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

Want Lists are located here. NPB Baseball Want List is located here.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Busting a couple jumbo packs of 2011 Topps Update

I went on a little trip to the North Bay yesterday to catch a bunch of sights. My first stop was lunch: swiss cheeseburger and a sampling of seven different beers at Broken Drum Brewery, a little brewpub place in downtown San Rafael. About two doors down is a card store I didn't know about until recently, but apparently it's been there for about fifteen years. Anyway, as I walked around the shop while working a nice buzz, I found a bunch of neat stuff that I would love to have, and some cheapo boxes. Time wasn't on my side so I couldn't browse through, but I caught a glimpse of a jumbo box of Update being packed out. If you didn't read the title, or forgot already, I bought two packs and opened them in the shop.
Now, before I open the packs, a short commercial break. I participated in a "debate" with Robert of $30 A Week Habit - a great blog with a great concept. The topic: Would you take any RC from the 60's & 70's over any current "prospect" RC? The location: The Diamond King - another great blog run by another great guy, Matt. Click on the link and have a read, after you're done with this post! And post your comments on the original post because I'll be reading them too!

Okay, now on to the packs. Each pack has 50 cards, and each pack contains either a Diamond Duos or ToppsTown, one gold Update card, one Diamond Anniversary Update card, one Kimball Champions, one Topps 60, one Diamond Anniversary code card, one cognac Update card, and two Series 1/2 cognac cards. Yes, nine inserts. Plus there's the chance for black, blue sparkle, variations, manuleather patches, autographs, relics, etc. Sketch cards come about 1:750 packs. 

We've seen the base card design, and at least one third of the cards in each pack are All-Star cards. Oi vey.

First pack inserts:
Other than the new parallels, there isn't anything new to be found in the packs. I'll need every one of these cards for the type collection except for the Cuddyer and Padilla (though that's not set in stone - just ask!). I haven't redeemed the code yet - I'll put that in another post.

Base card highlights (no scans, sorry): Prince Fielder's tattoos, Brandon Crawford's RC, Heath Bell sliding into the pitcher's mound, Mark Kotsay's back on Jeff Keppiner's card, Adrian Gonzalez and Robinson Cano back to back with almost identical poses, and Andre Ethier's hitting streak (back: checklist 2 of 5). Oh, and four base cards with dinged bottom-left corners.

Okay, time for the second pack. Base card highlights: Mitchell Boggs (pitcher, Cardinals) very happy about a victory or play in the rain, Lyle Overbay looking constipated, and Yorvit Torrealba being happy about something.

Now for the inserts:
Well, it was nice to get the Diamond Duos and ToppsTown cards out of the way. Like I won't be pulling a bunch of them from rack packs when I try to put together the set. The cognac parallels look more like a bronze parallel. I thought they might have more red tint. I'll be keeping the Reyes for sure, and Burrell or Smoak.
Hehe, Smoak. Any of the above cards could be for trade, though, with the right offer (other than the Kimballs), since the ones I'm keeping are just for the type collection.

But wait, there's more!

In my intoxicated state, opening the packs in the card shop, I couldn't help but laugh as this came out of the pack:
Without doing any kind of checklist verification, I'm guessing this could be the best autograph out of the Next 60 autograph set. Although he was pushed through a little too soon. It's a keeper!

But wait, there's more!

While still chuckling over the Belt, two or three cards later I saw this:
It's 50/50: an eBay 1/1! And of a Ranger, so he could be headed to the World Series. Wait, that's wrong, he was traded to the Cardinals. Still, he could be headed to the World Series.
Anyway, it was a great pack - and the first one I pulled out of the box. Maybe I should have stuck with just the one pack! I guess I'm about a quarter to a third of the way done with the set, so you'll be seeing some rack pack or hanging pack breaks in the coming month.


  1. Lots of fun! Although way too many inserts. I don't think I'll be picking up much of this stuff, so it's fun to look at on the blogs.

    I wouldn't mind the Padilla cognac thing or the Ethier hitting streak card.

  2. Hosmer redemptions are probably the only thing that would beat the Belt. Congrats! I'm still trying to find blasters and not having good luck. It looks like they replaced inserts with more parallels, which I suppose is fine, but why not keep 60 years of topps and dump diamond duos?

  3. I wonder if all the "complaints" of so many reprints over the past two years, plus the interest in the diamond parallels, encouraged Topps to add the other two parallel sets instead of doing another 60YOT or other new insert set. Besides, parallels are always easier than inserts - just change the border color.

    night owl: I'll hold the Padilla for you. If I get another Ethier I'll let you know.

  4. Hello, sorry for suddenly butting in but I was wondering if you were collecting the Update Series. I've got a few I wouldn't mind parting with.
    Also, a little discovery I made is that buying the 10 card packs reduces the risk of getting an All-Star card/insert as opposed to the jumbo packs...

  5. Anonymous: You're not butting in! Feel free to comment any time. I am collecting the set, but I haven't really started yet. Once packs start showing up in local retail I'll buy some more packs and put together a want list. Just keep reading and it'll eventually pop up!

  6. Okay, your blog's been added to my watchlist. Very nice blog BTW...

  7. Thank you very much for your kind words!