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

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Saturday, July 27, 2013

Some Recent Pickups and Japanese Releases

I had been so busy for the past two months (and more) that I've had no energy at nights or on the weekends for much of anything. That isn't to say I have been sitting on the couch during all my free time. I've made my way to the card store a few times and kept up on the latest BBM releases. Plus, I've been digging through boxes and binders at the Takadanobaba store to find older inserts for the type collection.

So some big news: I broke 50% on the Japanese card type collection recently! BBM is over 50% and Calbee is still over 90% (18 cards missing). Here are some recent grabs from Osaka, Nagoya, and Tokyo area shops.
 Tuffy's an underrated star because he's a foreigner, but I'm always happy to add his cards to my type collection.
 BBM wasn't immune to gimmick cards in the 1990s. This Run Producers card is made of plastic.
 BBM is on the parallel bandwagon, but it only does partial parallels. Some inserts get parallels too - this card is a promo parallel of an insert set from 2010 BBM. Generally, BBM parallels have foil and holofoil versions these days.
 This insert has multiple parallels - I think this is the #/100 version?
 Shigeo Nagashima is the Babe Ruth of Japan, in that he is the most popular and well-loved of all of Japan's players. Of course, Sadaharu Oh is the home run king.
 BBM has released a bunch of inserts over the years. This one at least has a fairly unique background image.
 This is a card from a preview release. In 2001 BBM issued a fairly large preview set that included two inserts - this is from the two card MVP insert set.
 Century Best 9 is the other preview insert, and looks pretty nice.
 This foil autograph card was a "special" card in a box set - box sets here come with an autograph, relic, or limited insert.
 I think this card was issued as a promo for the Premium Malts old-timers game set, though it could have been a special insert. Non-Jersey cards are a great addition to my type collection because they're much cheaper than the actual relics.
 Here's another! I have been finding these cards a lot more frequently lately.
 This is a serial-numbered holofoil parallel from a Golden Eagles team set.
 BBM's premium releases come with a couple inserts each year, just like every other BBM pack release. In 1999's Diamond Heroes, the inserts were almost identical except for the title of the insert.
 This card from 2000 Diamond Heroes has a couple layers - the grey text is actually on a back layer, with the photo on a top layer.
 This card is die cut into the shape of an H and it has a marble-textured surface. I think BBM really liked Fleer in the late 1990s.
 This 2011 Lions Classic card has a gold foil signature.
 Touch The Game replaced Diamond Heroes, and has been replaced with Genesis. This is an insert.
Signature parallels were very common in BBM sets in the mid to late 1990s; foil signature parallels are still found in BBM releases.
I find myself buying more foreigner cards lately.
 Here's another example of a foil signature special card. In addition to the non-relic relic cards, I've found a lot of cards that look like promos issued for various events.
 Okay, let's look at some newer issues. This is the Lions team set base card. BBM seriously seems to be listening to my critiques, because several cards have minimal designs and borderless photos! I may put together or buy more sets this year than last.
 This is the BayStars base card. Alex Ramirez is wearing what appears to be a poorly designed soccer jersey.
 The Fighters set has a solid border, but the design is nice!
 Kenta Maeda got a special set in 2010, and I found some special memorial cards - this one has a fireworks-style holofoil background.
 This version doesn't have a holofoil background. Note that this card claims to be a promo card.
 Die cut cards are hard to find here at decent prices/ This is another promo bonus card for a box set release.
 BBM issued a "throwback" set this year called BBM Classic. They used the 1991 design for the active players, with backs that match the 1991 set as well.
 The last cards in the set are a sort of update to the All Time Heroes release, and have retired players.
 Team set parallels have foil backgrounds, and usually some sort of design instead of the original photo background. Compare this to the Lions card above.
 And the Fighters have some sort of fire design in the background.
 The Classic set has an insert set that copies the Rivals insert from several years ago. There are left and right side versions, of course.
 The Lions set has a very Panini-like insert. But unlike Panini, BBM doesn't just replace the Lions logo with a relic (or is it the other way around?). The relic and autograph sets tend to have unique designs.
 While BBM's base sets look nice, this year's inserts are fairly simple. They aren't ugly, just uninspired so far.
 Another insert without much going on...
 Okay, I haven't forgot about Calbee. Series 2 came out recently, and one of the subset/insert card sets is titled Exciting Rookie. It's very normal, and except for the card numbering it fits in with the base set.
The Speed Star insert set stands out, though you won't actually find it inserted into any packs. It is/was available through a special offer only and has holographic foilboard.

That's just a taste of the hundreds of cards I've picked up in the past couple of months! I hope you enjoyed.


  1. Have to admit being amused by several of the inscriptions on the cards--"Polaris of the Team" and "Johnny Ace of the Spirit". The first does actually make some sense (biggest star of his team), but the latter has me scratching my head.

    Thanks for posting the BBM Classic card--hadn't been aware till now this set existed. Love retro design cards, even if those early BBM designs were pretty godawful.

    Glad to see your schedule cleared up enough to allow you time for posting!

  2. Greg: Thanks for the comments! I'm planning to address your comment on the other post with its own post - probably tomorrow.

    Yes, the titles make me laugh at times. Engrish can provide a lot of entertainment - misspellings, misues of words or grammar, or college-vocabulary formal language translations are used frequently on cards, advertising, and most t-shirts.

    For Johnny Ace of the Spirit, there is a little bit of breakdown that can help. Johnny is Tomohiro Kuroki's nickname, a morph of "Joji", and of course Ace refers to his great pitching ability. As for Spirit, well, I don't know. The card was part of a boxed set released to commemorate Kuroki's retirement, and he played with the Marines. The term spirit could refer to him staying with the Marines his entire career, his energy on the field, a reference to a Marines slogan, or anything else. (If someone else knows, chime in).

    I'm going to try to post more about new releases. I know NPB Card Guy does a pretty good job of announcing sets before they come out and he has a great summary at the end of the year.

    1. Correction: I want to do a little more research for your other comment before I post my response.