Saturday, April 2, 2016

Playing the Fool

Falling in love is such an easy thing to do, and there's no guarantee that the one you love is gonna love you... How can you help it when the music starts to play and your ability to reason is swept away... Everybody plays the fool, sometime. There's no exception to the rule. Listen baby, it may be factual, may be cruel. I wanna tell ya- everybody plays the fool. ~ The Main Ingredient's Everybody Plays the Fool

Where do I even begin?

I guess the first thing to do is to admit that I love the cards Topps produced between the years 1964-1967. Despite this affection I never attempted to put those sets together. While the cost of putting together sets that are 50 years old is certainly a factor, the main reason is this: I wasn't alive back then and didn't have the pleasure of watching those guys play. And let's face it, a large part of collecting for most of us (or, at least some of us) is the nostalgia it brings. Hard to feel all warm and fuzzy inside about players we don't know and didn't see play. 

So then along comes Topps Heritage, producing sets that pays homage to those sets of their glory years, but with a twist: modern players. Okay, now we're talking warm and fuzzy feelings.

But I gave up on those feelings of intoxication years ago when I gave up on set building and, other than a couple of packs each year (and Braves Heritage cards), have largely ignored the sets.

Well, the music started playing recently when my wife surprised me with a couple of packs -and my ability to reason was, as The Main Ingredient's song goes, swept away. 

Okay, so your heart is broken, you sit around mopin'- cryin' and cryin'. You say you're even thinking about dyin'. Well, before you do anything rash, dig this. Everybody plays the fool, sometime.

Yes, yes I do.

It started innocently enough with those packs but I knew that if Topps continues to ruin the flagship brand (I've wavered on my opinion of 2016- I'm currently in 'don't like it' mode), my interest in current cards would be dead. It was the older sets that caused me to have a love for the hobby and I'll tell you this- if I were not a collector and stumbled across 2016 Topps, I would not become a collector. Just sayin'.

This lost interest, this broken heart, if you will, caused me to do something rash. I ordered a set of 2016 Heritage (#1-425) and 2015 Heritage Update (#501-700) off eBay. 

I realized that with the 2016 set I'll have to try to track down the 75 SPs to complete the set, and I figured it might be worth a shot. Lots on eBay, singles at shows and online, and trading might help me accomplish this. At least the 2015 Update set was complete! And for only $10!! 

Well, it didn't take long to discover that I was playing the fool. In fact, it was shortly after the cards arrived on my doorstep Thursday afternoon.

Last night I read an article Cardboard Connection had posted which previewed the 2016 Heritage Update set, noting how it would, once again, be released as a traditional release and feature 25 short-prints. Say what?!! I had to read that last part slowly. 

Stop that smiling- or you might just get a Noah fastball upside the head.

Yes, I did not realized that the 2015 Heritage set had the traditional release, let alone the short-prints. I figured it was a boxed set and the only reason I got it so cheap was the lack of the autographed card. And now I find myself mopin' and cryin'. 

I had fallen in love with Heritage, but I'm beginning to think that Heritage doesn't love me.

This newly discovered information caused me to once again act rashly. I went onto eBay and bought a couple of rookie cards of two of the top players from last season: Carlos Correa and Francisco Lindor.

I bought them through the same seller so I'd be able to save a little money with combined shipping. It wasn't until after I paid for the items that I discovered that Correa isn't one of the SPs and is included in the set I had already received. *Anyone have any SP's they want to trade for the Correa once I receive it?* 

I with I could say that this is just a late April Fool's Day joke. But it's not.


I don't need a special day to play the fool. Any day will do.


  1. At least you had a good excuse to post an underrated song? In all seriousness, I think we've all been bitten in a similar way - at least once.

  2. Topps has gone way overboard on the short prints. Not every set needs them, but it seems every set has them (other than Stickers). Even Opening Day has photo variations that, for completeness, need to be in the set if you're an obsessive like most collectors.

    It really is obnoxious and seems to be meant only to create buzz after the release of the set for people to feel like they might get a return on "investment" by buying the cards.

    Memo to Topps: most of us are *collectors* and not "investors".