Friday, July 12, 2013

Complete Set: 2013 Topps Pro Debut

I am behind on my sets, so I will catch up a little bit today.  I also finished Topps 2 the other day, but that's even older news than this set.  Besides the Pro Debut set is fast becoming one of my favorite annual releases that Topps puts out on the market.  The line started in 2010 and has come along way since it's original release, so here's my take on this really cool and affordable product.

2013 Topps Pro Debut Kyle Parker

Staying true to form the base set of 2013 Topps Pro Debut uses the same design as the the base Topps set, but modified to fit the minor league teams.  So, unlike the Bowman cards, the minor league prospects in the set are all shown in the minor league uniforms.  I will admit that some of the Minor League masots and logos are goofy and a bit ridiculous, but I am still happy to have them in my collection. 

The base set consists of 220 cards and features a wide variety of players.  There are plenty of top tier prospects included in the set, such as Oscar Taveras, Carlos Correa, and Xander Bogaerts, but Topps also did a great job of including some cool fan favorites and veteran minor leaguers.  Although there is no Mike Hessmann card featured in this years set, there are plenty of other cool cards to collect from Pro Debut outside of the base set.  

2013 Topps Pro Debut Mascots Muddy the Mudcat

One of the most popular popular features of this year's Pro Debut set is the inclusion of the Mascot cards.  I've already showcased my Wool E. Bull card earlier in the week, but also managed to add a copy of Muddy the Mudcat to my collection.  Muddy is the odd looking mascot for Carolina Mudcats, who play outside of Raleigh in Zebulon, North Carolina.  They are currently the Indians high A team, but have also been the Marlins and Reds AA team within the past five years.  The mascot cards are very similar to the Upper Deck College Mascot cards with a cloth/fabric middle.  Pretty neat looking cards..

2013 Topps Pro Debut Hat Logo Patch Travis D'Arnaud

The Hat Logo Patch cards are also back into the Pro Debut set this year.  I've already picked up my copy of the the Durham Bulls card featuring pitcher Alex Colome, but I am also working on picking up a few of the other International League teams.  The hat logos cards were in high demand last year and I had to wait a long time to finally pick up one copy of a Tim Beckham card, but this seat of great looking cards is a little bit more reasonable in price this time around.  

2013 Topps Pro Debut Enny Romero Jersey Card

This most disappointing aspect of the Pro Debut set is the relic and autographed cards.  While the whole concept of jersey/bat/relic cards went stale long ago, the Topps Debut line has really made some nice jersey cards especially the jumbo jersey and patch pieces in the 2010 release.  Topps has scaled down the relic cards every year since, which leads to this year.  The jersey pieces are small, tend to all be blue, and are limited to a few players.  They are really inexpensive finds on Ebay if you have a favorite player featured in the set.  

2013 Topps Pro Debut Bralin Jackson Autograph 

The autographs are slightly better than the relic cards, but still leave a lot to be desired.  There are some good names in the autograph line, namely Oscar Taveras.  However, given that most of the autographs can be found for less than $5 on Ebay, there might be some good gambles here.  I have been going through and cleaning up some of the Rays prospects.  Maybe someday they will reach Durham, or better.  

Overall, this is a great product filled with some really good base cards and plenty of other goodies given the price of the box is only around $60.  The previous Pro Debut sets have held their value well and the hat logo cards and jumbo relics from previous years have thrived to the point where they can be difficult to find.  For example, I have spent the past three months trying to find a copy of the Hak Ju Lee hat logo card from 2012, but have only found one copy, which is selling for $25, on Check Out My Cards.  Pricy for a AAA shortstop.  

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