Hobby Box Break #19 – 2017 Topps Series 1

I’ve already changed my mind.

In an earlier post I stated I wasn’t going to buy boxes of the main release this year and was just going to enter some box breaks online for the Cubs and Twins and then purchase the complete set at the end of the year.

eBay prices have forced me to change course. The Cubs have been selling for obscene prices – $77, 83, 68, 65, 87, 74?!?! for a 3 box Jumbo break! Sure, they have more cards since they won the WS but in 3 Jumbo boxes you’re going to get about three base team sets, a few inserts, possibly a variant, and the really lucky ones will pull a relic. Most of them will not get an auto.

So, I took my $65 to the LCS and bought my own Hobby Box.


Kris Bryant gets the box again to start his 3rd season. Is a 40 HR year coming?


My first card showcases a modern angular perspective design for the cards. I like it, just not as much as the 2015 cards. The backs have  a nice bold color scheme as well as some players’ twitter and instagram account tags so fans can follow them on such. (Hopefully being cordial and respectful, never harassing!)


The Golds are pretty lackluster this time around with a small patch as shown.


Same goes for the blacks. This is a 66/66, though, which is kind of neat!


The foils standout to me once again with the full picture bleed. My pic doesn’t really show how cool they are. If you have any Twins or Cubs of these please send them my way!



Sigh. These are reprints of classic cards with advertisements on the back. I’m not sure if these counted towards my cards per pack but I’d of preferred them to be simply ads and not to have them disguised as cards.


1:36 pull. I don’t watch the MLB Network but I can see how this would be kinda cool for those who do. Maybe Topps recognized this and that’s why they made them scarcer then the ad cards!


I have a strong feeling that the First Pitch inserts are going to be included in every main release set for eternity. I love them. There does seem to be a Wrigley Field bias.


I love the 5 Tool set as well. Great design, nice player selection, interesting write-ups. I’m only going to collect certain players since the checklist on this is 50 cards so the Kemp, Kindler, and Moncada are available for trade.


My first year of collecting cards was 1987. This is going to be an ambitious undertaking but I’m going to try to complete this 100 card set. Please send me any you can spare!


I have no interest in Bowman cards but I’m going to keep these except the Machado.


This seems to be overkill. There already is an insert set with a huge checklist and then they include this Topps Salute set as well with another 100 cards. I feel like they should have just concentrated on the holidays for this one and left out the Legends and Rookies. These are available for trade except the Sano.


Another sigh. I’ve never been a fan of relics but I have become used to their appearance. What bothers me with this one isn’t the design. I think that looks great. In my mind I was pretty sure Ryu was injured last year. I checked Baseball Reference. Yep. One game. ONE GAME! He went 4.2 innings and allowed 6 runs! If he’s healed and ready to pitch this year – Great! Save these for Series 2. Over 900 players played in 2016 and Topps includes a relic of the guy who played in one of them. Sigh.


And, yeah. Buybacks are now called Rediscover Topps. I did get a 1974 card in a Jumbo but this is what I pulled from the hobby box. My 3rd sigh.

Final Tally

311 of 350 base

47 inserts

0 doubles

I don’t think I’m going to buy anymore so it’ll be interesting to see if I can trade for the set, especially the 87 inserts. If you can help, let me know! I did buy two judo packs so I do have some base doubles and a few more inserts.

Thanks for reading!


Hobby Box Break – 2016 A & G part 4 – Gint-A-Cuffs VIII

75% of the box done and I have 87.3 points in this years Gint-A-Cuffs. Let’s see how the box wraps up.

Pack 19.


The Casilla mini is a SP for +3 and the Bench Insert gives another +2 which is quickly cancelled out by the two Yankees.

90.3 Points

Pack 20.


+3 for the black Andrus mini and another +2 for the Sale insert, and Kluber is on the favorite player list +2 but those Yankees keep popping up for another -1.

Point total 96.3 – 96.3 FM is the radio station of the MN Twins!

Pack 21.


No Yankees! Hurray. Votto gives +2 for being a favorite player.

98.3 points.

Pack 22.


Subways & Streetcars is a mini set I shan’t be collecting but it gives me +2. I will be piecing together the Natural Wonders, though. +2. Mr. Ichiro 3000 bumps me up another +2

104.3. I’ve broken a hundred!

Pack 23.


My final hit is another plain Relic +5, but there’s a mini Yankee -1.

108.3 points.

Pack 24.


Finishing up the box we have a measly +2 for the Stargell insert.

So, depending on any new amendments to the rules it looks like my Gint-A-Cuffs VIII points total sits at 110.3


Hobby Box Break – 2016 A & G part 3 – Gint-A-Cuffs VIII

Half-way thru my box and my Point Total stands at 43.

Here you can read Part 1 and Part 2 . Gint-A-Cuffs competition can be found here.

However, the Commissioner of Gint-A-Cuffs ruled that the Numbers Game inserts will be worth 2 points each. I pulled 6 in my first 12 packs so my point total now sits at 55.

Pack 13.


Luke Jackson gives me +2 as a Favorite Player and the Baseball Legends also adds 2. Zoinks! It’s a Yankee though -1. Up to 58 points

Pack 14.


Ferocious Feline +2, Numbers Game +2, Yankee -1.

61 Points.

Pack 15.


Natural Wonders +2, Schirripa +1.

64 points.

These posts may be getting pretty boring. My apologies. I’m trying to hurry up and finish it before the MIA/ COL game starts since I want to watch Ichiro get his #3000.

Pack 16.


SANO! +1 for being a Twin. Tanaka -1 for being a Yankee. Numbers Game +2, Baseball Legends +2, and an A&G backed mini +2 that is also a SP +3.

73 points.

Pack 17.


My 2nd relic is on the Favorite Player list! Votto gives me a nice 8.5 points.

81.5 pts

I also noticed in the rules post that I get an additional 2.8 for my Rizzo box loader. I’ll add that now.

84.3 points

Pack 18.


Eaton is on the Favorite Players Lists +2, Bird is a Yankee -1, Numbers Game +2.

87.3 is where I stand with six more packs to go.


Hobby Box Break – 2016 A & G part 2 – Gint-A-Cuffs VIII

Here are the next six packs of my hobby box break for the Gint-A-Cuffs competition.

7th pack.


After the first quarter of the box my points stand at 19. Cowherd gives my a negative but Drury (Favorite Player List), Natural Wonders, and an A&G back mini each bump me up +2. Point Total = 24

8th Pack.



9th Pack.


The Mayor mini and Natural Wonder give me a total of +4 = 28 PTS.

10th Pack.


Laureates of Peace mini is a nice pull (1:38) and is worth +2 but gets cut in half since I pulled my first Yankee! 29 points total.

11th pack.


My first relic hit is worth +5 and the SP mini gives me +3. Points = 37.

12th Pack.


My favorite player makes an appearance! Kershaw gives me +4 but there’s another Yankee to deduct 1. The Price is a black-bordered mini though so that gives me another +3.

Half-way thru my box and my Point Total stands at 43.

At this time only one person has posted their total on the Leader Board. That total is 81 so I’m on pace to surpass that. However, there are a total of 17 participants so chances are someone will get a nice hit to pop them over 100.

Thanks for reading!

Hobby Box Break – A & G 2016 -Gint-A-Cuffs VIII

2 x 3 Heroes recommended I join a fun little competition called Gint-A-Cuffs. This is the VIII installment and I believe the winner and the last place loser each will take home a shiny box of 2016 Allen & Ginter. Sign-up ended a few days ago and now I need to post the break of my 2016 A & G box, tabulate my score, and see how I fare in the battle. FIGHT!


This is the first current year of Allen & Ginter for me. I think about 2-3 months ago the sets peaked my interest and I’ve decided to collect starting at 2011.  Any help would be greatly appreciated!


A player I collect! Awesome! This box loader puts me at 4 pts. I’ll have to check with the commissioner to see if I get a bonus since he’s on the Favorite Player List.


My first card pulled. Simply design, thick card stock, and a newness for me give this set high marks in my book. Other’s have been collecting A & G for ten years and are not too impressed with this year’s design. I like it, though.


Here are the base cards from my 1st pack. According to the rules pulling Rick Klein give me a negative point so I’m now at 3.


Ist insert. This is a cool little set that lists players from the same team and other greats who wore the same number. No points for Gint-A-Cuffs, though.


Each pack contains a mini parallel but this also provides no point adjustment.


2nd pack base. No points.


Here’s a SP. Also, worth 0 points.


A mini US Mayors card gives me +2, though! I’m up to 5.


Pack #3. Nothing to see here.


Another SP. Moving on.


+2 for the Natural Wonders insert. 7 points for me.


The Reddick mini does me no good or evil.


Pack the fourth. Hamels (which auto corrected to “camels”) is a favorite player. +2 points rocking’ me to 9 pts.


Another SP.


+2 for a Baseball Legends insert. I love these types of sets. This Ginter box goes to 11.


And a Black-Bordered mini. +3 = 14 points.


Pack Five. Schwarber is a Favorite Player. +2 = 16 points. I’m wishing I would have picked Cubs as my favorite team. I think I’ve pulled 5 or 6 already and each would have been worth an additional point!


Another Number’s Game.


And a Pope mini.


6th pack. A Twin! Since I picked MN as my favorite team I get +1 for Perkins. 17 points.




A & G back on this mini gives me a nice +2. And I’m going to stop there on this post. After 25% of the box I’m standing at a respectable 19 points.

This is fun!

Hobby Box Break #17 – 2016 Gypsy Queen

I’ve been buying the 3 packs + 3 blue frame cards hangers at Target since the set came where I pulled this beauty –


It’s numbered 11/25 and should sell for somewhere between $30-100. Here’s the auction link – Schwarber auto.

With that pull I justified the purchase of a hobby box. Here’s my break!


I really like the box and pack design.


My first card. When I first saw the design a few months back I wasn’t too impressed but now I’m really digging the color and simplistic design. It reminds me of Greek or Roman Marble architecture


Six short prints all of retired players. I think Kenta Maeda was the only current player listed as a SP. I’m going to hang onto the Satchel Paige but the rest are available for trade. I also have 346 Alomar and 350 Seaver for trade.


I have a streak of pulling THOR SPs! In my 2016 Heritage box I pulled his regular SP and here I nabbed his action variant. I’m going to hang onto this as well.


I didn’t collect these in 2015 but I like the design enough to hold onto these this year. I do have a double of the Votto for trade, though.


Who wants to see some dingers?

I love this insert set! I think there are 30 total cards to collect (no Bonds, though!) so I’ll need some help! Let me know if you can help me out!


And since there are only ten to collect for this set I might as well go for it. I do have an extra Donaldson for trade if you need him.


I picked the Kluber box! Any fans out there? These could be part of a nice trade package for you!


My other two hits weren’t too exciting for me. I’ll gladly ship these out to you, too!


I’m collecting the blue Retail frames and will have my wantlist needs updated shortly. This purple will likely find it’s way to A Cracked Bat.


I don’t usually collect minis but these are awesome! I’ll need some help with these, too!


These are available for trade.


As is this!


These are from the mini box and are all photo variants. I’m going to keep the Ichiro but the others are for trade.


185 of 300 base

34 minis

26 inserts

Zero doubles!

My wantlist can be found here – 2016 Gypsy Queen!

Thanks for reading and God bless!

Hobby Box Break #16 – 2016 Topps Heritage

Here we go! Heritage is my favorite set of the year and I picked up my box last night. Here’s what I pulled.


Trout is on the box. That’s three years in a row that he’s been featured on the box. Congrats on the hat trick!


My box topper was a ad panel. I’m not really a fan of these since they feature cards in the set. I’d prefer a buyback or one of the rarer pulls.


Who wants it?


These three packs are traveling to the three lucky fellas my kids and I pulled from a Crown Royale sack. Congrats and thanks for reading-  John H, Chris R, and Jeff W!


My first card was this Reds team card. Frazier is currently a White Soxian(?), though.


Short Prints! My budget keeps me from collecting these each year. I really like the Cano pic, though!  I think I have a few readers who collect the Master set so I’ll probably be dividing these out. Let me know if you’d like 1-2 of them!


THOR gets a close-up! Sorry about the glare on these pics. I didn’t notice how bad it was until I started writing. I’m going to hang on to Noah since there are a few SP’s I’d like and he’s one. I think I should have received 8 total in my box so chances are one of the 3 packs I sent out has a shortie.


New Age Performers have never interested me. These are ready for a new home.IMG_0665

I do collect the THEN & NOW, now (presently (at this moment in time)). I also collect Kershaw so I’m happy with this pull!


I also enjoy the history lesson on each FLASHBACKS insert. I’ll need plenty of these to complete the sets!


My favorite animal is a Tiger. This is actually a pretty simple but pleasing design. I don’t collect Relics, though, so this one is set aside for Julie at A Cracked Bat.

I just noticed that I didn’t pull any Chrome. Did they finally do away with it? I’m not really a fan so that’s nice if they did.

Final Tally-

170 – base (425)

11 – inserts

1- relic

1- ad panel

7 – SP

NO doubles!

I think I’m going to buy the base set off eBay since I didn’t really pull money card from this box that I could turn into another box.

Let me know if you can help me with some of the inserts, though!

2016 Topps Heritage Wantlist

Also, let me know if you need some of my base!

Thanks for reading!


Hobby Box Break #15 – 2015 Gypsy Queen

A few weeks back I was on a focus group for the new exhibit  Martin Luther and the Art of the Reformation at the Minneapolis Institute of Art. I believe it will be showing at the MIA from October 2016-January 2017 and then onto Chicago, New York, and Wittenberg. If you have a chance to check it out at one of those places, do! It looks really cool and they are doing a correlation of the invention of the Printing Press’s role in spreading the Bible and Martin Luther’s ideas with the current era’s inventions of the internet and social media.

For two hours of my time and opinions the MIA bequeathed upon me a shiny $50 Visa gift card. I traded that gift card and ten bucks for another 2016 Topps Series 1 Hobby box from my local card shop, Three Stars Sportcards. I was able to complete my base set from the box and also received three pretty good hits.

A Harper Camo SP

Willie Mays Coin & Stamp #/50

Another Clear Acetate – Papi & the Prince (Yep. I bought two boxes and pulled a clear acetate from each! That’s 2 out of 3600 cards in the world!)

Since my budget is pretty limited I sold those cards (those are my actual listings!) and returned to Three Stars Sportcards to splurge on a box of Gypsy Queen! Here’s what I pulled!


Four “hits” per box for $95 is pretty good but I probably would have never bought it if I didn’t have the money from my eBay sales. You get 25 packs with a total of 250 cards. $0.38/ card is a little pricey for me since I’m mainly a set collector.


Here’s my first card. I had been buying some discounted Target blaster boxes and really fell in love with the design and the card stock.


I think every pack came with a mini card. These are my variants. At this moment I’m not collecting the minis so let me know if you’d like to trade for any of these! I also have a mini 328 Eckersley ,334 L. Hernandez, and 264 Rios 56/99 (bronze/gold?). Let me know what you need for the base minis and I’ll see what I have!


I really like the hand drawn picture on this Basics of Base Ball mini. I think I’ll hold on to this one.


These are my regular size SPs. All of these are for trade since I’m not willing to spend the money to collect them. I also have  312 Palmer, another 318 Morgan, 325 Sparky Anderson, 336 Rivera, and 341 Konerko.


My two autos! Do I have any readers from St. Louis? These could be yours!


A nice Jeter relic with a pinstripe and a REALLY nice looking mini Verlander. I like the frame on the mini but I”m pretty sure I have a few readers who collect Tigers. Both of these are for trade!


This is a bronze paper-framed variant #’d 354/499 for trade. I really like the look of the paper-frames and have a page or 2 of the white ones. I also have Greinke 088/499, Street 011/499, and d’artaud 198/499 in bronze for trade. If anyone has some white-frames they don’t want send them my way please!


Cool looking insert. I think I’ll hang onto this.


These are pretty cool, too, but I’m not going to collect them. For trade! I also have GS-3 Adam Eaton, GS-5 Mike Aviles, GS-6 Dustin Ackley, and GS-9 Alex Gordon.


I’m going to collect the Queen’s Throwbacks, though! I love the pic of Nelson Cruz. I do have another copy of Kipnis (QT-25) for trade.


Walk off winners are also available for trade. I also have GWO-4 Ortiz, GWO-7 Freese, GWO-14 Perez, and GWO-24 Walker.


Within my hobby box was a mini box containing these variants. All of them are available for trade.


In my 2nd Hobby box break I pulled a 1/1 Platinum Jose Abreu RC checklist. I may have beaten that with this box!


I do a lot of selling on eBay and knew that Trout cards are pretty much the most popular of the current crop of players. I have no idea what this card will go for but I started the bidding at $40. Here’s the link to the auction – MIKE TROUT auto.

So, with my $50 gift card and whatever this auto sells for I pretty much got a FREE box of 2015 Gypsy Queen for two hours of my time at the MIA! Tatanka!


187 of 300 base

34 minis

26 inserts

1 AUTO redemption.

Here’s my WANTLIST if you can help me complete the set!

Thanks for reading!

Hobby Box Break # 14 – 2016 Topps series 1


It’s the 65th anniversary of Topps Baseball cards and this is my hobby box.


Country Breakfast? Is that his nickname? I really enjoyed the design of the 2015 series. This year’s seems hit and miss. Last night I read Night Owl Cards’ review. A lot of what he said rings true for me. Looking at Mr. Butler above I’m really annoyed that you can’t see the full A’s logo. This could have been some 9 year old’s first pack of baseball cards and he only gets 3/4 of a logo!


Berger’s Best inserts reprint one card from each of the 65 base sets released. I pulled 9, as you can see. I like these but I am a little annoyed that they used the same player multiple times. The checklists says Mike Trout and Cal Ripken, Jr each have a few cards. It’d have been nice to have 65 different players.


First Pitch inserts are back. I’ll be collecting these as well as the Berger’s Best.


Pressed into service is a Position player called upon to pitch theme. I like it especially since it has Ichiro’s pitching performance from last year.


Perspectives is the final insert set I’ll be collecting from Series 1. I really like the photography and it helps that they left the Base design elements completely off.


100 years of Wrigley Field is a fine set but I have no interest in collecting it. I do enjoy watching Cubs games on TV though. I think they do the best job broadcasting in all of baseball.


WHAT!?! Is this a “Tron” cross promotion? How did this design get through the approval process? I guess we all have different tastes and these are not for me.


These are alright. My son is old enough for Garbage Pail kids and he might get a kick out of these someday, too.


The Golds. I’m not really into these, either.


Strangely, I do like the Rainbow foils. I might attempt to collect the set as such. If you have any Rainbow foils you don’t want, send them my way, please!


I pulled this Black. 52/65. I’ll check with Remember the Astrodome and see if he’d like it.


I pulled a clear acetate! I’ll be checking with Remember the Astrodome on this one, too.


Design of the relic isn’t bad but I’m still not much of a fan of the jersey swatches. This is up for trade, too.


Yep. You’re jealous. I pulled the 1987 buyback. Black stamp means common so there are probably a LOT more 87’s out there being pulled.

Final Tally

310 of 350 base

48 inserts

0 doubles

I’m sure I’ll eventually pick up another hobby box but my indifference to most of the set has pushed me towards looking  at some of the other sets from the past, such as Gypsy Queen and Allen & Ginter, to fulfill my addiction until 2016 Heritage comes out next month. I don’t think I’ll be pursuing 2016 Topps Series 1 as vigorously as I did 2015.

Thanks for reading and let me know if you’re willing to trade!

PS – I almost forgot! I do have a few 2016 BUNT codes that I won’t use. Let me know if you’d like them!

Hobby Box Break #13 – 2003 Topps Series 2

On to the second series!


I never noticed the circled “H” on hobby boxes until a seller from Ebay pointed it out to me a few weeks back.


You can sort of see some of the speckling from the stickiness of the cards. This box was much better than the last series’ but it was still a problem. I’m glad Topps changed the process in later years.

2003 s2 bb as

These are the Red Backs opposed to the series 1 Blue backs. Ichiro is a keeper for me but the others are available.

2003 s2 bb as01

Shiny. (Any Firefly fans reading this?) Only getting two in an entire hobby box does not motivate me to attempt to complete the insert set. I’ll probably be checking LIFETIME TOPPS PROJECT‘s wantlist and see if he needs them. Or I recently traded with CARDS MY MOTHER DIDN’T THROW OUT. He’s a Diamondbacks collector.

2003 s2 golds

More Golds! But no one I collect. It’s too bad because the design of this year’s set is so appealing to me! It’d would have been nice to pull a Pujols (HA! Say that outloud.) or an Ichiro.

2003 s2 hp

The backs of these cards show the Active Career Leaders in the category listed on the right side of the front. If not for the Juicers, Griffey would have probably topped each list. He’s listed as 5th on each.

2003 s2 rb

I really like this set. I think I will post my needs on wantlists.


337 of 354 base

18 inserts

5 doubles

Another box with no “hit”.

No worries. It’s just cardboard.

Here’s my wantlist for the set. Thanks for reading!