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Trader's Retreat - Box Break and Review

2015 Topps Heritage Minor League Baseball

By Jim Van Nest

October 6, 2015

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Hello, good people, and welcome back inside the Trader's Retreat. We've got another exciting break and review for you. This time we're going to meld the past and the future all in one set! We're going to take the Stars of tomorrow and put them on a card design from 1966! Sticking in line with the MLB Heritage set, MiLB Heritage is highlighting the same year. Topps loves to take the new school players and put them on an old school design.

2015 Topps Heritage Minor League Baseball

Configuration: 24 Packs per Box, 9 Cards per Pack

Set Breakdown

  • 225 Card Base Set - 200 Base and 25 Short Printed High number base
    • Parallels: Blue Border, Gum Damage, Orange Border #/25, Black Border #1/1, Printing Plate #1/1

  • 25 Card Minor Miracles Insert Set
  • 50 Card Road to the Show Insert Set
  • 18 Card Clubhouse Collection Relic Set
    • Parallels: Blue Border #/50, Orange Border #/25, Black Border #1/1, Printing Plate #1/1

  • 9 Card Clubhouse Collection Autographed Relic Set
    • Parallels: Orange Border #/25, Black Border #1/1, Printing Plate #1/1

  • 26 Card Real One Autograph Set
    • Parallels: Blue Border #/50, Orange Border #/25, Black Border #1/1, Printing Plate #1/1

  • 9 Card Looming Legacy Autograph Set
    • Parallels: Black Border #1/1, Printing Plate #1/1


One of the things I enjoy about Topps baseball philosophy is that just because players aren't superstars doesn't mean they can't be treated like superstars on their cards. So, when you look at a Topps Minor League set, it looks like the Major League set. I think it's cool for collectors, the players involved and the fans of these minor league teams. They don't have to buy a second rate card set just because they live in Brevard County and love the Manatees instead of Milwaukee and the Brewers.

Base, Short Prints and Parallels

 photo 2015toppsheritageminorleaguebase_zpsn2a8upfe.jpg
 photo 2015toppsheritageminorleaguehighnumbers_zpsgm4stbrz.jpg
 photo 2015toppsheritageminorleagueparallels_zpspcngzqpz.jpg
 photo 2015toppsheritageminorleague1of1front_zpsng8cik7b.jpg photo 2015toppsheritageminorleague1of1back_zps6gm6jbvt.jpg


As mentioned above, Heritage is highlighting the 1966 season this time around and all of the cards in the set are on the same style that Topps used in 1966. It's a simple design with player name, position and team name on the front. These are also a matte finish, as opposed to the new style glossy. I like to point this out because it makes these cards perfect for getting in-person autographs, which is huge in the minor league cities. In our box, we pulled 191/200 (95.5%) of the base set, with two duplicates. That's a pretty nice percentage and a very small amount of dups. We also pulled four of the 25 short-printed high number cards, and that is right in line with expectations. The back of the cards feature some info about the player as well as full career stat lines. At the end of the set, you'll find a small series of three player League Leader cards, highlighting the best of the best in several different categories.

There are not a lot of parallels in this set, but we did pull some, including one awesome parallel. First up are the Blue Border parallels. In our box, we pulled Blue versions of Tayron Guerrero, Austin Kubitza and Clint Coulter. I like the look of the Blue cards; the color just makes the cards pop a little. Our major hit in the box is a Black Bordered Duane Underwood Jr. card. This Black bordered beauty is numbered 1/1!! That's a 1:846 pack hit. Basically, you'd have to buy 36 boxes to land one of these babies, statistically speaking.




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Inserts

 photo 2015toppsheritageminorleagueinsert1_zpspc9zgbok.jpg
 photo 2015toppsheritageminorleagueinsert2_zpsfwhaou6k.jpg



There are only two insert sets in this year's Heritage. Both are horizontal cards. The first is The Road To The Show inserts. Promised at 1:4 packs, we pulled six of these. The cards highlight the road that most minor leaguers have to take to get to the MLB, based on the farm system that they are in. So, Natanael Deldado's card leads us along the trail to the Anaheim Angels and Alec Grosser's card shows us the steps to getting to the Atlanta Braves. The back of these cards gives some details about the player and the moves he has already made on his way to the Bigs.

The second insert set is the Minor Miracles set. Each of these cards highlight a specific amazing feat of the player pictured. For instance, Jon Griffin's card highlights his four-homer game back in May of 2014 and Justin Williams' card details a 30-game hitting streak that spread over two leagues. Promised 1:8 packs, we did pull the three Minor Miracles in our box, as expected.

Relics

 photo 2015toppsheritageminorleaguerelic_zpsbs1lliyp.jpg


As you can see above, the Relic we pulled in our box is the Clubhouse Collection game-used jersey piece of the Orem Owlz pitcher, Joe Gatto. This horizontal card features a nice in-game pic of Gatto as well as a two color piece of one of his Owlz jerseys. I have to say, it's still kind of odd to see new school cards on old school graphics.

Autograph

 photo 2015toppsheritageminorleagueautos_zpsvpojdnh4.jpg


As promised, we pulled two autographs in our box, but better than promised, one of the is a parallel. First up, we pulled the base auto of the GCL Blue Jay's Nick Wells. The sticker auto is well centered and the signature is also well centered and almost legible! They basically put the sticker on the base card, so the back features stat lines instead of a Congratulations. Our second auto is a Blue Bordered auto of the Fort Wayne Tincaps outfielder, Michel Gettys. Again, a nicely centered auto is on a nicely centered sticker making for a very nice looking card. The card is numbered 3/50.

Final Thoughts on 2015 Topps Heritage Minor League Baseball

Priced at $68/box, Topps Heritage Minor League makes for a very affordable and collectible set for minor league fans, or for collectors hoping to get early cards of "the next big thing." I'm not the biggest fan of these throwback types of sets. While I enjoy the walk down memory lane, I'd be fine if they had a Heritage insert set in the main Topps set. A full set of old school is a bit much for me. However, the quality of the cards is the same top notch quality we've come to expect from Topps. The photos are fantastic and I'm still a sucker for parallels. I also appreciate that for this minor league set, they make the cards perfect for in-person autos. Not a ton of innovation here, but that kind of defeats the purpose of a throwback set, doesn't it?

If you'd like to see the live break of the box that accompanies this review, well, just click Right Here!

Ratings

Innovation: 3
Fun: 4
Value: 5
Rebuy: 4

Total– 16/20 - I'd rate 2015 Topps Heritage Minor League Baseball an B-!

NPN Information

NPN 2015 Topps Heritage Minor League Baseball Edition
PO BOX 2036
Duryea, PA 18642

Limit – 1 Request Per Household

Postmarked by: December 16, 2015
Received by: December 23, 2015

For our Canadian collectors, your entry will need to be accompanied by the answer to this skill question: 11 x 3 + 15 – 5 = ?

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.


     


 
 

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