Before I jump into the recap of the most recent Affordable Group Break, I wanted to apologize to the readers/visitors of the blog for not posting the sign up posts for this break. I'm up against a move and I have a lot on my plate. At the last minute the box of Stadium Club arrived (much earlier than anticipated) so that helped me make the decision of going on all with the final group break for awhile. I didn't have much time to prepare the posts, or to constantly update multiple sign up posts in multiple places...so I just threw up the posts in the Facebook group. When I resume breaks (September?) I hope to settled in my new home and I will return to posting sign up posts both here and in the FB group.
The first box up was 1997 Donruss Update. I had higher hopes for this box as it had the potential to offer some really nice cards...but you can't always win the lottery.
We did up pulling two silver Press Proof parallels, each from one of the subsets. Andy Pettitte is form the King of the Hill subset while the Manny Ramirez is from the Hit List subset.
Diamond Kings were in series 1 so in their place in the Update set are Rookie Diamond Kings. These are numbered to 10,000 copies. This Todd Walker is 05473/10000. Probably the best card pulled was the Ken Griffey Jr. Dominators. I was really hoping we'd pull one of he micro-etched Power Alley inserts.
Next up was the box I was most looking forward to, 2005 Leaf. It's getting harder and harder to find mid-2000 era boxes that don't cost an arm & a leg. This box said it packed a lot and while we may have fallen short of one of the guaranteed hits, it's hard to complain with the haul we had.
We'll start off with this pair of shiny foil Pedro Martinez. The left is from the Alternate Threads and pictures him with the Red Sox while the card on the right is from the Cy Young Winners set and pictures him with the Expos.
How cool would've have been to pull the autograph version of this Tony Danza Fans of the Game? I've you've watched "Who's the Boss?", then you would know that Tony is New York through and through. This is a nice pick up for the Yankees.
Just like the two Pedros, these Gamers cards have a very shiny silver foil finish on the fronts. It's a good checklist as you can see by the Griffey and Pujols that we pulled.
This Ichiro Gold Stars card also has a shiny gold foil finish, hence the darker image when scanned. The Away/Road inserts fell one per box and have jersey/patch variations. This Frank Thomas is the base card.
What were the chances that we'd pull both the base and die-cut version of the same player? This die-cut Garciaparra is numbered 077/100.
Next up are some of the horizontal inserts, such as this Clean Up Crew of the New York Mets. These also come in a die-cut version.
Cornerstones pair up two key players from the same team, such as Biggio and Bagwell from the Astros. These also come in game used versions with bats and bases!
I wasn't sure what these Sportscasters cards were all about when I first researched the set, but it's a huge set where all the cards are serially numbered, some as low as 5!
Mussina 22/35 - Carlton 31/35
Clemente 19/40 - Rodriguez 20/40
Pujols 13/30 - Tejada 42/65
The box promised 3 hits and while we only had two, the first pack delivered a nice start to the box.
Not bad, eh? The 2nd hit wasn't serially numbered, but contained a nice little piece of lumber of the Reds' Sean Casey.
In addition to these hits, we also pulled a few Press Proof parallels. Red were not numbered, while blue were /75 and gold was /25.
Overall this box was a blast to rip. Loved the two hits and all the low serially numbered cards were a nice addition. I'd love to get my hands another box of this for a future break.
The night wasn't over yet though as we had one final box to rip...2021 Topps Stadium Club. Prior to opening this box my only exposure was a group break that I participated in. As usual, the photos were top notch and made thumbing through each pack so much more enjoyable.
I would have loved to have had the time to scan some of the better images from the cards pulled, but for now at least we'll just have to settle for looking at these 8 red foil parallels. We did pull two black foil parallels, but my photo was horribly blurry...I apologize for not posting. I remember one of black foil was a Reds RC while the other was Juan Soto.
Long time fans of the TSC brand will remember these awesome double sided Superstar Duos. This one had Vladimir Guerrero Jr. and Dante Bichette Jr.
Trimuvirates features a die-cut design for 3 players of the same team. Think of them as puzzle pieces if you will as all three will slide together to form a wider image. The Blue Jays' were well represented yet again with Nate Pearson.
I'm not sure what this set is called, but it brings back some of Stadium Club's previous designs. Boggs, Canseco, Jeter, not a bad 1-2-3 punch.
Virtual Reality calls back to 1995, but where the originals were just parallels of the base set, these new VR cards are their own insert set.
It appears the Stadium Club Chrome cards fall one per box - ours was Luis Patino, RC for the Tampa Bay Rays.
One of the draws to Stadium Club are the two promised autographs. They are on card, which is nice, but the majority of the autos I've seen pulled early on are kinda of lack luster in my opinion...including the two from our box. Maybe Edward Olivares will turn out to be a stud for the Royals?
I'm really going to miss what has become a Friday night tradition for me. It'll be weird not hosting breaks, but I do need a break. Hopefully by the time we resume I'll be settled in and set up in my new "man cave". I do have two hobby boxes of 2021 Topps Big League that I've already ordered and paid for so whenever that product is released I'll have those waiting in the wing. I appreciate everyone's support, whether you have participated in one break or multiple. Please don't go anywhere...I will be back!