Thursday, May 31, 2012

I Do Not Run Marathons

Have you ever run a marathon?  Why not?  Twenty-six point two miles over varying terrain for a couple of hours can't be that hard?  The Boston and New York Marathons attract thousands of runners, so it must be easy, right?  I have my reasons for not running (I'm out of shape and with a set of knees that have been completely destroyed by years of soccer.  Besides, if was ever stupid enough to try, I'd keel over in exhaustion about five miles in.), but what's your excuse?

If you're like most people, you don't run marathons because you know you'll never, ever, be able to finish it -- at least not in a reasonable time.  What's the point in starting something you know you'll never complete?

This brings me to 2012 Topps Archives Baseball.  By all outward appearances, this should be an awesome product, and the kind of set I'd be buying by the pallet-load -- if I had the money, that is.  Under ordinary circumstances, this could be a legitimate "Product of the Decade" contender (and that's a "shoot.")

It could be, but it's not.  And you can all put the blame on one card.  This one...  

It's not that Topps included a Harper RC -- personally, I think it's great that Topps was able to add him at the last minute.  No, it's the way they went about it: a super short-printed base card.

Topps could have easily printed enough Harper's to make it both attainable and realistic to complete a full 241-card set.  They made Yu Darvish and Yoenis Cespedes regular ol' base cards, and that hasn't hurt their "value" (whatever that means), why didn't they do the same with Harper?  Heck, they could have printed enough to equal the production of the other 40 All-Time Fan Favorties SPs (cards #201-#240).  

But Topps chose NOT to.  They could have made it a one-per-sixth box hit, but instead they made it a one-per-sixth case hit.  In other words, they gimmicked the shit out of it.

(Keep in mind, we're not talking about an Autographed Bowman Chrome Prospect Lavender/Fuschia Die-Cut Nuke-Fractor serial-numbered to 99; the Harper in question is a base card in a base-level product.)

This is what the current regime at Topps fails to understand about collectors.  We don't want to run marathons, we just want to collect baseball cards.  Topps didn't need to make 2012 Topps Archives Baseball a marathon, but they chose to anyway.  

We bother collecting a set you'll never be able to complete?


Rosenort said...

I have the same problem with the Gypsy Queen Yu Darvish, very annoying.

gcrl said...

i ran a marathon earlier this year. i don't plan to do another one. i also am not collecting archives, although i had fully planned to prior to its release.

night owl said...

Nice analogy.

I have more problems with Archives than just the SSP Harper.

P-town Tom said...

I've run a 1/2 marathon, but never intend to run a full.

I'm collecting Archives, but never intend to find a Harper.

I hear what you're saying though. I enjoy the challenge of the regular SPs (201-240), but a SSP is just plain cruel.

Anonymous said...

I don't agree (or at least not strongly) with alot of the previous criticisms you've had - but I'm 100% in agreement on this one.

The Pujols / Reyes uniforms in Topps s1 don't bother me - there will be card #331-332 in series 2. Same thing with the pie-in-the-face or other variations - those aren't part of the base set to me.

But there isn't another card #241. You can still just collect cards #1-240, but you'll know there's a #241 out there.