It is the time of the year right after the MLB allstar game when most of us collectors and dealers start to get a little giddy. It marks the release of one of Topps’ most original (er, but done before) looking idea filled with ‘World’s Champions’! It is Topps Allen & Ginter, or TWANG as it’s been dubbed. It is a heavy set to complete in full coming in at over 450 cards total if you include subsets, etc, but definitely one that’s a treat to build. It includes all the top baseball stars and various celebrities and other sports greats that deserve a mention as to what makes them as such. Some highlights include; Guy Fieri, George W. Bush and Wee-Man just to name an extremely small, ahem, few.
I got my box a little later than expected, but was treated with an after work rip. Gotta say, I went pretty crazy on this item last year and wanted to be a little more prepared on what to expect for 2011 and I wasn’t disappointed, yet.
In each box you receive 24 packs with 8 cards in each, but also a box topper that may vary in size in shape. I happed to pull a cabinet card featuring Ichiro and also had a state relic box topper. These are pretty unbelievable! All of the states with the exception of New England are cut thick featuring a relic pertaining to its history. I pulled Wyoming, so it had an antique piece of wood for Yellowstone National park.
Now I understand to most sports cards collectors this may bring a WTF moment, but you have to understand the uniqueness of this product masks the dullness of the feeling of ripping cards all year and seeing the same ol’ players over and over again. Yes autograph and relic cards are nice, but to see something like this is fantastic. The original odds for these state cards were 1 per case, but it is turning out to yield far less stellar results.
It turns out that Blowout Cards has now offered a bounty to anyone that can bring all of the pieces to the NSCC they will pay them $5000. Now we’ll see how that’ll work, but i’m sure that even in the amount of time from now until Aug. 4th the price won’t go down that much.
Back again this year is the Ginter code which collectors can put together the puzzle and win various prizes. The same person solved the puzzle in 2009, 10 and it’s been rumored that this year has already been solved. Again, something different to bring to the table.
The craze has only begun, but may actually be haulted by the fact that Bowman Platinum is slated to be released in a week. Granted, these are different products to different people, but with each set that is released steam tends to slow down just a tad.
So overall, if you don’t want to mess with a set that’s not purely baseball maybe this isn’t right for you. One must enjoy various aspects of sports, pop culture for this to be interesting. It’s a good-looking set that offers a lot of fun inserts and a tricky auto/relic checklist, but a definite break from the typical.
Contact me if you’re interested in some 2011 Allen & Ginter!