The 2019 Topps Heritage set’s homage to the company’s 1970 set includes a run of cards mimicking the original Sporting News All-Star cards. It turns out they didn’t just ask to borrow the name.
Topps and The Sporting News worked together for the first time in several years to create the cards, rekindling a partnership that had been in place off and on from 1959-2011. The history of Topps All-Star cards also included a SPORT Magazine sponsorship for several years.
Sporting News, which began publishing in 1886, has a long history with baseball coverage. Once called The Bible of Baseball, it was a staple on newsstands and mailboxes each week for generations. It transitioned into a glossy magazine-style format and in 2012, became digital only. Nevertheless, the cards bring back some of the nostalgia older fans will appreciate.
Twenty players are included in the subset on this year’s checklist. Interestingly, several of them will play for new teams in 2019.
Senior Baseball Editor Jason Foster wrote Thursday that Topps’ Sporting News All-Star cards highlighted a shared history between the two companies.
“We’ve both covered baseball in our own ways for a long time. We’ve watched the game evolve,” he wrote. “We’ve seen records fall. We’ve witnessed Hall of Fame careers. We’ve also seen our industries change, and we’ve tried our best to adapt to those changes, and to our customers’ needs. Sporting News and Topps are cut from the same cloth in a way, which is why this partnership makes so much sense.”
Foster pulled a Bryce Harper All-Star out of a pack he purchased at Target after writing his column, then had a little fun after Harper signed with the Phillies Thursday afternoon.
Wow. Topps was fast with an update card. pic.twitter.com/GyKfWt5Luj
— Jason Foster (@ByJasonFoster) February 28, 2019
Most of the All-Star cards can be found for $1-2 on eBay.