Here’s the skinny on the just released 2007 Upper Deck Black Baseball:
Suggested Retail Price: $250 (I got mine for $210 as a pre-sell, including shipping. Seems like you can get much better prices now after the release)
2 packs per box
1 card per pack
Yep thats right… $125 per card!! The upside is that every card in the set is autographed and numbered to 99 or less, so you are guaranteed 2 low numbered autos per box. The down side is the checklist is pretty weak. This is definitely hit-or-miss with probably more misses than hits.
The design of the cards is really sharp. That’s what attracted me to this product. Here’s what you can expect:
Most of the base cards I’ve seen have some great patches. The Base Cards are actually some of the best in the set, so count yourself lucky if you get one.
Rookie cards have a manufactured flag patch and show the rookie card logo. All of the big rookies are included (Joba Chamberlain, Dice-K, Tim Lincecum, Ryan Braun). There is also a Pride of the Nation set for veterans.
Lustrous - Numbered to 50
PETG card, which basically means plastic. The autos are on-card and the area where the player signs is see-through which is pretty neat because you can see the auto from the back of the card. There are also versions with GU jersey pieces in place of the player’s initials.
Prodigious - Numbered to 75
By far the least exciting cards in the set. Single autos, not very interesting design-wise, and some real clunkers in the checklist (Sergio Mitre, Dan Uggla, Aaron Harang… ). There are quad jersey parallels of this set as well, but still not too exciting.
Same story as Prodigious. I would be pretty mad if I pulled a scrub from this set.
Gameday Autos - Numbered to 50
Another single auto set, and only slightly more interesting. There are three versions, ticket, lineup, and box score. The design incorporates a player’s performance in specific games, showing the box score/lineup card from that game.
All the sets have lower numbered parallels to 10 and 1/1’s. There are also randomly inserted white packs which contain a 1/1 autograph or 1/1 autographed printing plate.
You can also pull double,triple, quad, and eight (!) auto cards.
The best possible card you can pull is one of the Upper Deck Mystery Dual Cuts Exchange cards, but those are once in a lifetime pulls. Fun to dream about, but don’t expect to pull one.
The Bottom Line
The Good: Great design. I love the base card design and the great patch pieces, the manufactured flags, and the laser cut manufactured bat barrels. The Lustrous plastic cards are interesting and I love the on-card autos. The Game Day variations are pretty neat too, especially for player collectors.
The Bad: Ok, its only 2 cards, but its 2 guaranteed autos numbered to 99 or less. Thats how I justified the price. The only problem is, the checklist is wayyyyyy too big. Upper Deck shouldn’t have to scrape the bottom of the barrel to come up with names for a high-end product. Its probably nearly impossible to get your value back in one of these boxes. The cards look great, but looks aren’t everything. You need a solid checklist to back it up.
The Ugly: The $250 suggested retail price. Prices for these boxes are dropping quickly. I would definitely not pay more than $200 at this point.
The Verdict: This one gets a skip it from me, unless you want to chase after those mystery exchanges. If there’s a specific card you really want, get it on Ebay. Of course if you are a Texas Oil Baron or a hotel heiress then go ahead and bust a few cases. At the very least you’ll get some pretty sweet looking cards.