16 packs per box, 20 cards per pack (MSRP $5)
Base Set: 400 cards (no short-prints, no rookie redemptions)
1969 O-Pee-Chee: 50 cards (1:2)
Presidential Predictors: eights (or nine) cards (1:8)
Yankee Stadium Legacy: (1:4)
1997 UD Jersey: 25 cards*
1997 UD Patch: 25 cards*
1998 UD Jersey: 20 cards*
1998 UD Patch: 20 cards*
1999 UD Jersey: 20 cards*
1999 UD Patch: 20 cards*
2008 UD Jersey: 25 cards*
2008 UD Patch: 25 cards*
500 Home Run Bat: two cards*
Milestone Memorabilia: five cards*
Signature Sensations: 20 cards+
Inkredible: 20 cards+
Upper Deck Autographs: 20 cards+
Season Highlight Signatures: 20 cards+
All Rookie Team Signatures: 20 cards+
1969 OPC Autographs: 31 cards+
* Odds of finding a game jersey card: 1:8
+ Odds of finding an autograph: 1:16
Base Set: 268 of 400 (67.00%)
Chiptoppers: Yankee Stadium Legacy pamphlet.
6 1969 O-Pee-Chee: M. Cabrera, M. Holliday, M. Ordonez, Man-Ram, M. Teixeira, N. Lowry, P. Fielder, B. Phillips
2 Presidential Predictors: R. Giuliani, J. Edwards
1 OPC Buyback: 1988 Wally Joyner
4 Yankee Stadium Legacy: #3128 (W. Ford), #3153 (Y. Berra), #5193 (Mattingly), #5218 (K. Maas)
1 1997 Jersey: X. Nady
1 1998 Jersey: B. Hall
1 Inkredible: J. Sosa
When I ripped open my first pack of 2008 Upper Deck and looked at the cards, I had a strange sense of deja vu. Didn't I collect this set 13 years ago?
Yes '08UD is a dead-ringer for the 1995 UD set. However, whereas the bronze-colored foil on the '95s accentuates the design, the silver foil on this year's model makes it very difficult to make out the player and team name.
As for the set's structure, '08UD is 400 cards divided between 300 individual players (cards 1-300), fifty MLBPA-approved "Rookies" (301-350), thirty team checklists (351-380), and twenty season highlights (381-400).
Again, like I've said the last couple of years, for the life of me, I still can't figure out why Upper Deck insists on including team checklist cards in the first series of a multiple series set. But what I still can't figure out, is which cards are the team checklists? Can you figure out which B.J. Upton card is the regular player card and which is the Tampa Bay
One thing in the base set that (thankfully) was dropped from last year are the rookie redemptions. Although originally on the sell sheets, Upper Deck wisely decided against a repeat of last year's rookie card debacle. What does this mean for you the collector? There might actually be more than two true rookie cards in the second series.
Inserts include a 50-card Hobby-exclusive set done in the style of the 1969 O-Pee-Chee set -- which suspiciously looks a lot like the 1969 Topps set. (I don't happen to have a '69 Topps common, but I did pull a 2008 Topps insert of Jacoby Ellsbury made to look like a '69T.) See for yourself.
Unfortunately (just like the base set) the silver text camouflages itself into the lettering of the player's jersey, making the player's name virtually unreadable.
The Bottom Line:
This box yielded two-thirds of the base set with a healthy stack of doubles -- all of which came from the subsets. In fact, in one particular pack I found the same Clay Buchholz Season Highlight on back-to-back cards. Ideally one box should be enough, but you may have to buy a second (or a couple of Blaster boxes).
The inserts ran as scheduled: six '69OPCs, two Presidential Predictors, and four Yankee Stadium Legacy mirrors -- all of which will gladly be donated to The Bench's V Foundation charity drive.
Each box also promises three autogamers, and this box delivered. I pulled an autograph of Mets pitcher Jorge Sosa, a Xavier Nady jersey done in the style of the 1997 gamers, and a Bill Hall gamer which Upper Deck says is based on the non-existent 1998 Upper Deck game jersey set -- but is actually from 1999.
Xavier Nady, Bill Hall, and Jorge Sosa? Not exactly anything to get excited about, but it's hard to think of Upper Deck's flagship product without autogamers.
Product Rating: 4 Gumsticks (Out of five)
... and another thing.
In the very last pack of this box, I pulled a buyback card.
"Congratulations! You have received a trading card that was originally released in a previous product and is now being re-released for your collecting pleasure."
I then took the card out of it's slickie-sleeve and immediately noticed the French text. It was a 1988 O-Pee-Chee Wally Joyner -- diamond cut and severely off-center no less!
It should be noted that, unlike the off-center 1980 Topps Eddie Murray I found in a pack of Topps Traded a few years back, there is nothing on this '88OPC Joyner (i.e. a stamping or an embossing) to signify that this card was re-purchased.