers - 19
5. White Sox - 19
6. Blue Jays - 18
7. Mets - 18
8. Braves - 17
9. Cardinals - 17
10. Giants - 17
11. Red Sox - 17
12. Astros - 16
13. Pirates - 16
14. Royals - 15
15. Reds - 14
16. A's - 13
17. Phillies - 12
18. Brewers - 11
19. Diamondbacks - 10
20. Mariners - 10
21. Twins - 10
22. Nationals - 9
23. Rangers - 9
24. Marlins - 9
25. Padres - 9
26. Rockies - 9
27. Orioles - 7
28. Angels - 6
29. Indians - 5
30. Rays - 5

WOOOOOOOOOOOO! THE BIG MARKET TEAMS ARE ON TOP JUST AS AMERICA ALWAYS INTENDED THEM TO BE. TOPPS LOOOOVES THOSE BIG SPENDY COLLECTORS!!!!!!!

Of course, as a Dodger fan, I am not complaining at all.

These BPR posts often produce some trade requests. I just want to mention that I think I've sent out two card packages in the last month. That's not saying I'm not trading, I'm just way, way, way, way, waaaaaaay backed up to the point that I fear I might forget someone because we settled on a trade two months ago and I'm no closer to getting it done than I was then. I'll get to you all -- the ones I remember anyway -- but March is definitely not the time for me to be trading.

Also, this is where I mention what kind of blaster I might open for the next BPR post. Given last year's track record, maybe I'll just wait and see what happens.

I'll surprise you.

17 comments:

  1. "THE BIG MARKET TEAMS ARE ON TOP JUST AS AMERICA ALWAYS INTENDED THEM TO BE."

    YEAH CAPITALISM!

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  2. What is up with Amed Rosario's autograph???

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  3. Ugh that's the first black-jersey Giants card I've seen. One of the things I've liked about this year's Heritage (I note this in my write up which will post on SABR *sometime*) is how so many of the cards are white/grey home/road jerseys. All too often the spring training photos lend themselves to spring training colored tops which ruin the whole throwback look. Speaking of. Did the Pirates change their caps this year or is that outlined P the spring training look?

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    1. I believe you'll find that most of the pictures in Heritage (of players who have not since switched teams) were taken last spring (usually on Photo Day, where the players usually wear the regular season home uniforms). And, yes, the outlined P seems to be something they were sporting at that time (though not all the time). I have no idea what the Pirates are wearing on their noggins this spring but in neither case would I expect it to carry over to the regular season, anymore than those ugly monstrosities my Mets wear in the spring with a running Mr. Met on the front or the nearly as ugly blue cap with orange brim. Ugh.

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  4. Gawd, exactly why I DON"T buy blasters.

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  5. Too many Yankees! (That would make a great blogger name)

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  6. I agree with The Angels in Order. I do think the cards look good grouped by team.

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  7. I'm curious if any of the photos in this set are real? It really looks like almost all of these photos were taken indoors during MLB Photo Day against a green screen and then the background was dropped in (sort of like what they do with the driving scenes on old TV shows).

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    1. A lot (not all) of the backgrounds on this year's cards are legit. They shoot on Photo Day, but they do make the effort to shoot outdoors. Last year's Heritage, almost none of the backdrops were real. Weather plays a part in that. Lighting and shadows offer some clues as to which are which. Perspective offers another. Just from this group of cards, I'd say the Blue Jays, Twins, Brewers, and Diamondbacks are real. Giants probably real. The Yankees, Padres, and Braves look fake as all heck, to me, and I suspect they are. I know that, this year (shooting for next), there were "behind the scenes" spots around the web showing players posing outdoors. But, like N.O. says, with no players (or life of any kind) in the background, they're all gonna look fake. I don't think today's photographers understand that (which is kinda ironic since that's the "heritage" of baseball card photography). Speaking of next year, I sure hope we get some shots of players picking out bats; 1970 Topps was great for that.

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    2. At least the Topps photographer is starting to move around, year-by-year, at each Spring Training facility. For years the Yankees posed on Home Plate in their stadium and the backdrop always looked like a prison due to the press boxes looming over everything, year after year. Unless that was just a digital backdrop, in which case it was entirely stupid.

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  8. I pick up one or two blasters a year because Seattle gets very little love. It is easier just picking up the singles.

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  9. Aw, man... My blaster didn't have a 1978 Alan Ashby sticking out of the side! I need to shop at Walmart more.

    I was about to complain about the samey-sameness of the photo cropping, everybody from the waist up, rookies from just below the letters and up... when it struck me. I wonder if they're forbidden from - or disinclined to - covering/cropping cap and jersey logos? Maybe it's a licensing requirement, maybe it's someone at Topps declaring "We're fully licensed, don't let anybody forget that!" This might further explain the All Star cards. Still, would it kill them to include the occasional head & shoulders shot, even if only on the rookie/leader cards?

    You're not going to like my complimenting a Giants card, but I like the Ty Blach... it's fairly wild and crazy for a Heritage shot.

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  10. You probably didn't pull any Tigers because a good half dozen of their cards are in the Short Print checklist. You would think that in the one year your favorite team is guaranteed to suck, after finishing 30th of 30 the year before no less, at least they wouldn't have a bunch of their cards in the SP portion of Heritage.

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  11. Ohhhh. Set that Teheran aside if you will. I've slowly been putting together a send for you that I think you'll love.

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  12. Wow. Nice to see the A's ranked that high in something. Even more impressive is I actually recognize five out of the six guys. I guess Zippy has trained me well.

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  13. Snark all you want at the Padres rookies (and "stars" is pushing it, I admit), but those guys are more likely to see some big league action than most rookies.

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  14. That Thames card is beautiful.

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