2015 Topps Opening Day Baseball – The MLB season is underway and so is the Collecting Season!
Trader's Retreat - Box Break and Review
2015 Topps Opening Day Baseball
By Jim Van Nest
April 9, 2015
Configuration: 36 packs per box, 7 cards per pack – 252 Cards total
200 Card Base set
Parallels: Blue Opening Day Edition, Opening Day 1/1 Edition, Printing Plates #1/1
At Least 25 Base Variations inserted 1:307 packs
14 Card Autograph Set – 1:383 Packs
5 Card Mascot Autograph Set – 1:776 Packs
10 Card Opening Day Stars Relic Set – 1:383 Packs
20 Card Franchise Flashbacks Set – 1:5 Packs
15 Card Hit the Dirt Set – 1:5 Packs
25 Card Mascots Set – 1:5 Packs
20 Card Stadium Scenes Set – 1:5 Packs
25 Card Superstar Celebrations Set – 1:5 Packs
25 Card Opening Day Stars 3-D Set – 1:24 Packs
10 Card Team Spirit Set – 1:36 Packs
Ah, yes. Smell that? The dust of the infield, the fresh mowed grass in the outfield, the overfull porta-potties at Wrigley Field, a brand new box of Topps Baseball cards? The smells of baseball season! Today’s review is of 2015 Topps Opening Day Baseball. Opening Day is a one of the first offerings of the new season and priced at just about $1 per pack, it is easily the most collectible. Before we get into the break and review, we have to thank Topps for sending out this review box! Now, let’s take a look!
Base and Parallels
As a low-end set, the bulk of the Opening Day break is going to be base. The base set is 200 cards and features the best and brightest in MLB. As always, with Topps, the photography on the cards is top notch. For the last several years, this set has been set off by a white border, but for 2015, the border is gone. The color and graphics go all the way to the edge of the card. Each card features the Topps logo and the Opening Day logo. Rookies will have the RC logo in the lower corner. The back of the base lists full career stat lines of the player. In our box, we pulled a full base set with seven duplicates. And when you’re putting down your hard earned cash, the fewer duplicates the better.
There are very few parallels in this set, but they are inserted at a rate close to 1:5 packs. In our box, we pulled seven Blue Opening Day Parallels. These parallels are pretty cool looking. The border of the card is a nice bright blue and the entire card has a metallic sheen to it. Otherwise, the card is exactly the same as the base. In our box, we pulled Salvador Perez, Ben Zobrist, Troy Tulowitzki, Daniel Corcino, Doug Fister, Robinson Cano and Matt Shoemaker.
Aside from top notch quality of cards, one of the big selling points of Opening Day is a large group of inserts. Each pack contained either one or two insert cards. In the 2015 offering, there are seven different insert sets. Two of them are rarer, while the other five are promised at a rate of 1:5 packs.
The first two sets are horizontal sets called Superstar Celebrations and Hit the Dirt. The first set features a picture of a MLB star celebrating a big event in a game. The back of the cards will then tell the circumstance that led to the celebration. In our box, we pulled seven cards in this set. Unlike the base set, on this insert set, the name of the set, the Topps logo and the player’s name are all set off in silver foil. The second horizontal set is dedicated to those who excel on the base paths. Whether they’re big on taking the extra base or they’re straight up base stealers, each card features a great shot of a player “hitting the dirt.”
The next three sets are all vertical cards and are all pretty cool. The first is the Franchise Flashback. These cards have a kinda throwback look to them as well as today’s players in throwback uniforms. The backs of these cards tell you about the game where they wore the throwbacks and give a little history on the particular uniform being worn. In our box we pulled eight of these, so we beat the odds, ever so slightly.
The next set is a huge favorite of the kid collectors out there. It’s the 25-card Mascot Insert set. In this set, the team mascots are featured in the same excellent quality as the players. We pulled seven Mascots in our box, including perennial favorites like the Philly Phanatic and Fredbird. The last of these three insert sets is, in my opinion, the coolest. It is the Stadium Scenes insert set. Each of the 20 cards in this set features photos taken by fans and uploaded to Instagram during the 2014 season. Rather than a player name on the front of the card, these cards feature the name of the fan-tographer (yep, I just made that up. You can use it, if you want). I love the interaction with fans here and I think it would be amazing to see my name on a Topps baseball card, if they chose one of my pictures. Well done, Topps!
The final two insert sets are rarer. The Opening Day Stars 3-D insert set is promised at a 1:24 pack clip, so you can expect your box to have one (maybe two) of these. In our box, we pulled only one. These are a throwback to the old Sport Flix cards of the late '80s and '90s. When you move the card from side to side, you get the look of three dimensions. Very cool, but incredibly hard to scan and make look good (as you can see.) In our box, we pulled Braves emerging star Freddie Freeman. The final and rarest insert set is the Team Spirit Insert set. Promised at only one per box, this 10 card set features players demonstrating their Team Spirit. In our case, we pulled the Adam Eaton card, which features a great action shot of Eaton and teammate Alexei Ramirez getting some super air going up for a high-five during a July contest.
Autographs and Relics
While Opening Day does feature both Autographed and Game Used Memorabilia pieces, they are very few and very far between. We pulled none in our box, but when the stated odds for Relics and Base autos are 1:383 packs, we know better than to expect one. Even rarer is the elusive Mascot Autograph, promised at 1:776 packs. The relics are your basic square piece of game work jersey and all the autos are sticker autographs. If you’re lucky enough to pull an auto out of your box or pack, I can’t imagine you’ll be too upset about the sticker.
Final Thoughts on 2015 Topps Opening Day Baseball
As I’ve said before, I love the Opening Day set. I got into collecting in 1980 when my dad started buying me Topps baseball cards. Today’s trading card market is so autograph-centric now that I think a lot of collectors and companies have forgotten about the kids. It’s so refreshing to see Topps dispelling that line of thought. You can find a box of Opening Day for about $31 + shipping online and I’d wager you can go to any card shop and pick them up for $1 a pack. Hey, dads out there – if you are a fan of collecting and a fan of baseball, do yourself (and your kids) a favor. Introduce them to the world of collecting and to MLB. And there’s no better way to do it that with Topps Opening Day. Help your kids start their love for the game the same way you did. Hardcore collectors looking for super high end relics and/or autographs, this isn’t the set for you. But you should check it out anyway and see if you can remind your inner-child why you got hooked on this hobby in the first place.
If you'd like to see the live break of the box that accompanies this review, well, just click Right Here!
Innovation: 3/5 – this set isn’t about innovation, so I don’t put much stock in it.
Rebuy: 4/5 – there are some great inserts, but you will likely get a full base set per box
Total: 16/20 – I give this a B+/A- as a fantastic low end baseball set
NPN 2015 Topps Opening Day BB
PO BOX 2036
Duryea, PA 18642
Limit – 1 Request Per Household
Postmarked by: June 17, 2015
Received by: June 24, 2015
For our Canadian collectors, your entry will need to be accompanied by the answer to this skill question: 5 x 11 +22 – 6 = ?
Once again, thanks so much to our sponsors at Topps for giving us the opportunity to review this great new product. For more information on all of their products, you can check them out at www.Topps.com. You can also follow them on Twitter: @toppscards. For all the great new trading card updates coming to BOP, be sure to give me a follow as well: @vannestjc. Til next time, take care.