Thursday, June 13, 2024

Stars and Stripes

Set filler needs and patriotic birds from the illustrious blog. 
I suppose I could have saved this post for a certain holiday that's coming up in a few weeks, but I received this package of cards from Night Owl way back in February, so it probably has sat around long enough. Even though I wouldn't consider myself the biggest flag-waving person around, I've always liked the Independence Day-themed parallel cards, especially the ones that Panini puts out under the Donruss branding. Part of this, I believe, is that the cards usually have more of a heavier "throwback" feel to them, using a different (and likely more expensive) card stock similar to what Topps did with their retail (Target) exclusives from 2009 through 2011.

These two Cardinals Indpendence Day pickups are great, but would you believe that I also have a secret stash of these parallels from players on other teams? I don't usually go out of my way to look for these, but I love it when I pull them from a pack or happen upon one for dirt cheap.

Night Owl sent some red birds on other flavors of cardboard, too, like this interesting insert from the 2022 Topps Gallery set. Arenado's been hitting well of late, but he left today's game after getting hit by a pitch. Injuries always seem to happen to the Cardinals just as soon as someone's bat starts to catch fire -- just look at Willson Contreras, for example. Sheesh.

Mosaic is probably my least favorite Panini brand. I'm not a fan of the way their parallels look at all, and they already have all of the chromium bases covered with Prizm, Optic, Select, and probably some other fringe products that I'm forgetting.

I wish these stamps cards from 2023 Topps Heritage were a super-common, one-per pack type of insert, because it would be really fun to peel these off and stick them on things. Like mail! These count as postage, right?

Among the big names to make their debuts last season with St. Louis, it's Masyn Winn and not Jordan Walker who really feels like the most essential young player in the organization right now. In fact, he already feels like the most important player on the entire team right now. I'm still pretty confident that Walker will put it together at some point, although the Cardinals have been rather dreadful at developing players, particularly outfielders, for quite some time now.

There's a blast from the past. I don't know how I don't have all of these blue Walmart-exclusive parallels yet, but I am sure that I am missing plenty.

Considering that this card (and versions of it like this one) is three years old, I am sure I've mentioned what a weird thing it is that they turned this photo into a horizontal card. Did Flaherty spill some spaghetti on his pants or something?

2022 was such a fun season. I just wish it hadn't ended so abruptly.

We're now onto the set-filler portion of the package. Up first is a pair of high number SPs from the low number portion of the set. Does that make sense? I hope so.

Here's a big block of Allen & Ginter minis. I'm guessing most of these were kicked out of Night Owl's mini binder at some point, although the James McDonald may well have been a Dodgers dupe. Many of these are the slightly rarer A&G back version.

Up next is a pair of cards from the very underrated 2003 Bowman Heritage set. Actually, I feel like Bowman Heritage as a whole is underrated. And no, I'm not talking about the recent Bowman Heritage revival that started with using the modern late '80s/early '90s design templates. These two cards show off three of the base card designs used in the set.

The third 2003 Bowman Heritage card in the package also shows off the third base card design. I believe these were a nod to some old test issues for Bowman that were never officially released. Duke Snider's card is joined by a 2004 Topps Heritage card of Andy Ashby, a name I haven't heard in quite a long time.


  1. Pulling those 2003 Bowman Heritage Dodgers taught me a bunch about how weird that set is.

  2. Wow, good to see Vince Coleman on a modern set.


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