Tuesday, May 28, 2019

Topps High End Goes a Bit Light on Twins

One of the first premiere products of the 2019 season, Topps Definitive Collection releases at hobby stores May 29th. The one pack box, containing eight cards, will set you back just over $1,000. While the price tag is certainly steep, the contents inside can absolutely match that shock value. Unfortunately for Minnesota Twins fans the checklist leaves a bit to be desire.

There are no true base cards in this product. A base autograph relic set is where your “standard” cards fall, and it’s composed of 46 subjects all serial numbered to 50 or less. This is a product heavy on game worn memorabilia and it’s displayed in many different forms.

Minnesota’s first offering comes in the Defining Moments Autograph subset. Rod Carew, one of Topps longstanding Twins signers, is in the 37-subject set. These cards are also serialed to 50 or less. Carew lends his signature to the Legendary Autograph Collection as well, and these are a bit more limited at 25 or less. In total that gives Carew collectors roughly 75 totals cards in the entire product run.

From there things get sparse for Minnesota as the final seven cards are all of the 1/1 variety. A Harmon Killebrew cut signature can be had, as well as two separate Joe Mauer offerings. Joe has a single patch card as part of the Definitive Patch Collection, and then lands his namesake in the Nameplate Collection. Each letter represents a 1/1 offering and could entice someone to put together what would be an expensive five-card run.

Every year Topps Definitive Collection is one of the most visually appealing sets put onto the market. For the Twins to only have three subjects, and only one that contributed anything, it’s a tough checklist to get behind. Carew has autographs in almost every product, while Killebrew cuts are the only thing we’ll obviously be able to see going forward. Not getting Joe, Torii Hunter, or some other signer in the product is unfortunate.

One of the toughest things about any high-end set for Topps catering to Twins fans is in wondering where they turn. Carew is all but played out, but Minnesota’s two biggest names have both since passed. Mauer could come back to be a regular signer, Hunter is cycling in more, and Morneau may even be an interesting get. In any big product though, would the return of Buxton, Sano, Rosario, or some other current player be satisfying enough? Going into the season that answer was probably no, but the tides are turning.