Finest has been live now for a few days, and we are starting to see some of the bigger hits pop up on eBay. This year, much to my surprise delivers some nice content on top of a tremendous look to the cards. I really do think that this year’s product improves on many aspects of last year’s product, including many of the elements that could have even been considered failure.
Here are some of the bigger cards:
My favorite cards have to be the on card autographs that made their debut in 2011’s set, and are back with a vengeance this year. Additionally, with this year’s design more friendly to signatures, they just look that much better. The curved minimalist approach with team colored borders adds a ton to the aesthetics of the design, only made that much more appealing by great photo choices.
Moving onto the patch autos and the jumbo relics, both improved greatly this year thanks to better planning of the card’s spaces. They both fit the overall theme of the set a lot better, and the team color composition does wonders for cards that may have otherwise been awkward. The patch autos have the best improvement over 2011, most impressively with the change to more distant photographs. Last year’s were close up and somewhat goofy, where these are much more sleek and understated.
I also think that the atomic refractor, with the on card signatures look really good, especially compared to the disastrous ones from last year. The design is a lot more sympathetic to what I thought the cards should look like, especially with moving away from crazy die-cutting that takes away from the appeal.
As for the drawbacks, the numbering on a lot of the cards is WAY to high to still be included. When cards are numbered higher than 500, its better to just let the mystery stay a mystery. Numbering cards to over 1200 is like calling attention to the fact that the pull you just had is not at all special.
I have similar feelings about some of the new refractors, as they can be distracting in a lot of the examples I have seen. Its one thing to have colors and chrome style reflection points, but to use this pulsar texturing is well past the point of potentially causing seizures. That’s bad.
My finest box was a blast to open, and I was really impressed with the way it turned out. As I said before, even the Finest Moments cards are cooler looking this time around, and that is a victory in itself. I pulled a Brock Osweiler Patch Auto Gold Refractor /75, and a Jarius Wright Jumbo Auto numbered to eleventy billion or $texas depending on which way you look at it. I watched a few other breaks, and saw a lot of reasons that the SP list will damage this product’s capabilities to sustain value. If Luck, RGIII and Richardson were numbered higher, and the others were numbered lower, I think more people would pay 120 bucks a box instead of 105, and still be satisfied.
Regardless, Topps has to be satisfied with the way this turned out, and as someone without a rookie to collect this year, I am too.