Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Mini Me

I'd love to say I've never been a fan of mini cards.  Except I have.  I went nuts over the minis in 2002 Topps 206 and 2003's Topps 205.  I ripped pack after pack, building near complete sets of both.  The mini cards seemed like such a fresh fresh yet vintagey, fun, an unique set that I didn't get bothered by the countless parallel backs, impossible to calculate insertion rates, and lack of Pirates.  And then I realized out of all those packs (and a few full boxes), my grand haul was two, count 'em two, Pirate minis.

And for the better part of the next decade that about ended my experience with mini cards.  They never seem to appear at shows.  When they do, they're a pain to flip through due to their awkward size.  And on top of that...still almost no Pirates in the sets.

I've come across a few mini's here and there, but I'm still atrociously behind on even the most common of the parallels.

Luckily, I finally came across an entire row of minis, two across, at my most recent show pilgrimage.  Better yet, the cards were in the 5/$1 box

 Admittedly, I'm still trying to get the appeal of the mini card craze.  It was a fun novelty item for a year or two.  The cards had the original tobacco card size, and there were a number of reprint cards in the set that only enhance the appeal.  I'll never own a T-206 Honus Wagner.  But I'll probably come across a Topps 206 mini at some point.  And that's good enough for me.

But Gypsy Queen?  Ginter?  Year after year?  They just seem like one more card to get lost in the shuffle.  One more annoying stack to flip through.

Maybe the thing that annoys me the most is the absolute lack of creativity in the photos used.  Sure, the photoshop effects are drab and predictable.  And I'm certainly not fond of how much the photo alterations obscure the actual, original, image, particularly with this year's Gypsy Queen.  But the jerseys.  Ugh!

Is it really necessary to use horrible posed shots featuring players in their spring training jerseys?  I mean, all major leaguers and most of the AAA roster sit for photo sessions in their major league jerseys during spring training.  And for years Topps used posed pre-game photos.  Would it be that tough to use a photo of the player wearing a real jersey?  Spring training/batting practice jerseys are just kind of annoying, and I insist their use amounts to little more than yet another marketing ploy to sell even more jerseys, hats, and anything else that can be hocked to the public. 

Oh yeah, mini cards.  At the end of the day, it's nice to knock some tougher to find cards off the list that aren't of the serial numbered variety.  That doesn't happen much these days.  Still, I can't help but feel like I'm just going through the motions with cards like this - adding simply because I don't have them and there aren't really any other cards I really want that I'm budgeting for.

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