Despite that, these are not my first cards from 2014 Stadium Club. In fact, I composed a good deal of this post before the box even arrived. As you will see, I've already developed some pretty favorable impressions.
|2014 Stadium Club Rainbow #66 Matt Cain|
This one of Cain and two of his rotation buddies is a Rainbow parallel, and while there are several parallel sets, Topps hasn't gone overboard like they do in their flagship set and made a dozen different parallel colors. In fact, that's one of the benefits (and requirements) of a full-bleed design. The photography is so good that it doesn't even need a border.
The only thing I think is missing are "First Day Issue" parallels. I'd much rather see that (especially if they followed historical precedent and did a print run of 2,000) than the numerous colored parallels that Topps is becoming known for. During the overproduction era, First Day Issue cards were probably my favorite parallels, even more so than ToppsGold.
|1994 Stadium Club First Day Issue #351 Scott Livingstone|
I am also partial to the mid-1990s TSC logo rather than the current logo.
|1995 Stadium Club #233 Shawn Green|
I've heard complaints about this set not having enough "hits" for high-end collectors. I don't get it. Three autographs per hobby box? In which galaxy is that not enough? In addition to the Charlie Blackmon autograph that I got from Julie at A Cracked Bat, this box also included on-card autographs from the American League: an Oriole and two Mariners.
|2014 Stadium Club Autographs #SCA-RE Roenis Elias (AU)|
In fact, this box would have been great for a Mariners fan, as one of the parallels is of ex-Yankee Robinson Cano in a sharp-looking Seattle throwback uniform.
|2014 Stadium Club Rainbow #38 Robinson Cano|
|2014 Stadium Club Gold #190 Todd Frazier|
|2014 Stadium Club Electric Foil #65 Yu Darvish|
In fact, this might be the lone complaint I have about 2014 Stadium Club. Other than Gold, the special finish of the parallel cards is really hard to see unless the light is just perfect. I had to do a couple runs through the stack under bright light to make sure I didn't overlook one. I suppose it's a small price to pay for full-bleed printing, a design element that has all but vanished since Upper Deck lost their license.
On to the inserts, and a great shot of the Say Hey Kid interacting with some late-'50s fans. Part of what makes this product rather enjoyable is the inclusion of numerous retired stars and hall-of-famers.
|2014 Stadium Club Field Access #FA-5 Willie Mays|
|2014 Stadium Club Future Stars Die Cut #FS-2 Gerrit Cole|
Another player in that 10-card Future Stars insert set is Masahiro Tanaka, who after a short but unbelievably dominant stretch for the Yankees last year, is facing elbow problems. I didn't pull his Future Stars die-cut, but I did find his Triumvirate card with an even more elaborate design.
|2014 Stadium Club Triumvirates Luminous #T7B Masahiro Tanaka|
|2003 Topps Finest Refractors #66 A.J. Burnett|
|2014 Stadium Club Legends Die Cut #LDC-8 Ken Griffey Jr.|
That about does it for the "hits" from this discounted hobby box. I have a stack of base cards picked out for part 2 of this post, and it'll be a challenge to whittle it down. The photos are just that good.