The 2015 baseball card season is winding down and we're beginning to see info coming out for 2016 products. One such product- 2016 Topps 1 Baseball- introduces a departure from the norm for the flagship release. For the first time, it appears, the base cards from the iconic company will feature full-bleed card fronts. And as a Topps team set collector, this change might just lead to a change in my collecting habits.
Fuji had a post yesterday where he confessed to being loyal to Topps and I, too, have echoed that sentiment for years. My stance has always been that if the company were to lose its MLB license, I'd be done with current card team sets. Topps was the only game in town when I began collecting and they have always stayed pretty true to their schtick, if you will. Even when I left the hobby in the early 2000s, I still bought the Braves Topps team set for the first two of those years. But times are a changing, and with filteration used on most of the photography in the flagship product and now a borderless card... it may be time to make a switch.
As I've pondered whether to make a change, the obvious question is whether or not to continue with team sets. Archives and Heritage are both certainly worthy of carrying on the tradition, with one small exception: the common man.
One of the great things about Topps' flagship product is that it still contains many cards of the common man. As much as all of us would like to see our team field a fantasy team each game, it's not going to happen. Unless you're the Yankees, of course. Anyway- as a team set collector, I want to have commons included in my collection. Without them, the Braves (or any team, for that matter) aren't truly being represented as they should. Like I said, this is real life- not fantasy baseball.
So in the meantime, I guess I'll just hold my breath until the 2016 Topps release date and determine how strong my convictions are. Do I travel the road that has all the mom-and-pop stores, or do I take the exit that leads to the area with all the big box stores? Time will tell...
No, this isn't Rush's Tom Sawyer- although the opening guitar certainly sounds like it.