The Ultimate Ginter Mini Set Bracket: Seeding Vote #8 (2014)

Before we get to today's next Seeding Vote, I need to congratulate Man's Best Friend (winner of the 2012 vote) and Peacemakers (winner by tie-breaker of the 2013 vote).  Now, on to the vote for 2014!

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Welcome to the eighth of my Ultimate Ginter Mini Set Bracket posts!

For the first part of the bracket creation, we need to seed the various mini insert sets.  I thought it'd be fun to first have a vote for the best mini set within each year and use each vote winner as a top seed.  From there, I'll fill in the rest of the bracket with some of the non-winning mini sets and then the entire bracket will be set and we can have our giant vote-off!

I also hope that each of these Seeding Vote posts give you a bit of information about each of the mini sets for a specific year.  That should help with your voting as we move forward into the heart of the Ultimate Ginter Mini Set Bracket.  I laid out the rest of the ground rules in my introductory post so feel free to check that post out as well.  Now, we move on to the good stuff (and remember to vote at the bottom of the post)!


The Ultimate Ginter Mini Set Bracket:  Seeding Vote #8 (2014)

The 2014 Allen & Ginter set stays consistent in regards to the total number of mini insert sets (eight) which is the same as the previous three years.  What's different this time around is that there are a total of 123 minis to collect...but six of those minis were only available if you bought special binder packages directly from Topps (Into the Unknown #ITU-16 Hernan Cortes, Larger Than Life #LTL-12 Pocahontas, Little Lions #LL-16 Turkish Van, Outlaws, Bandits & All-Around Ne'er Do Wells #OBA-11 Ned Kelly, Where Nature Ends #WNE-26 Jan Vermeer, and World's Deadliest Predators #WPD-22 Cone Snail).  I suppose one could simply ignore the six special cards since they are all numbered at the end of each respective set but I've decided to include them in the checklists below (in part because I did eventually acquire all of them myself, though I didn't actually buy the special binders).

With that out of the way, let's update our running tally of mini sets and the total number of mini cards in each year's edition of Allen & Ginter:
  • 2006:  0 sets, 0 total cards
  • 2007:  3 sets, 65 total cards
  • 2008:  6 sets, 107 total cards
  • 2009:  5 sets, 90 total cards
  • 2010:  9 sets, 181 total cards
  • 2011:  8 sets, 95 total cards
  • 2012:  8 sets, 116 total cards
  • 2013:  8 sets, 116 total cards
  • 2014:  8 sets, 123 total cards
Now, let's take a look at the mini sets for 2014!

Athletic Endeavors

The case hit for 2014 minis, Athletic Endeavors celebrate some of the goofier "sports" you might find, the sort of things that might be on ESPN the Ocho (or whatever they called that channel).  I only have one card from this set and, to be honest, I'm thinking about selling/trading it rather than spending fruitless hours (and dollars) attempting to acquire the other nine.  At least for the moment I have something to scan for the post!  As usual, I'll denote the cards I need with an asterisks(*) and bold font.

Checklist:
AE-01 Shovel Racing*
AE-02 Wife Carrying Championship*
AE-03 Rock Paper Scissors*
AE-04 Royal Shrovetide Football*
AE-05 Cheese Rolling*
AE-06 Poohsticks
AE-07 Chess Boxing*
AE-08 Caber Toss*
AE-09 Sack Races*
AE-10 Roller Derby*

Into the Unknown

Allen & Ginter has had a couple of sets dedicated to sailors and pirates but this is the first mini set to celebrate (mostly) people who had to trek across the land to discover new places.  The first 15 cards in this insert set could be found in packs of Allen & Ginter while the final card of the set (Cortes) was only found in those special binders sold by Topps that I mentioned previously in the post.

Checklist:
ITU-01 Christopher Columbus
ITU-02 Ferdinand Magellan
ITU-03 Vasco da Gama
ITU-04 Leif Ericson
ITU-05 John C. Fremont
ITU-06 Vitus Bering
ITU-07 Louis Hennepin
ITU-08 Henry Hudson
ITU-09 Pedro Teixeira
ITU-10 Marco Polo
ITU-11 Francisco Pizarro
ITU-12 Lewis & Clark
ITU-13 Amerigo Vespucci
ITU-14 John Cabot
ITU-15 Jacques Marquette
ITU-16 Hernan Cortes

Larger than Life

I'm reading a book right now all about Greek mythology so the idea of "larger than life" characters kind of appeals to me currently.  This particular set is basically an "American mythology" set.  I say mythology because the best myths usually combine elements of truth along with elements of the gods/supernatural/etc.  One could argue that many of the subjects in this set fit into the mythology mold.  One that doesn't quite fit that would be Pocahontas but she's one of the six cards you could only acquire via binder purchases so she's only sort of, kind of a member of this set.

Checklist:
LTL-01 Paul Bunyan
LTL-03 Casey Jones
LTL-04 John Henry
LTL-05 Rip Van Winkle
LTL-06 Johnny Appleseed
LTL-07 Davy Crockett
LTL-08 Giacomo Casanova
LTL-09 William Tell
LTL-10 Hiawatha
LTL-11 Sasquatch
LTL-12 Pocahontas

Little Lions

Are you a cat person?  If so, then Little Lions might be perfect for you.  I've tried hard not to put too much of my own thoughts in my year-by-year write ups (I'll be saving my own opinions on the various sets for when the actual bracket starts).  I don't want to sway the vote in any way for now.  But for this set, I will say that since I'm mildly allergic to cats I probably won't be voting for Little Lions as my favorite set any time soon!  Also, the 16th card in this set is another binder only card.

Checklist:
LL-01 Persian Cat
LL-02 Japanese Bobtail
LL-03 American Shorthair
LL-04 Siamese
LL-05 Cornish Rex
LL-06 Maine Coon
LL-07 Oriental Bicolor
LL-08 Russian Blue
LL-09 Sphynx
LL-10 Savannah
LL-11 Scottish Fold
LL-12 Norwegian Forest Cat
LL-13 Exotic
LL-14 Birman
LL-15 Abyssinian
LL-16 Turkish Van

Outlaws, Bandits & All-Around Ne'er Do Wells

All sorts of ruffians make up this particular mini set (with the final card once again being a binder only card).  I don't usually put Robin Hood, Bonnie and Clyde, and Blackbeard all in the same category of human being but I guess it's all based on your perspective (at least in the case of Robin Hood and Blackbeard).

Checklist:
OBA-01 Robin Hood
OBA-02 Jesse James
OBA-03 Billy the Kid
OBA-04 Butch Cassidy
OBA-05 Juro Janosik
OBA-06 Bonnie and Clyde
OBA-07 William Kidd
OBA-08 Edward "Blackbeard" Teach
OBA-09 Jean Lafitte
OBA-10 Ishikawa Goemon
OBA-11 Ned Kelly

Urban Fauna

This is the only other mini set that I haven't completed from 2014 Allen & Ginter (with the Athletic Endeavors being the other which I already discussed).  I didn't do well with either of the rare mini insert sets in 2014, only 1 Athletic card and only 4 of the Urban Fauna.  If I'm being honest, this is another set that I may simply give up on trying to complete.

Checklist:
UF-01 Sciurus Carolinensis*
UF-02 Periplaneta Americana*
UF-03 Procyon Lotor
UF-04 Didelphis Virginiana Opossum
UF-05 Anolis Equestris*
UF-06 Tadarida Brasilensis
UF-07 Mephitis Mephitis
UF-08 Lymantria Dispar Dispar*
UF-09 Rattus Norvegicus*
UF-10 Columba Livia*

Where Nature Ends

Where Nature Ends is the largest of the mini insert sets for 2014 (25 cards plus the one extra from the binders).  The set is full of all sorts of artists, though I must admit that I don't get the reference for "where nature ends" as it relates to artists.  Also, I find it amusing that Topps made the first four artists in the set the four that the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles were named after.  There's no way that is a coincidence, right?

Checklist:
WNE-01 Leonardo da Vinci
WNE-02 Michelangelo
WNE-03 Donatello
WNE-04 Raphael
WNE-05 Rembrandt van Rijn
WNE-06 Masaccio
WNE-07 Vincent van Gogh
WNE-08 Edgar Degas
WNE-09 Sandro Botticelli
WNE-10 John Trumbull
WNE-11 Gilbert Stuart
WNE-12 Francisco de Goya
WNE-13 Martin Johnson Heade
WNE-14 Winslow Homer
WNE-15 James Whistler
WNE-16 Pieter Bruegel
WNE-17 Diego Velazquez
WNE-18 Albrecht Durer
WNE-19 Edouard Manet
WNE-20 Paul Cezanne
WNE-21 Giotto di Bondone
WNE-22 Claude Monet
WNE-23 J.M.W. Turner
WNE-24 Paul Gauguin
WNE-25 William Blake
WNE-26 Jan Vermeer

World's Deadliest Predators

And finally, we reach the last set for 2014:  World's Deadliest Predators.  By 2014, Topps had done a number of insert sets featuring dangerous animals but this was the first to have animals of all types included (bears, alligators, birds, lions, snakes, etc. all in one set).  The Cone Snail (card #22) was the binder only card.

Checklist:
WDP-01 Polar Bear
WDP-02 Hippopotamus
WDP-03 Blue-Ringed Octopus
WDP-04 Lonomia
WDP-05 Great White Shark
WDP-06 African Lion
WDP-07 Black Mamba
WDP-08 Cape Buffalo
WDP-09 Poison Dart Frog
WDP-10 Hyena
WDP-11 Komodo Dragon
WDP-12 Clouded Leopard
WDP-13 Brazilian Wandering Spider
WDP-14 Saltwater Crocodile
WDP-15 American Alligator
WDP-16 Piranha
WDP-17 Black Eagle
WDP-18 Gray Wolf
WDP-19 Wolverine
WDP-20 Honey Badger
WDP-21 Australian Box Jellyfish
WDP-22 Cone Snail

Now it is your turn!  Leave a comment below with your favorite mini set from 2014.  We are getting closer and closer to having our final bracket seeding all set - your favorite insert set needs your vote!

Comments

  1. One of the best years for mini A&G inserts! Have to go with Outlaws, Bandits... really just for the name more than the content. "& All-around Ne'er Do Wells" is just funny.

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  2. Putting my vote in for Outlaws and Bandits!

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  3. World's Deadliest Predators is one of my favorite mini sets of all-time. It's such a cool concept. Like each card should have its own horror movie. Voting for that.

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  4. I think I'll have to go with Outlaws, Bandits... as well.

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  5. Going with the Outlaws today.

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  6. Deadliest Predators. Watch out for those Cone Snails!

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  7. This is a heck of a year for mini sets. Woah! Going with Little Lions.

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  8. Another one for Little Lions!

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  9. Can one of these sets take the place of one of the lamer sets from previous years? Yikes! There's some good ones. But as amazing as a couple of them are.... Little Lions for the win!

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  10. Where Nature Ends gets my vote. Although it looks like it's the only vote it'll receive. Lol.

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  11. Voting is closed for 2014!

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