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

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Friday, December 29, 2017

2017 BBM Infinity

Until last year, BBM's efforts in multi-sport sets were basically limited to the Real Venus women-in-sports sets. However, the 2016 set Masterpiece followed the same idea as Allen & Ginter or Goodwin Champions, just with a modern design - about half of the set is baseball, with the rest devoted to members of other sports.
 Not everyone likes this style, but I'm a fan. So I was happy to see they were bringing it back this year with Infinity. Each 5-card pack is 400 yen, while 20-pack boxes are $80.
 The base set has 112 cards. #1-42 are baseball, with the remainder featuring stars of other sports. Cards 112 is a checklist.

There are three insert sets. The rarest is All the Glory, a 9-card metal set - yes, the cards are made of metal. I don't have a sample image of these; they are redeemable via an exchange card randomly inserted in packs. This set is unique in that several of the subjects are MLB players without base cards, including Yu Darvish and Masahiro Tanaka.
 The most common insert is Brilliant Athlete. This 18-card set has three parallels: Gold Foil Signature #/200, Sky Blue Foil Signature #/150, and Purple Foil Signature #/100. For some reason, cards 8 and 9 in this set don't have parallels.
 Finally, One and Only uses a fancy holographic foil background. These are serial numbered to 50 copies each.
 Autographs can be found in vertical or horizontal varieties; some athletes have both versions while others have one or the other. Print runs vary widely from just 9 copies to 120 copies.
Finally, there are four dual-signature cards numbered to 10 copies each.

As I said earlier, I love multi-sport sets. I collect Goodwin Champions and Allen & Ginter every year. I do have a couple suggestions and a gripe, though.

My first suggestions is to not change the set title every year. I know what to expect if I see Masterpiece or Infinity again, but if next year's set is titled Pinnacle or something else I don't really know what I'm getting. Just stick with one title. (Japan is bad at that - TV shows rarely have second seasons, instead re-titling the show. See "Sailor Moon" "Sailor Moon R" "Sailor Moon S" etc.) BBM did that with th

The second suggestion is to include some non-sport people as well - A&G has celebrities and even things. BBM could do that, too, and expand the size of the base set at the same time. I don't know how hard it is to work with Japanese talent agencies, but plenty of musicans and actors, talento and politicians, scientists and writers could get cardboard.

My one gripe is a pretty big one. BBM took the cheap route with photos, using only one per athlete. This doesn't sound so bad until you realize that same photo was used for the base card, insert, and autograph. This is the reason I got a base set for myself, but didn't bother with any of the inserts other than for my type collection.

But overall, I enjoyed Infinity, and I look forward to whatever it is called next year.


  1. I didn’t know about the All The Glory insert sunset. Very cool.

  2. Very cool product. I'm all about the multi-sport products. Although, I agree with you... they should stick to one name instead of changing it every year.