There won’t be a Hall of Fame induction ceremony this year, but Topps will celebrate the career of Derek Jeter with a new partnership that will bring fans and collectors along for the ride.
The company announced a multi-year partnership with Jeter on Thursday, one that includes his involvement with both new and existing Topps product lines.
Topps says it will collaborate directly with Jeter to enhance its physical, digital, and e-commerce lines. Jeter will not merely appear in Topps’ products. He is expected to also be heavily involved in the creative process surrounding them and will make appearances for the companty.
Topps says that Jeter will have influence on products and electronic initiatives. Those will include the Topps.com website and digital cards on the Topps MLB BUNT mobile app.
The move is another in Topps’ recent move toward player partnerships where the athletes are actively involved in the creation process.
“This is a partnership unlike any Topps has been involved in before and we can’t wait to begin collaborating with a great baseball mind,” said David Leiner, Topps’ Global General Manager, Sports & Entertainment.
The partnership coincides with the news that Jeter’s autograph will be included in a Topps Now product line set to launch on May 2. The cards offered there will highlight his biggest moments and milestones but collectors can expect to see a lot more of Jeter on Topps products and at Topps events.
As part of the May 2 release, fans will also have an opportunity to have their questions for Jeter incorporated into new BUNT offerings. Fan questions can be submitted via social media and Jeter will answer some of them.
Jeter will also be featured in Topps Transcendent and has agreed to appear at a meet-and-greet event tied into that product.
Topps says collectors will get to see Jeter’s influence on numerous upcoming Topps products and experiences, such as the upcoming Captain’s Collection. He will also take part in the One of One Club. That ‘first-of-its-kind’ Topps experience will give collectors the opportunity to create their own 1-of-1 Jeter card. Those cards can then be signed by Jeter at a One of One Club event.
“Topps has been a great partner for a number of years,” Jeter stated in a Topps news release. “When they came to me with the idea to provide unique content and experiences, I was very interested in being part of this exciting new venture and twist on tradition. Collecting baseball cards is something that connects lots of people and generations. That sense of community is so valuable, now more than ever.”
The partnership is a timely one for Topps. The five-time World Series champion and 14-time All-Star was officially elected as a member of theHall of Fame this year. His induction, however, will not occur until 2021, as was recently announced due to the cancellation of this year’s Hall of Fame Induction Weekend.