Monday, January 21, 2013

30 Year Top 50: 2001 Bowman Heritage

#5- First of the Top 5 sets, in my opinion, tonight starts with the 2001 Bowman Heritage set.  The Bowman Heritage line started in 2001 and ran until 2007 when it was discontinued.  If there is one set I miss putting together every year it's this one.  The set had a similar concept to Topps Heritage and I know that many collectors felt like two Heritage sets was too many, but they had entirely different aims.  The Topps Heritage set used a previous Topps card design and focused on established players.  The Bowman Heritage set used a previous Bowman card design and focused on prospects and draft picks.

2001 Bowman Heritage Derek Jeter

This set is winner all around and it starts out with the design.  The 2001 Bowman Heritage set borrowed its design from the 1948 Bowman set.  The black and white photography with the white border is a great look and these cards do a great job of imitating the original classic Bowman set.  Topps, which produced this set, did change the size of the cards to the standard card size from the undersized original set.  

2001 Bowman Heritage Albert Pujols

The 2001 Bowman Heritage set had a total of 440 cards with the high numbered cards being short printed, just like the 1948 Bowman set.  The high numbered cards included a few important rookies including my favorite of Cardinals great Albert Pujols.  I've always thought this Pujols rookie was classy looking and I've managed to stash away a couple of nice copies of the years.  As a Cardinals fan, I unloaded parts of my Pujols collection after he signed with the Angels, but held on to my Bowman Heritage cards.  If you do not own a Pujols rookie and are thinking of adding one, this would be my first choice hands down.  

2001 Bowman Heritage Ichiro Suzuki

Of course, if it's a 2001 baseball card set, it would not be complete without an Ichiro rookie too.  This, again, is my favorite rookie of Ichiro.  I believe he might have a few more to choose from than Pujols, but I love the black and white look.  Add in the fact that this card is also apart of the high printed short prints and you've got a great card worth owning.  

2001 Bowman Heritage Chase Utley 

2001 Topps Heritage Miguel Cabrera

Beyond the typical Pujols and Ichiro rookie cards which were common in the 2001 baseball card sets, the Bowman Heritage set also put out the first cards of Chase Utley and an early card of Miguel Cabrera.  The Cabrera card is not a true rookie card, but it's a popular find among his card collectors.  The Utley card features him wearing a Futures Game jersey, Topps did not airbrush this product, and is one of a few rookie cards he had in 2001.  

2001 Topps Heritage Barry Bonds Autograph

Beyond the base set the 2001 Bowman Heritage set has a great run of insert cards.  They include a set of 1948 reprints featuring some of the era greats.  You can also find the reprints with stadium seat relics.  Sorry, no scan of Ferris Fain.  My favorite insert in this set is the run of autographs.  First, since the cards are black and white they offer a great background to sign over.  There are many collectors who assembled the base set just simply to use the cards for autographs.  The actual certified autographs from the set are low in number.  Topps only placed three modern and four 1948 era players in the autograph line.  The cards all ran at over 1:1000 odds except the ARod autograph which ran slightly below 1000. The fourth vintage autograph, a Ralph Kiner, is not officially listed on the checklist.  However, I assure you that it exists, is very difficult to find, and quite pricey.  

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