Monday, November 2, 2015

Update Impressions

The usual trade bait and snide comments that come with a major Topps release.

2015 Topps Update made its way to the shelves recently while most of us were still watching the playoffs. The $9.99 rack hanger boxes were the only configuration available at my Target as of last Thursday, so I picked up a couple. Everything you see here is up for grabs aside from the Cardinals stuff, so feel free to claim away in the comments.

Apparently these retro quasi-parallel cards are retail exclusives. I wish the card material itself had more of a retro feel. Instead, this is just another weird colored border card, albeit with a throwback uni in the photo, which is a nice touch.

The First Home Run parallels (in, I assume, three flavors again depending on what kind of packs you buy) are now entering the phase where you have to dig up a Kole Calhoun photo from just two years ago. So that's something. Topps decided to restart the card numbering scheme at FHR-1 because they are horrible monsters.

Both of my boxes contained gold parallels, though they were both of the roster filler/reliever variety. Calixte tallied 3 plate appearances this season with the Royals. I suppose this could have been one of them?

In a set lousy with All-Star base cards, I'm not sure that Topps needed an All-Star insert on top of it all. Update usually has an All-Star jersey insert set, so I'm guessing that these are just like non-swatch versions.

I'm glad that vest uniforms are becoming extinct.

Congrats, by the way, to the Royals for winning it all. I'm sure that lifelong Royal George Brett is proud. (Confirmed.)

More of these. I like to be able to look at something and have an idea what set it came from. With these, I'll never know.

Jumbo toiled for many years in the minors, so it's cool to see him get the Topps Update treatment. The expanded set (400 cards!) means even more relief pitchers than before made their way in, I bet.

I'm sure Topps will be milking these Jeter thing for as long as they can.

Hideous phrase, hideous design, hideous font. I'm guessing Boggs's chicken thing is involved in this set somehow?

Whatever Instagram filter was used on this photo makes that streak on Napoli's shirt look even more disgusting than it should.

This was a really cool moment captured here during the All-Star festivities. although the card makes absolutely no mention of it.

I've got zilch to say about this one.

Isn't it more of a rarity to pull a 2015 Shawn Green card?

This is just one of the base cards, but I pulled quite a few of these Rookie Combos. I'm not sure if these players have their own cards in the set, too, or if this is sort of a throwback to the multi-player rookie cards of the '80s and early '90s. I'm hoping it's the latter, though it would be a lot nicer if there was some stats... bio info... anything on the back? There's about two sentences.

More of the same.

I wonder what Topps sent Fleer/Upper Deck in exchange for the rights to this design. Some old gum, perhaps?

Finally, here's the Cardinals cards that I pulled. The Cardinals don't really have a big rookie to hype in this set, so it's mostly the standard bench guys who were late acquistions, relievers and fringe roookies. Last year at this time, Oscar Taveras was heavily featured in this set and we were all still shocked about his sudden passing.

Broxton just had his option declined by the team today, so... yeah, that's where we're at with him.

Cooney got to jump into the mix after Adam Wainwright went down early in the year, but he's now blocked by the surprisingly successful season Jaime Garcia had. Garcia will be back in 2016, which seemed rather unlikely a year ago at this time.

It's probably just Small Sample Size Mania, but Maness seems to be a completely different pitcher when he comes into the game with men on base, as he has worked his way out of a lot of jams. When he comes in to start an inning, he's been extremely ordinary. Being that he's a reliever, this will probably completely change next year.

Villanueva was mothballed more than anyone on the team this year, but he did a thankless job capably as he has done for the better part of his career. He filled the long relief role. Not a lot of teams even have that role anymore. I was a little surprised that he wasn't up for a spot start or two considering the injuries to the rotation and the need to give some of the younger pitchers a rest, though.


  1. Yup. The Boggs one is the chicken thing. I'm sure I'll get around to posting my one jumbo pack eventually.

  2. Would you mind putting that Rizzo throwback aside for me? I'd also be interested in those two All-Star inserts if they're available as well. Thanks!

  3. That Rizzo photo looks just off enough that I briefly considered whether Topps had airbrushed a throwback uniform onto him for inclusion in the set. That would have been a laugh. I do like the photo they used for the Albert Pujols All-Star card. It's a shame Topps didn't take the opportunity to write something about Champ Pederson, though.


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