I like what Archives is all about, even though it occupies a very similar space as Topps Heritage. Where Heritage tackles one year at a time, Archives casts a much wider net. This product takes the yearly concept of previous Archives sets a bit further, buying back old cards and getting them signed by the players. This is one of the first baseball products in a long time without a rookie element, and with a low box price for on card autos, I think its a winner. The big names make it even better than I could have expected.
Here are some of the big cards up so far:
I am a sucker for buyback cards with on card autos. I even love reprinted old designs with on card autos. Archives has all of that for less than half the cost of most products on the market these days. Although they took full advantage of the junk wax era for many of the players, that type of nostalgia triggers a special memory for me. I remember all those packs of cards I opened during this era, and to see them stamped and autographed is cool for me.
There are also some pretty nice vintage cards that they used for this set as well, and that is where the true superstar element resides. Hank Aaron, Sandy Koufax and others have some very nice autograph examples from this part of the product, and they will sell for a ton.
Again, this is not a product that will come with a windfall of expensive hits, but if you want to relive a small part of your history in the hobby with low numbered on card autos, this product is tremendous.
Sure, there is a lot of George Foster, Livan Hernandez, and people like that, but from what I have seen, there are a few good ones per case. With such a low box price, you can bust a few and not feel as though you got killed.
I think that as a concept, Archives is venturing into territory we need to see more from the card companies. Using their history to create new products is well worth a few products each year, in my opinion. Topps has garnered a cult following with reprinting old designs with new players, but we rarely get what Archives brings to the table. I want more, and I want it across all the sports and brands.