Chaos and Kanji is the blog where I write about my adventures through Japan!

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Saturday, September 20, 2014

New Release: 2014 Orix Buffaloes Signature Edition

A second Signature Edition series was released by Frontier this year; the Lions set came first, and now the Buffaloes have their own set. It was announced recently that the BayStars will get a set next month too.

There are 20 cards in the Buffaloes base set; all are pictured below.






The same photo is used twice on the front (once is monotone in the background) and once on the back. The background is actually very distracting. The cards all have facsimile autographs. The base set is not the draw in this release, of course - these cards are just filler to be packaged with the two random autographs included.
 All 20 cards have authentic signature parallels.
Authentic Signatures is a second autograph set with 16 subjects.
 There are seven players in the Sign of the Winner autograph set. There's also a single Historic Moment Signature card for Kaneko's 1000th career strikeout.
 Additionally, five prospects have cards in the Top Prospect Signatures set.
I am unaware of any parallel versions, though all autographed cards are serial numbered. The checklist is above, in Japanese, including print runs (enlargeable). Each box includes one complete base set plus two autographs for about $120-130.

Friday, September 19, 2014

A Couple 2014 Team Issues

Today's post will be short. I got home quite late and I might be getting a little sick. Anyway, here are a couple local team issues for this year.
 The Lions design uses the same general design elements that I've seen from them over the past few years. Pitchers have gold borders, while others have a different color (I seem to have forgotten if it's blue or silver). There is very little English text on the card, and the backs have lots of white space. 2013 and career statistics are included. It looks like the entire Lions roster received cards.
 The other set was given away at several dates over the 2014 season by the Yomiuri Giants. The fronts of the 80th Anniversary Legends set all have the same artwork you see above.
The backs feature different players, though, with a photo of that player and some career highlights. I haven't been able to verify this for sure, but I think there were 10 cards issued, one for each player displayed in the front image. This set stands out because of that image used on the front; I love art cards and it reminds me of some of the great cards Upper Deck included in its base set in the 90s.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

New Release: 2014 Yomiuri Giants Stars and Legends Box Set

Frontier has released a couple new sets in the past month. While their newest line is titled "Signature Edition" they finally managed to get some Giants autographs into a set with Stars and Legends.
The Stars portion of the set is only 12 cards, and have a blue background on the front. The design is intricate on the front, but the simple back is standard now for Frontier.
 The same design in gold is used for the Legends. Some cards are in color while others are black and white. There are 18 legends in the set, bringing the total to 30 cards.
The Stars cards are paralleled with foil signatures in various colors; I've seen silver and orange. There are also five Rookies cards that aren't part of the base set, using a black background. Each box comes with one foil signed parallel or a rookie card.
 The retired players have authentic signature parallels (using stickers). These come in black (around 35 copies each) and red versions (~20 copies), plus an orange version (~20 copies) with an inscription. As you can see below, the inscription might not actually be legible!
There are also Giants Legends autograph cards that aren't parallels of the base set. These are the most attractive cards in the issue, and also come in black (~35 copies) and orange (unknown print run) versions. One parallel autograph or original autograph card comes per box. Note that I haven't seen print runs on a card by card basis, and with 18 retired players in the issue some players will have lower quantities.

A total of 1500 box sets were released, and retail price in stores is around $120/box. Getting your money's worth in the box all comes down to hitting the right player for your autograph.