It’s like a summer ritual. As the baseball All-Star Game approaches, Topps is ready to release Series 2 of its flagship baseball brand. That same scenario takes place next year, as the 2017 Topps Series 2 baseball set will debut the week of June 14, roughly five months after the debut of Series One.
2017 Topps Series 2 Basics
As usual, a hobby box will contain 36 packs, with 10 cards to a pack. Expect the price for a typical hobby box to be in the $48 to $55 range, depending on the retailer. Jumbo boxes will hold 10 packs, with 47 cards to a pack.
Topps is promising an autograph card or relic per hobby box; there will be one autograph and two relics in every jumbo box. In its sell sheet, Topps notes that Series 2 will pay tribute to the greatest major-league all-stars and to the game with Fourth of July inserts, autographs and relics.
Base Set and Parallels
Just like the 2017 Series 1 set, Series 2 will contain 350 cards that will include rookies and established veterans. There also will be a generous amount of parallel sets. Rainbow foils will fall one in every 10 packs and gold parallels will be numbered to 2017. Other parallels featured will be Vintage Stock, numbered to 99; black (66); Mother’s Day hot pink (50); Father’s Day powder blue (50); Memorial Day (25); hobby exclusive Clear (10); and 1/1 platinum. Negative parallels will be hobby and jumbo exclusives.
2017 Topps Series 2 Inserts
The inserts in Series 2 will be a blend of familiar ones and debuts. The popular First Pitch returns with the famous, notable and quirky folks who walked out the mound to cap pregame ceremonies. Topps Salute also returns and will fall one in every four packs. These inserts will use shots from baseball milestones, commemorative games, curtain calls and ceremonies. Red versions will be numbered to 5, while there also will be 1/1 platinum cards. Some collectors could pull autograph versions, too.
The 1987 Topps baseball inserts, complete with that wood-grain border and the familiar red, white and blue stars, will focus on All-Stars and rookies. Does anyone remember the ’87 All-Star Game? Tim Raines, who hit a two-run triple in the top of the 13th inning and was named the most valuable player in the National League’s 2-0 victory in Oakland.
Expect to pull these inserts every four packs; there also will be red parallels numbered to 25 and 1/1 platinum versions. There also will be autograph versions, printed on wood stock such as maple (numbered to 25), ash (10) and birch (1/1 hobby and jumbo exclusives).
Inserts making their debut will include Major League Milestones, which, as the name implies, looks at some of the major milestones and baseball events from 2016. Expect to pull at least four in every hobby box. Memorable Moments, also falling one in every eight packs, looks at the past before 2016. Both of these inserts will be autograph and relic versions, an autographed relic card, and also red and platinum parallels. National Anthem inserts will feature those people who gave memorable renditions of “The Star-Spangled Banner” before games. Quick thought — wouldn’t it be cool someday to have a card with a chip in it, so that when you pressed the chip the card would reproduce the singer giving his or her rendition of the song? Anything is possible.
Collectors will find several types of autographs in Series 2, including the high-end Reverence Autograph patch cards. These will be hard-signed cards numbered to 25 and will be exclusive to hobby and jumbo boxes.
Major League Material will highlight impact players and also will have parallels in red (numbered to 10) and platinum (1/1). In the Name relics will include full letter patches.
Topps also will be sprinkling 1/1 cut signature cards throughout the run.
For collectors who buy hobby and jumbo boxes, manufactured relics will use midseason games as a common theme. All-Star Game Logo Patch cards will concentrate on players past and present, while Independence Day Team logo patches will use images from games played on July 4, 2016. Both relic cards will have parallels in gold (numbered to 99), black (50) and platinum (1/1).
If you’re a fan of Topps’ flagship brand, then there is no such thing as the summertime blues. Series 2 will whet the appetites of collectors as major-league baseball barrels toward the playoffs.