Thursday, April 10, 2014

2014 Topps Series 1: My top five

The final 4 cards for the set arrived today with the last of my Sportlots purchases from this past weekend. This might be the fastest I've completed a set since I started the blog.

My standard M.O. for selecting the top 5 is by going through the set twice, and pulling out the cards that strike me as interesting as I go.  I usually end up with anywhere from 10-15 cards that I really like, and from that smaller group I whittle down to the top 5.

This time, I only found 8 that I really stood out for me.  The honorable mentions this time go to Nick Hundley (the tongue), Nate Schierholtz (great diving catch), and Chris Getz (double play/potential kick to the groin).

So, without any further babbling, here are the 5 cards I thought the best in Series 1.   Feel free to disagree.

#5--  194  Joel Hanrahan

I just read that Hanrahan is going to hold a showcase sometime during the next couple of weeks for teams that may be interested in his services.  Boston unfortunately got the worst of the deal with Pittsburgh (as a Blue Jays fan I'm secretly smiling), but if he can rebound to the point where he left off with Pittsburgh, then some team is going to be very lucky.  This card showing him signing for the fans was an easy choice for me, as cards that show players giving a little something back to the faithful have always been a winner in my book.

#4--  8  Coco Crisp

Better than the Oscar Gamble cards of the 70's?  The green and gold A's colors, the fantastic afro neatly trimmed.  Great look, great card.

# 3--  326  Khris Davis

It looks as though the ball is in the glove, it's very hard to tell though.  Great photo of man meets wall.  Ryan Braun's suspension helped launch this guy's career last season, and 2014 has Davis hitting over .300 so far. 

#2--  212 Jason Heyward

I can sympathize with those who weren't happy because they couldn't see Heyward's face on this card.   But this is one helluva shot.  Does he catch the ball?  Does he hit the wall?  Full extension, eyes on the ball.   Fantastic.  This would have been #1 for me if it wasn't for the next card...

#1--  42 Mariano Rivera

July 28th, 2013, Mariano Rivera comes trotting in from the bullpen with the game tied 5-5 and throws a 3 up 3 down inning on 12 pitches.   The Yankees score in the 9th to win the game. 

I don't like the Yankees, and I never will.   But for me, this card pays a great tribute to the man who will probably be the best closer I will ever see in my lifetime. 

At least Topps got it right and gave him card #42 for his swan song.

And that, is my top 5...

thanks for reading, Robert


  1. I wouldn't argue with any of your choices. Does it say something that your short list was only eight cards? Could Topps do better? Overall I haven't been impressed by their photography.

  2. Coco forever, Mariano never!

    The Brian Dozier and the orange gatorade bath #221 is probably my favorite non-Coco card.

  3. I give the Mark DeRosa card an honorable mention too. Fun at the ballpark!