Thursday, March 28, 2013

Green vs. blue throwdown

OK, I finally got my hand on some of those blue parallels in Opening Day that everyone and their dentist is endorsing as the parallels of the year.

I wanted to compare them to the emerald parallels in the base set that I love so much and see if they really are inferior like everyone is saying.

Yes, everyone.

Here, look:

I think they might have the emerald Flagship parallels beat.

And here:

i like these better than the emerald parallels from series one.

And here:

The blue parallels are just like the Emerald parallels, only they are blue.  Therefore, they are miles better than the green ones. 

And here:

The Blue looks Waaaaaaaaay better than the Greens.

And now look at the people who prefer the emerald parallels:


But press on, I must, because I just don't think the blue parallels are as terrific as everyone is saying. They're very nice. That's true. Still better than those gold sparkle things last year, without a doubt. But I love my emerald sparklies.

Why here is one now. It's a beauty. Brian from 30-Year-Old Cardboard sent it to me.

Here is a breakdown on what I like about the green parallels:

1. They're green. This was totally unexpected. If someone told me that they expected Topps to come up with a parallel that was green in 2013 Topps, I would look at them with the same expression as if they told me they picked Florida Gulf Coast to make the final 16 of the NCAAs. And then I'd punch them in the ear.

2. It turns every baseball scene into a baseball scene in the Emerald City. I'm all for a parallel that reminds me of the Wizard of Oz.

3. This is the big one: the green parallel theme is continued throughout the entire card. The border color is the same as the background color in the photo. Emerald throughout the whole damn card. Consistency is important to me.

4. The green is very, very shiny. This is also key.

OK, now, let's see an Opening Day blue parallel:

Fine card. I will admit this whole exercise is a little bit like saying, where would you rather be, the Emerald City or the Ice Blue Palace?

But anyway, here is a breakdown on what I like about the blue parallels:

1. The border is blue. That is awesome. No border is better than a shiny blue border. Nothing. I believe I'm on record about that at least a half dozen times on this blog.

2. The player name is not printed in foil. Just like every-day borders, names are easier to read on sparkly borders when not stamped in foil.

3. The blue parallels are serial numbered. For what a card serial-numbered to 2013 is worth.

And that's it.

That's all I like about the blue parallels.

Here is what I don't like as much about the blue parallels as the green parallels:

1. That blasted Opening Day logo and the date stamped above it. Yes, I know this is a requirement for Opening Day, but it's annoying as hell on parallel cards. It detracts from the entire card. And foil-stamping the date? It's OD, peoples!

2. The blue border is not as shiny as the emerald borders. Normally I like dark blue and understated ... when I'm talking about shirts. But these are shiny cards made for people who like their cards shiny. I WANT SHINY. I'm looking at both cards sitting under a light right now. The emerald card is screaming SHINY and the blue one is merely murmuring "shiny," and very unsure of itself. In fact, if I look at the card from a certain angle, I can't even tell that the border is shiny at all. Sad face.

3. Opening Day compensated for fact No. 2 by making the photo background to the Opening Day blue parallels shinier than the borders. But I noticed something when seeing the blue parallels on blogs that I hoped wasn't true on the actual cards -- but it is. The shiny in the background isn't the same color as the border. In fact, it's not any color at all. It's just a wash of water-colored, blurred-out shiny. I like consistency. If Opening Day had continued the blue shiny theme through the background of the photo, like the emerald cards do, then, yup, the blue parallels have the green parallels beat in a knockout.

But this Monet-painting blurred-out shiny? That's a little too late '90s for me.

Maybe that's why some collectors who grew up in that era like them better.

I realize that the way that Opening Day blue parallels are presented gives more separation between the border and the photo than the green parallels. In other words, the border frames the photo better. That's probably why people like them better, too.

But I'll take the greens over the blues anyway.

Also, Opening Day didn't do itself any favors by sending me this card:

Get this waste of cardboard out of my face before I roll it in hamburger and feed it to my dog who is appropriately named Dodger.


  1. The SPCA would come after you if you tried to poison your dog with a Giant.

  2. This is the blue that they should have used for the Wally World parallels.

  3. I'm still on the fence about which ones I like better. I've always been an avid blue-border supporter, but the Emerald ones are, as you said, much shiner and therefore possibly more pleasing to the eye.

    I'll probably have to get a few more of each into my collection before I can render a full decision. I think we can agree that both the emeralds and the blues are pretty awesome regardless, though, can't we?

  4. 1) I like the card without the colored background.

    2) I never really liked the emeralds unless they were on an A's or Rays or Ra's card.

    3)I move that if the greens are rain forest parallels, then the blues are Lost City of Atlantis parallels.

    Also, Topps added a strange little seismograph in the background. Surprised you didn't pick it up.

  5. I'd be willing to give you some Dodgers for that first blue sparkle thingy. Let me know.

  6. For those that don't like the Emerald Parallels, I would be more than happy to take them off of their hands to help me complete the set...

  7. I clicked on this purely because I was convinced you were breaking down the two halves of the 1991 Donruss set. Imagine my surprise!

  8. you think that Heritage cardstock is crummy this year, therefore your opinion is invalid on all things papery.

    Blue is better than green in sparklies and in 1991 Donruss.

  9. Part of the love could honestly be because the blues are newer and unexpected. I haven't had a chance to see the blue in person yet, but I like the non-blue background. If the OD cards have foil numbering instead of the black laser printer then it's a landslide for blue. If not, green may have to win by default.

  10. I don't like any of the sparkly cards, but I have to collect them for my team just the same. I usually like all things blue, but these don't really do it for me. Same goes with the Walmart blue parallels, although that's more of metallic blue-grey if you ask me.