Monday, December 07, 2015

The Great Reorganization: Step 14: To Collect or Not (2014 Edition)

As any baseball card collector will tell you, it's way too easy to end up with too much cardboard in the house!  One of my goals moving forward is to completely reorganize my collection - and at the moment that means fully sorting a year's worth of cards at a time (and making tough decisions about which cards/sets to keep and which to add to my trade boxes).

For 2014, a few of the set choices (to collect or not) are easy so we'll begin with those.

Topps Finest, Topps Triple Play, Panini Golden Age, Topps Heritage Minor Leagues:

You are looking at my full collection of the above four sets.  Obviously, I own virtually none of any of the four sets and so it's an easy choice to say that I won't be trying to collect any of the four sets!

It is fun to have a card where the team name is "Blue Wahoos" though.

Donruss Elite Edition:

This set is sort of confusing as it is branded "2013" on the front and yet the back has a 2014 in the trademark area.  Whether you call this a 2013 or 2014 card is irrelevant to me...I'm not going to collect to the set so I won't have to worry about those technicalities!

While I continue to put off some of the tougher choices, let's take a look at some more easy calls in terms of sets I won't be collecting from 2014.

Bowman, Bowman Chrome, Bowman Platinum

The trio of Bowman sets are both confusing and boring - and so I won't be chasing any of the sets from 2014!

While I won't be trying to collect any of the above sets, it should be noted that I will be keeping some of the cards for my personal collection.  In fact, I have already begun gathering up cards for a pair of Frankensets (one all Reds, one all non-Reds) which I hope to start creating in 2016.  For now, I will be taking some of my favorite cards from various sets that I'm not collecting and add them to the pile for potential inclusion in one of my two Frankensets.  That project should be a lot of fun...but I need to first complete my collection reorganization before I tackle another big project!!

Topps Stickers:

I have never bought a package of Topps Stickers for myself - the only ones I ever end up with are from various trades...and as such, there's no way I'll ever complete the set so why even bother entertaining the idea?  This is another set that's easy to eliminate.

Panini Prizm:

The Panini Prizm set was actually one of the first tougher choices for the 2014 set.  I actually like this set quite a bit - and those camo parallels are pretty sweet as well!  Ultimately though, the lack of logos hurts this product too much for me to seriously consider it...and so it too bites the dust!

If you are following along at home, so far we've taken a look at ten different sets from 2014 and I have decided that I won't collect any of them!  Will there be any 2014 sets that actually make the cut?!

That answer, of course, is yes...and we will get there!  Before we get to the obvious keepers, let's take a look at some of the tougher choices that I had to make.

Topps Archives:

First, I must say that generally speaking I really enjoy the Archives brand.  I have collected the set in 2012, 2013, and 2015.  For some reason, however, I never bought any of the 2014 set...which means that I won't be bothering to collect this year's edition.  I will, however, be adding that Todd Frazier to my personal collection!

Gypsy Queen:

The Gypsy Queen line is another brand that I've collected quite a bit of over the last few years.  In fact, I have collected the 2011 Gypsy Queen set and the 2013 Gypsy Queen set.  But for the 2014 GQ set?  Nope, I'm sitting this one out.  Too many short prints in Gypsy Queen and to be honest, the design of the 2014 never appealed to me.  This was an easier cut that the Archives set despite the fact that I have more cards from 2014 GQ!

Topps Opening Day:

Ok, I liked.  Not all of these choices were difficult.  I pretty much never collected Opening Day (even when I was a very poor little kid) and that isn't going to change with 2014.  This one is an easy set to say "no thanks" to.

I had to scan that Todd Frazier parallel separately though because that is an awesome looking Opening Day card...and that one is another instant keeper!

That puts us 13 sets up, 13 sets down in terms of whether or not I'm going to collect them.  Looking over the remaining piles of cards that I still need to sort, I can assure you we will soon discover some sets that I will be collecting!

Topps Heritage

Hey, what's this?  That's right, our first keeper set of 2014!  I love the design of the 2014 Heritage set and so I went all-in with the set (short prints and all).  I haven't yet finished my 2014 Heritage set though - so if you have any for trade check out my want list to see if maybe we can work out a deal!
I'm not collecting any of the inserts from the 2014 set besides the 4 card 1st Draft set which I've completed.

Speaking of trades, if you happen to be working on your own 2014 Topps Heritage set, I have quite a few cards for trade (including short prints and inserts to go along with a decent sized stack of base cards).  You can find my full for trade page here.


I'm writing this post in real time as I sort cards...and I can assure you that this is plenty exhausting!  On the bright side, the more sorting I have to do now probably will mean the fewer sets that I'll end up deciding to keep...which means more trade bait for everyone else out there!

Speaking of trade bait...


The 2014 Donruss (Panini) set isn't actually all that bad.  However, it's not nearly good enough for me to consider collecting that set over the likes of Topps Heritage, Allen & Ginter (which we haven't yet gotten to), or a host of other sets.  I did end up with quite a few keepers out of my pile of 2014 Donruss cards though which bodes well for the set in future years!

Phew!  That was a lot of typing and scanning and I'm still not done.  After going through the Donruss cards that I had, I took a six hour break or so from this post.  Now, I'm back and ready to get to the last of the 2014 sets.  Which will I collect and which will I give up on?

To recap, so far I'm collecting 2014 Topps Heritage and giving up on every other set that I've looked at...surely my 2014 collection will include more than just Heritage, right?  Right?!

2014 Topps:

The flagship set is always a favorite when it comes out each January, mostly because January is the snowy, non-baseball season and any ray of hope of summer (or at least spring) is much appreciated.  I ended up with a huge stack of 2014 Topps, probably more of that set than any other flagship set in recent memory...and yet, here I am only a year later and I can honestly say that the 2014 flagship set doesn't hold up for me.

Nope, looking through the cards now I'm simply not interested.  I guess the set design is too close to the typical Bowman design (which isn't a good thing in my book)...and so, I guess my gigantic stack of 2014 Topps is off to my trade box - along with all of the inserts that I have from the set!

Topps Chrome:

While I may have decided against collecting the 2014 flagship set, how about its Chrome cousin?  I actually am still working on the 2013 Topps Chrome set which is reason enough for me to give up on the 2014 version.  That and the fact that I only own a handful of Reds from this set which would mean I'd have to track down the vast majority of the set via trade and/or by buying boxes of a set that I don't really care for.  Nah, I'll sit this one out too.

Stadium Club:

Finally, we reach another set from 2014 that I'm actually going to collect!  That's right, after bypassing the likes of everything Panini, Topps flagship, and even Topps Archives, I've decided that I'm a sucker for 2014 Topps Stadium Club and shall soon make the set all mine, mine, mine!  In fact, I've got a good chunk of the set already in hand - I'm only missing one measly base card from the full set (card #113 if you have one for trade)!

Allen & Ginter:

Phew, after all of those cards and sets we are finally down to the final set that I need to make a decision on for 2014:  Topps Allen & Ginter.  Of course, if you know anything about me you know that I'm going to go all-in on this much so in fact that I'm trying for pretty much every insert set (regular sized and mini) - you can find the full list of what I need right here.

And that ends my look at 2014.  In the end, I decided to go after Topps Heritage, Topps Stadium Club, and Topps Allen & Ginter from 2014.  I think those three sets each offer up something unique to my collection, and taking the three as a whole I'll get a nice cross-section of 2014's offerings.  There were definitely a few tough sets to rule out but I'm happy with my final choices!  And, even better, I'm happy to see some substantial progress in terms of reorganizing my overall collection!


Hackenbush said...

Good choices.

Jeff Jones said...

I'm with you on flagship '14, 13 was way better and next years looks amazing . Can't wait till January

P-town Tom said...

The Todd Frazier Opening Day card scanned really, really well. Nice card.

Nachos Grande said...

Thanks all, glad to see some agreement (though I suppose that means it'll be that much harder to unload all my unwanted cards)!

Red Cardboard said...

Ummmmm, the correct thing to do is to collect everything, obviously. Geez.

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