Although Triple Threads wasnt the originator of the booklet card, it was the product that made it mainstream in the card industry. Most of the time, these booklets ended up being some of the worst looking cards in the product, and in my opinion, still arent where they could be. This year, Topps has brought out the big guns, using booklet cards to promote the chase in a product that people expect big things from. There are bat barrels and bat knobs, as well as jumbo patches and autos to round out a product full of cards that I honestly couldnt care less about. Although I will not be throwing my hat in the ring for some of these cards due to my feelings on the product as a whole, they are getting MAJOR attention:
2012 Triple Threads Bryce Harper Jumbo Patch Auto Book 1/1 – This card must be exciting as the first Harper card to feature this big of a swatch with this many colors. Its awful that its a sticker auto, because the ghosted white box behind it definitely takes away from the design of the card.
2012 Triple Threads Jason Heyward Jumbo Patch Auto Book 2/3 – Letter patch autos have lost their luster as of late, if not only because the cards arent that exciting without much room for a design. This example is somewhat better, as the letter gets its own side of the book. However, similar to the Harper, the sticker really takes away from the whole aesthetics.
2012 Triple Threads Jose Bautista Jumbo Patch and Laundry Tag Book 1/1 – I am not a fan of these cards and never will be. They are not All Star game used, despite what many collectors may think. They are warm up used, which puts them on a level above the stupid Pro Bowl crap that Panini shoves down our throats in football, but I still dont really see the appeal.
2012 Triple Threads Cal Ripken Jr Booklet Jumbo Patch – No idea why this card sold for the crazy price that it did, especially when there is no auto on these cards. There are autograph parallels of these that look more balanced on the right side of the book, as these look like the jumbo swatch window is WAAAAAY too far down.
2012 Triple Threads Mike Schmidt Bat Knob 1/1 Booklet – These cards are actually the coolest of the lot, but that isnt saying much. I think an autograph on the player side of the book would have made these cards that much cooler. They will sell for huge money no doubt, but I think there was a missed opportunity.
Everyone has their opinions on Triple Threads, but when you charge this much per box for 1 good hit, the content needs to reflect that. Although I think these jumbo patches are popular, they are popular because they are ridiculous patches, not because they are well presented. Hard signed autographs, better looking design, and a different approach is all necessary to truly capitalize on some of the potential we have seen in other, more well conceived products. Its almost like Topps resigned themselves to the fact that some people will hate it just because it says triple threads on the card, and some will love it – no matter how it looks. Why put in the effort then, right?