Friday, January 20, 2023

Have we not learned anything, Topps?

 I recently got a blaster of 2022 Topps Heritage High Number cards. Nothing earth shattering, but I did get a Bobby Witt, Jr. rookie and a card I was more excited about since it was a Tiger, the Spencer Torkelson rookie. Among other cards I got from the pack was an Eduardo Escobar card. I figured as a Free-Agent signing, he didn't make it into earlier 2022 sets, kind of like Freddie Freeman, Kris Bryant, or just about all of the 2021 Free Agent class. 
I was filing the card away in my huge 5,000 ct box (actually 2, now) of cards to put in binders in the future, and when I came to the 2022 Topps Heritage section of the Mets, I found another 2022 Topps Heritage Escobar. 
I would've bet my paycheck that it was a dupe, but this was the first I had opened of the product, and I couldn't recall getting one sent to me in a trade recently. I studied the photo, position, and everything on the front, and it was exactly the same. When I flipped over the back, everything was the same except for the card number. Well, the legal mumbo jumbo on the bottom may have been different. I just didn't feel like looking (which would've involved purchasing a telescope). 
I thought the guys at Topps had been getting better about 'Tuckering' in the past few years (only 1 or 2 in 2021, and only Gerardo Parra in 2022 Series 1 & 2), but I guess not. I'm not a Heritage junkie, so I wouldn't have even noticed this had I not pulled both cards, but if some scrub for the Mets got 2 cards, who knows how many times it happened in the set this year. Not only that, but the same photo on the front, same stats, write up, and comic on the back. How lazy!  I was hoping Fanatics would put a stop to that. Judging by the real 2023 Topps sell sheets (and not the ones I tried to pass off as real), they aren't going to be much different than the guys running the company pre-2023 (Rainbow-Gold parallels??!!). 

Topps did something like this before, but all the way back in 2007, 16 years ago. Remember that Gary Sheffield Tigers card you pulled in Series 1 and Series 2?  

Yeah, that one? The one with the same photo on the front for BOTH cards? The one with the same bio and stats on the back? The one with only a different number?  Topps, we have to learn from this. This is going to be a rich persons hobby if you keep treating base cards like that and have some 18-year old just out of his first year of Santa Monica Community College start proofreading the checklist. They probably have the Topps checklist on one side of the screen with Tik-Tok videos open on the other while their phone is open to Instagram. Heck, I actually proofread Topps checklists as one of the main parts of this blog with the creating missing cards, and I still mess up. Not this blatantly, but in just about every checklist, I've missed a guy or had to take a name out that shouldn't have been there. Just put in a little time or have a serious fan do the job. I'd do it for free (or for a few blasters). It's things like this that make me want to get a Twitter account just so I can blast Topps. While I'm not doing anything drastic like that, I urge you if you have a Twitter, are friends(?) with Topps, and feel like doing so to please share this post or just call them out on having basically 2 of the same card in the same brand. 

In other news, I have finished inputting the Marlins and Astros Topps cards into my TCDB account. With all I've talked crap about with Topps, you should find it fonny that I've also set a pretty lofty goal that I may not even finish in my lifetime, but it might be fun. I would love to complete every Topps/Topps Traded set.  Every base and Traded card from 1951-the current year.  'How are you going to acquire the '52 Mantle when you are just a baker?', you might ask. 'How are you going to complete some of these sets when commons from even 30 bucks are running a dollar a pop?'. Well, I never said it was going to be easy. I have a few things that might make this goal get achieved a little easier. First off, I don't really care about the condition a card is in. As long as you can see the picture on the front and most of the back, I'm fine. If I could get a whole 1952 Topps set that had backs like Nick's Andy Pafko, I'd be happy. I'm sure I can find some '70's commons in dime boxes, and maybe even some '60's cards in cruddy condition, and I'll scoop up them all. I also think I am going to let reprints count in my quest. As long as they have the original backs. I think older sets like 1952 Topps, 1953 Topps, and 1954 Topps will get finished quicker if I let the reprints take the place of some of the real cards. It will also save me lots of money on expensive rookies, as many of the key rookies have reprint cards and I have a ton of them as well. 
When I remember my teenage years collecting, I remember wanting some of the older cards but not even knowing what the backs looked like as the internet was just coming out when I was finishing up high school. In 2001, I was 18, and Topps Archives came out. It reprinted many of the key rookies in Topps sets, and I purchased probably 2 boxes worth of packs of the set, and finally got so many of the cards I envied, and finally saw what the back to a '56 Topps card (and so many others) looked like. So for many of these sets, the '01 Archives cards will suffice, and I'll just store them with whatever set they go in. 
As you've probably read in some of the comments of previous posts, I also plan to head over to Ocala with my master list and see what goodies I can dig from John's doubles boxes. With that and probably some trades on TCDB and here, who knows, maybe I'll get close. I am happy to accept any donations, whether stars or commons, 50's or '90's cards. If you don't want to donate to the project, I'd be happy to trade. With 8 out of 30 teams finished, and a few specialized binders left, I estimate I am about 15-20% done with entering Topps cards into TCDB. After that, I'll make paper lists of what I need from each set, and then perhaps put them in a folder or binder to take with me to shows and stuff. I'll probably make pages for each set on my Wantlist, but this will be a ways down the road. I guess for starters, I have a pretty good chunk of the 1986, 1987 (3 cards missing), 1988, 1989, 1991, 1993, and 2001 Topps sets done, hardly have anything from 2012-2014 and pre-1986, and I have completed the 1990, 1992, 1994, 1995, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, and 2018-2022 Topps sets. I am doing Traded sets as well, and have the 1985-1992, 1994, 1995, 1999, and 2018-2022 Traded/Update sets completed. I had ordered a complete 1993 Topps set, but I am somehow missing 3-4 cards from it already. I don't know if it got put into a box somewhere or what, but I'm going to re-check some doubles boxes just to make sure. 

I kind of want to be known as the 'Topps guy' for my collection as well as the customs I've done. Rest assured as soon as these cards are entered, lists made, and some new trades started, that I will be back making customs again. Thanks if you decide to help me with my quest to get every Topps base card from 1951- the present. 

Thanks for taking the time to read my latest post.


  1. I do know that another Met, Starling Marte, also has the same card in regular Heritage and Heritage High Numbers. If there are two, there probably are others.

  2. Good luck with this ambitious project!