Unfortunately it is mathematically impossible to complete a set by ripping a single box of a product and often when it is possible, collation usually prevents it from happening. Ginter boxes are actually quite well collated with few dupes, but collectors attempting to put together a complete set are left with something of a challenge. I assembled my complete set, including the short prints, in just over a week through a few trades and by purchasing up a few lots of cards on Ebay.
Here's my quick take on the base set:
2013 Topps Allen & Ginter Evan Longoria
Allen & Ginter has become an annual release from Topps and I would venture to say that it is probably one of the more anticipated products every year. While I do not have the sales numbers to prove the products popularity, it is often hard to find boxes of this product on Internet Card Stores, such as Atlanta Sports Cards, after the first few days. There are still boxes floating around on Ebay, but they dry up within a few weeks too. The base cards of the Ginter set are always on a white background and feature some sort of border inspired by some of the original Ginter cards.
I always think of the base set in three parts: current baseball players, vintage baseball players, and pop culture cards. The Longoria pictured above is one of my favorite current players in this years set. I like the horizontal card design, most are vertical, on this card and like the picture of Longoria's follow through. I would say that sixty percent of the set is made up of current baseball players.
2013 Topps Allen & Ginter Willie Stargell
The other forty percent of the set is composed equally of the pop culture cards and vintage baseball players cards. The vintage players are pretty cool, but Topps can be a little bit repetitive with the older players they include in some of their sets. Why is there always a Wally Joyner (Wally Joyner 117 OPS+, Ray Lankford OPS+ 123. More Lankford)? I like looking at the pictures on the vintage cards and often like looking at the different unis on the vintage player's cards. This year I really like this Willie Stargell card with the yellow Pirates helmet and the black pinstriped polyester uniform. The are plenty of other good ones in this year's set.
2013 Topps Allen & Ginter Nik Wallenda
The final segment of the set is the pop culture segment. The original Allen & Ginter cards were actually filled with all sorts of cards like these. The pop culture segment can also include, besides people, places, events, and objects. I always thought of the original Ginter cards as being really informational. This year's set is mainly filled with people, but also has a fair number of places mixed into the set too. I am going to post a little more about the non-sport cards in the Ginter sets this weekend.