Thursday, June 4, 2015

Friday Five: Top 5 Sets from 1999

1999 was a really great year for baseball cards.  I remember buying a box of Topps cards right after Thanksgiving that year and being happy and entertained with cards the entire year.  I feel like I could right a book about the card sets from 1999, but instead I have narrowed the list down to just five sets. My five favorites:




5. Skybox Molten Metal- This reminds of this project I started awhile back...I got sidetracked.  That is going to be one of my summer projects.  Back to the set.  I split my first box of these cards with a kid I mentored during the summer while I was waiting to start teaching.  I loved the look and feel of the cards and the inserts were incredible.  There were the Pointillism insert set.....


and of course my favorite cards in the set were the metal parallel cards......


I know the late 90s and early 2000s were filled with tons of 100-200 card, premium such and such, base sets with some cool gimmicky insert sets that were cool for a month or two and are now forgettable.  Molten Metal was a little bit different/cooler than the others.  Other card companies had made insert cards with the pointilism pictures and metal cards, but something about this product clicked with me as a collector.  Cool set and boxes can still be found pretty cheap.  



4. Crown Royale- Pacific was a really important card company for me around this time.  They thought outside the box and had some truly unique looking card products.  I think I did more of their products in 2000, but for me the Crown Royale set was a huge starting point for me in collecting their cards.  Before Crown Royal I tended to think of Pacific as "that other" card company, not Topps or Upper Deck, Pinnacle, or Fleer.  The die cut cards featured the Pacific brand logo crown with a player photo over the top.  The set also featured all of the usual Pacific set trappings with colored parallels and cool looking inserts.  I don't see many boxes of this product anymore, nor do I see many sets.  There are a bunch of the singles up on Ebay and COMC.  There were also a few other cool Pacific products sets from 1999 that are probably a fun project too.   I ended up also putting together an Aurora and Paramount set that summer.



3. SP Signature- This was Upper Deck's answer to the Donruss and Leaf Signature mega-autograph sets.  Packs of this product cost $20 and contained a few base cards and an autograph.  I don't remember pulling anyone too cool out of this product, but I have picked up a whole bunch of these cards over the years, especially the Cardinals.  SP Signature cards are all on card autographs, the set features tons of Hall of Famers, and they are pretty readily available.  Some of the cards can be pretty pricey obviously if you are trying to track down a copy of the Maddux or other short printed star.  Still there are plenty of good players with inexpensive, on-card signatures in this product.  



2.  Sports Illustrated Greats of the Game- Another per pack autograph product that roughly had the same cost as the SP Signature product.  This also had on-card autographs (no stickers in 1999) and featured older players including a bunch of Hall of Famers.  The boxes run hot and cold, but I have already told that story on here before.  Like the SP Signature set there are loads of singles floating around of some pretty good players that can be had for less than an arm and a leg.  This set is definitely worth a little bit of your time and money.  Most year's this set could have easily been the best set of the year, but in 1999 there was this gem......




1999 Century Legends- I like the base set, but this set is here strictly for the autographs.  Unlike SP Signature and Greats of the Game, this was not a per pack autograph set, but this is one of the best autograph sets of all-time.  Black and white backgrounds, color player picture on the side, and clean crisp on card signatures of some of the greatest baseball players of all-time on cardboard.  I own a slew of these and would not trade them.  In fact, I have upgraded several of the cards I owned searching for better copies or nicer signatures.  If you love baseball cards owning at least one autograph from this set should be a must for your collection.  If you are looking for someone inexpensive for the sake of owning one there is Bobby Thomson or Bucky Dent.  from there the price of the cards goes up.  Anyone own a Barry Bonds?   









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