Pack Animal: 2018 Topps Opening Day

Opening Day is an odd set… The base set is largely uninteresting for me, except for the cards with different photos than are found in Series 1 & 2. The inserts, however, are usually fun. Inserts are largely why I bought two 24-card hanger packs last night.

I recognize most of these guys on the wrapper, but who’s that Yankee?  I don’t remember seeing him before.

Gosh, did I miss something by spending the past 18 months in a medieval castle in Liechtenstein?

OK, joking aside… I would normally feature the first card, but it’s Topps Opening Day,  You’ve essentially seen these cards before…

…But there is one base card I feel like I should feature before we’re completely sick of pulling cards of this particular someone…

I’d have to think that the Series 2 Ohtani card would have a different photo… something less press-conference-y.

I’m generally risk-averse in most things, but I see these crazy dollar amounts being thrown at Ohtani cards and all I can think is “…And if he blows out his arm?  Or even just turns out to be the second coming of Daisuke Matsuzaka?”  Not that Daisuke had a bad career, but nobody’s spending hundreds of dollars on his cards.

OK, enough of my retirement planning advice.  Let’s get on to the inserts.

We’re starting off with a “Team Traditions & Celebrations” insert.  Thoughts of “Take Me Out To The Ballgame” at Wrigley makes me think of Harry Carey or one of his celebrity stand-ins.  What do we get?  A crowd shot taken between “ONE!” and “THREE!”… or perhaps a picture taken at a Wrigley Field peace rally.

“Opening Day Stars” used to be a 3-D insert… A year or two ago it was converted to a set of stickers recently, which is nowhere near as much fun for this kid who happens to be an AARP member.

“Before Opening Day” is just an Opening Day-ish way of saying “Spring Training”.

The back of the card, of course, talks about the regular season… but he’s wearing a pullover, so it’s clearly Spring Training! I’d have to see more of these inserts before I pass judgement, but I’m leaning towards “pointless” (or maybe “Before having a point”).

Mascots are always a favorite insert of OD, and I pulled one of Cubs’ mascot Clark!

Another Cubs-related insert… Good thing I’ve got a Cubs fan trading partner on speed dial.

…Boy, that phrase – “on speed dial” – has lost all meaning, hasn’t it?

Moving on to the second pack’s inserts…

I’m by no means a fan of the Nationals, but I’ve warmed up to the Racing Presidents… especially now that they don’t single out one particular “President” as a constant loser.

Christian Vazquez AGAIN?  This one is the Opening Day parallel, which is nice enough, but I’ve sworn off parallels for Lent (and the foreseeable future).  FYI, the date which appears above the player’s name is in silver foil, but  appears black in the scan.

Good thing I’ve got a Red Sox fan trading partner on speed dial!

Mr. Red seems like a Mr. Met knockoff, but I’ll admit I don’t know Mr. Red’s history… maybe Mr. Met is a Mr. Red knockoff.

I’d still go with Mr. Met…  or Mrs. Met for that matter.

Speaking of the Mets, I pulled this Mets insert – finally, one I don’t need a trading partner for – and it’s from the “Opening Day” insert set.

So just to be clear about this: “Opening Day” has an insert set called “Opening Day” and Series 1 has an insert set called “Opening Day”, but the Opening Day Opening Day insert is different from the Series 1 Opening Day insert.

That’s about all I have regarding Opening Day. I was also planning on sharing a few thoughts about this week’s “Living Set” unveiling, but “a few thoughts” became “many thoughts” and I decided it was worthy of its own post… so that’ll be coming on Monday.

8 thoughts on “Pack Animal: 2018 Topps Opening Day

  1. Very rambling post. I like it. Mr. Red does pre-date Mr. Met. There’s also a Mrs Red. Lind of like Mickey and Minnie Mouse. Not sure when she debuted. When I saw that “Take Me out to the Ballgame” card I had a similar reaction. Not that the whole country would appreciate it, but Topps could make a whole insert set of Cubs guest singers ala the first pitch concept. The Cubs mascot, Clark doesn’t usually appear at the ballpark (and that’s fine with me.) I have that Monty Python LP. “And Rene Descartes was a drunken fart. I drink therefore I am.”

  2. A true “Take Me Out to the Ballgame” insert would come with an audio attachment that records everyone messing up the words and singing hopelessly off-key. (Still a great card, though!)

  3. Pingback: 2018 Opening Day Base Cards With Different Photos, Part 1 | The Shlabotnik Report

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