2021 Heritage: A Reader’s Epiphany About The “In Action” Cards

You thought I was done with 2021 Heritage.

*I* thought I was done with 2021 Heritage.

However, a Friend O’ The Blog who comments as Brett Alan made an observation that was too good to leave alone.

Side note: If Brett had a blog or a social media account, I’d link to it, but he has far more sense than I do :-D

In a prior post about 2021 Topps Heritage – which I’ve already updated with the information that follows, if you’re worried about ‘spoilers’ – I was scratching my head over why cards from the In Action subset would have the team name in tiny print on the front of the card…

My best guess was that MLB requires the team name to be on the front of the card somewhere… but if that was the case, why is there nothing like it on the front of the “Boyhood Photos” subset?

I was out of ideas on why this must be, and wrote it off as with a resigned “who knows”… Or to use one of my favorite German phrases “Weiss der Teufel”… The Devil knows.

…Not that I know many German phrases, but that’s one of my favorites.

…And YES, fans of 1980s baseball, Tim Teufel’s last name is the German word for “Devil”… and pitcher Jim Gott’s last name is the German word for “God”.  I wonder how well Teufel batted against Gott.

Ummm …So where was I?

Oh, right, I still had no idea why the team name was added to the front of the In Action cards.

Here’s where Brett comes into the story; He got a light bulb over his head while sorting through some cards he got at a show.

It seems reasonable to assume that the licensing agreement states that the full team name must be on the card *somewhere*. That would explain the team name on the back of the base player cards.

The Boyhood Photos cards has the full team name in the header on the back, so that’s the deal with that subset.

But what’s on the back of the In Action cards?

Puzzle pieces…

Historical league leaders…

“So You’re A Baseball Expert”…

Many of these backs have absolutely nothing to do with the player who appears on the front.

So if you’re required to have the team name on the card somewhere and it doesn’t make sense to put “MINNESOTA TWINS” on a Ron Santo puzzle back, where *do* you put it?

Somewhere on the front.

As Brett put it in his original comment, now we can all sleep nights again!

5 thoughts on “2021 Heritage: A Reader’s Epiphany About The “In Action” Cards

  1. I noticed that the font on action cards are so small & light you can hardly read it. Today you usually get at least 1 action card per pack. When Topps did it in 72 it was about 1 action card about every 3 or 4 packs, but actions cards were in every series Topps did back then. Also the check list cards gave collectors something to look forward to in the next series. 72 was the final year they did multiple series until the mid 90’s, not counting update. The backs puzzle pieces are ok, then you got game play questions, bit of a mind teaser. As far as the trophy cards go, I think Topps only wanted back to where players were remembered by people who followed the game back in 60’s.

  2. The legal rules in the Topps-MLB agreement are insane.It’s like they were drawn up by the Meryl Streep character in the Devil Wears Prada.

  3. Wait, if “the Devil knows”, does that make me…ah, never mind, I don’t want to know! Happy to help shed some light, though.

    Tim Teufel actually hit his first career home run off Jim Gott! The rest of his career, though, he only had one more hit against him, ending up with a .222 career average against Gott.

    One more oddity from Heritage, just an uncorrected (I assume) error on a particular card. On the back of Andrew McCutchen’s In Action card is one of those “Baseball Expert” quizzes. In the scenario on the card, The Pirates have the bases loaded with two out, Josh Bell hits a home run. The Cardinals appeal that the runner on first missed second, and he’s called out. And then the Twins argue that two runs should score. How many teams does Topps think play in a game?

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