Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Blurred Lines

A newer product that Topps has been selling on their website are sets in 5x7 size and limited quantities. At first I thought it was kind of cool, and even picked up a couple Michael Pinedas from 2015 - his base card, and a red version /10.

They make limited quantities of these, and although the size makes for storage nightmares, I am still counting them as cards and ones I have to have of my PC guys.

But, true to Topps form, they are now producing a ton of these various sets. I was surprised to see Tino Martinez ones pop up on eBay. The sets celebrates the 15th anniversary of the 2000 World Series Team. There are 199 silver sets, and 49 gold sets. Essentially, it's a remake of the 2000 Topps team set, with an extra border and World Series trophy in the bottom left.

Naturally, I had to have them, and picked up both on eBay from different sellers. The silver arrived first:
When I got it, I was shocked by the horrid quality. The 2015 base set 5x7s were great. They looked and felt exactly like the regular-sized base cards. However, the quality of this new card is sub par. First off, the card feels flimsier than the 2015 base card 5x7s. Next, the photo quality is atrocious. It looks like they blew up a bad scan of the 2000 base card. The photo is blurry, and there isn't any foil or logo. There is a trace of foil you can see(look at Tino's name), but that is on the photo, not the card. It's weird. The back is just as blurry, and you can barely even read Topps' legal lines at the bottom.

I was so distraught over this, I actually contacted the seller because I thought it might be a fake. I didn't come out and say that, but I started asking questions about it, and browsing his other auctions to see how the cards looked and if there were serial number discrepancies or anything else that migth raise an eyebrow.

Then the gold version showed up, and guess what? Same shitty quality. It's stunning to me that these sets are going for at least $50, and they went out the door looking so putrid. Topps is the king at recreating old designs and cards, so I have no idea what happened here with the quality.
I'm going to keep the cards. I need them for my PC. But I'm going to be very careful before I buy another 5x7 card from these newer sets hitting the market.


  1. I almost pulled the trigger on a few of the newer 5x7's but always talked myself out of them. Such an awkward size that I didn't know how to protect them and store them.

  2. You might hate the subpar quality but you know that Topps is counting their money and going "I know you want it."

  3. I just bit the bullet and bought the Yaz set. I'm happy with it. Buy some two pocket pages the cards fit nicely

  4. I picked up the Rickey Henderson, Tony Gwynn, and Brett Favre Cardboard Icon 5x7 sets during their half off sale and received them during the holiday break. I couldn't believe how bad the quality was. On the other hand, I picked up the 2015 Topps Fire 5x7 set... and those cards are really nice.

    1. It's really weird that the quality differs so much. I almost feel like Topps lost the original card file, scanned a regular version, and blew it up. I don't know what other explanation there could be for such poor quality. The 2015s are flawless and spitting images of the base cards. Yet, 5x7s based on older cards look awful from the few I've seen.