12 January 2015

Pack of the Day 82: 2014 Topps High Tek


A couple of posts ago I said something about not buying the recent Topps High Tek release as it is a pretty expensive product with only eight cards per box. RAZ from a month ago is a liar. Dave & Adam's Card World had it on sale along with a couple of other things I wanted, and I ordered a box of my own to see what I would get. The cards are printed on clear acetate and have various background patterns of varying rarity. There's a guide to the patterns on the Cardboard Connection site. AL players and NL players have their own different sets of patterns.


These three cards are from the most common background variations. Jose Abreu is a pretty good pull recently, although it seems like his card prices are down a bit now that we're in the winter lull. Prince Fielder isn't the greatest pull at the moment, but I like his cards well enough. Julio Teheran is the Braves' top pitcher, but I don't follow most of the NL all that closely and don't know much else about him.


Sandy Koufax and Edgar Martinez are from the 2nd tier of background patterns, referred to as Grid and Spirals on the Cardboard Connection guide. Koufax is a legendary Hall of Famer and Martinez is arguably a Hall of Famer, although he gets dinged by the voters for spending a large part of his career as a Designated Hitter.


This Julio Teheran card falls into the 3rd tier of patterns, which on NL cards is called Shatter. I said about all I had to say (not much) about Teheran up above. I didn't get any cards from the 4th, 5th, or 6th tiers of rarity in this box, so all that's left now is the hits. Each box promises a serially-numbered card and an autograph. Lets see what I got.


The numbered parallel for the box was this Clouds Diffractor of Omar Vizquel, numbered # 01 / 25. There are apparently a handful of Vizquel super collectors with deep pockets out there who fight over his really limited cards, making his 1 / 1 cards from this set some of the biggest hits in the product. Unfortunately, there are plenty of this particular version to go around, so it will not make me instantly wealthy. Maybe because this is the first card in the print run it would sell for a slight premium, but that is hit or miss at best. It's a pretty cool card, but it's not a guy I collect. Let's look at the autograph.


Oh, this guy looks familiar. Both of my hit cards feature Omar Vizquel. This is the base version of the autograph card, so again it is not rare enough to command a huge premium on the secondary market. If I went to the effort of selling the cards from this box I think I would probably get back half to two-thirds of what I paid for the box. I didn't pull any cards from any players or teams I focus on in my collection, so resale value is my only real benchmark for this box's success. There are definitely worse possible boxes out there, so this one probably falls just north of average because the parallel was a low-numbered card and Omar Vizquel's autograph sells fairly well compared to a lot of others in the set.

Would I buy another box? I don't think I would unless the prices came down quite a bit. It's a fun set and I like the acetate cards and on-card autographs, but opening one box is enough. Unless you PC some really high-end player you're probably better off buying singles from people who break this stuff. Even if you do collect a high-end player you might be better off just buying singles, because there's no guarantee you'll pull the card you want in a given case or group of cases.

5 comments:

  1. Glad they brought the product back, but I didn't like the price. If you're interested in trading the 1st Teheran (spiral?), let me know- I'd be interested in it.

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    1. I'll set the Teheran aside for you.

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    2. I found a Felix Hernandez you might be interested in- 2008 Bowman blue bordered, # 466/500?

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  2. I can't figure out why this set got brought back in this format - I thought the whole point was to try to get all the patterns of your favorite player. Six base cards per box really doesn't make that an attractive option.

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    1. No, this format really doesn't gel with the 'spirit' of the original set. I imagine Topps was more interested in squeezing a cheap buck out of nostalgic collectors than they were in putting out a product that really honored the way that people collected the originals. Why sell $70 boxes with 200 cards in them when you can get $70 for 6 cards?

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