Tuesday, October 2, 2012

What short-print? I don't see a short-print

This is Topps Update's super short-print card of Matt Kemp. For the second consecutive set, Kemp is the subject of an SSP. (No. I still haven't acquired his "Beast Mode" SSP. Yes, I still want it).

So far, the Dodgers have FIVE super short-printed cards in Topps Update. The other four are the players involved in the big trade with the Red Sox -- Adrian Gonzalez, Josh Beckett, Carl Crawford and Nick Punto.

That's five cards I'll likely never see in my collection. If I get lucky, I'll end up with one or two ...eventually.

So, how do I feel about that?

Well, the super short print falls under that heading of: "if you let it bother you, it will."

When I learned of the ever growing number of short-prints in this year's Update, and how many of them were Dodgers, I started to feel myself cramp up and begin to get cranky inside. My mind started forming sentences with the words "boycott" and "monopoly" and "scheming money-grubbers" in them.

The truth is, I have been collecting since I was 9 years old -- getting close to 40 years now -- and one of the greatest moments in collecting for me has been obtaining a card of a star player who has just been traded to or acquired by the Dodgers. Think Richie Allen, Jimmy Wynn, Manny Ramirez, Jim Thome. Hell, even Don Stanhouse.

But with these SSP's, I likely won't have the chance to gain the first card of Gonzalez or Beckett or Crawford (sure to be photoshopped, by the way), or any of the others. These cards will be exclusive to people who have all sorts of cash to blow on cards, the cardboard rich, and that makes me all kinds of ...

And then I stopped myself.

It's not worth it.

I'm a big boy. I can wait until 2013 to get a card of Adrian Gonzalez. It'll probably be a better card than whatever Topps scrambled to get for the SSP version anyway.

I'm an adult and part of being a grown-up is being able to adjust to the changing ways of the world -- card world included. Going on and on about how SSPs are an Injustice To the Set-Collector is just not very cool. No, I don't like it. But I don't like a lot of things that happen in the world. I have the power to change very few of them. I pick my battles, and the rest I let slide in blissful ignorance. I don't have the power to change collectors slobbering over SSPs. So ...

What short-print? I don't see a short-print.

This is the best way to handle the problem, as far as I'm concerned. Because not only do you not let it eat you up inside, but you get to ignore Topps' little games, too. And Topps doesn't like being ignored. Like any corporation, it absolutely hates being ignored.

That makes me feel good.

So, when I get a little bunched up over the SSPs, which is sure to happen when someone on some blog shows one with a great big LOOK WHAT I GOT!!!! ONLY $9.99 SHIPPED!!!!, I'll remember that it doesn't matter.

It's just best off being ignored.

I'm not gullible enough to think that "if you ignore it, it will go away," because there are too many collectors who fall over themselves when it comes to SSPs.

But I do believe "if you ignore it, it won't bother you anymore."

And that, in my very small way, is all I can do.

Saves me money on antacid pills, too.

(EDIT: There is a sixth Dodger SSP. Kershaw has one, too).


  1. Don't even get this Bryce Harper collector started.

  2. When 2013 cards come out everyone will forget about the U&H SSP cards and you should be able to find them at that time for way less. Patience my friend, guys like us collect for the long haul and good things come...

  3. kemp is also lurking on cc sabathia's short print.

    i'll probably bite on these, but i'm in no hurry. i don't fret over them, but i don't ignore them either since i count them (at least so far) towards my topps dodger team sets.

  4. I actually have never really payed much attention to sp's or ssp's. Do they even count towards completing a whole set anyways?

    In my attempts to put together sets from 2010-2012 I have ignored all sp's in general. I'm not sure if others do this or if most do this. I guess you would ignore these if you were a master set builder or something.

    I guess what I'm trying to say is the same thing you are...."What short print? I don't see any short print."

  5. This is why I hate Topps and their license monopoly. We din't have to deal with this in flagship while Donruss, UD and Pacific were still around. Topps can get away with anything now.

  6. I remember deciding that I wasn't going to collect Oriole team sets anymore when the UD Ben McDonald hit and the dealers were asking $75. I was pissed for a day and then got past it. Funny, the world kept turning without me having all the Oriole cards.

  7. These are probably the lamest sp's I've ever seen. Baseball players in suits, very appealing.

    If you haven't already, check out Stalegum.com. He has a countdown clock for when Topps monopoly will end. And with it, all these BS short prints.