As if the previews for this product werent bad enough, the initial breaks of the tins that have replaced Classics have shown that there is a major disappointment brewing. Not just among people like me who had extremely low expectations to begin with, but also among the collectors who were really looking forward to it. The singles are now live on eBay, most of which are a collection of ugly rookie leather autos, some possibly damaged rookie patches, and one good element that Panini has never been bad at.
First, starting with the most troubling part of this release, the Rookie Recruit autographs all look to have flaws. Im not talking about a nicked corner or chipping on the edges, im talking about a printing situation down by the player name on each of the cards. It looks like a crease, but is most likely just spots where the ink didnt get onto the card in the right way. Aside from the fact that these cards AGAIN use the awful and lame passport theme for the fourth set this year, these are some of the biggest rookie hits in the product. If I actually bought any of this crap, I would be extremely pissed if I pulled one of the cards and it was damaged. Knowing Panini’s customer service has gone down the toilet lately, they better get prepared for a ton of calls. Even if it is supposed to be part of the card, it looks like damage, and that isnt a good thing.
As for the now highly publicized gameday souvenirs set, I saw some parts of this subset that make me laugh. Because you are now tying a swatch to an actual game, there are a lot of games where players have bad production. There are a few jerseys Panini was forced to use from games where the guys played terrible. I am perfectly fine with tying a jersey to a season, but when you do it to a game itself, you risk this laughable situation. Its not anything you can control, but it decreases the novelty when the player didnt do well. Similarly, putting the score and quarter on the front of an already busy design is a BAAAAD idea.
There is actually one part of this product that I really like, and its really no surprise that its a signed base card. The base cards for Timeless treasures are pretty cool, and the auto versions are that much more impressive when compared to the rest of the set. I may keep an eye out for my favorite players, as I think the old style patches theme for the design works nicely.
I also very much love the hall of fame autograph cards, but they are just an extension of last year’s set. There is no change in the design to honor the new class, and that is a disappointment. The on card signatures are the only non-rookie hard signed cards of the year, unless something changes with NT, and to just redo the ones from last year is a cop out.
Overall, its pretty easy to see how short this product comes up, just by looking at the signed leather box hits. Cheaply done, hideous design, and completely worthless idea that no one will value when collectors want to sell. I saw case breaks yesterday, and I didnt see one smiling face when all was done. Classics may have been tired, but this is beyond horrid.
Here are some examples:
Kyle Rudolph Rookie Recruits Auto Jersey – Check out in the dark part of the nameplate on the bottom middle of this card
Christian Ponder Rookie Recruits Auto Jersey – Here too