05 July 2011

topps outdoes itself and serves up variations - a side by side comparison of the 2009 dodgers

by now you know the drill.  topps put out blister pack team sets, and sometimes the cards were different from the flagship set.  2008 was a down year for dodger variations, but topps came back strong in 2009.  let's take a look.  as always, that's the regular topps card on the left, and the topps dodger set card on the right.  note the absence of manny ramirez from the team set - i suppose he was still unsigned when the checklist was being assembled.

anyway, here's number 'lad1' in the set, and for the second year in a row, it's russell  martin
if ever there was a card to not mess with, it was martin's regular issue topps card from the 2009 set.  my happiness in seeing a variation on the top card of the set was tempered by the fact it was martin's card.  still, variety is the spice of life, and i am happy to have it.

lad2 is clayton kershaw
2 for 2 in variations, but there is a serious lack of color on the team set card.  if only he were slightly rotated so we could see the red jersey number.  the photo comes off looking like something off of 2010 upper deck.

here's lad3 jonathan broxton
3 in, and we have 3 variations.  i like where this is going.  here i prefer the team set card.  brox is a little more menacing, while on the regular topps card, i am pretty sure he's just warming up.  that's based on the position of angel berroa's (?) blue glove behind him.

lad4 rafael furcal
gah. it's the same.  a nice card, though so i won't complain.

lad5 andre ethier
back to the variations, but i prefer the flagship.  poor logo placement by topps on the team card as well as a boring photo choice.

lad6 chad billingsley
same.  this is a lot like broxton's card, which is disappointing in general.  remember 2007 topps, with all those lookalike dodger cards from holman stadium?  that sucked.  plus, it looks like a billingsley warm up toss, too, because berroa is standing straight up in the background.

lad7 matt kemp
no diff, but not a bad card.

lad8 juan pierre

lad9 james loney
back to variations, but again, i prefer the flagship.  i'm not too crazy about all the mid-thigh cropped shots.

lad10 hiroki kuroda

lad11 blake dewitt
different but not as dynamic.

lad12 casey blake
not different.

lad13 mark loretta
hmm.  which is better, the series 2 loretta from a spring game against the white sox, or the airbrushed loretta that is basically him in a padres uni and a dodger helmet.  i'm not sure what to think.

lad14 hong-chih kuo
good golly miss molly!  topps didn't include kuo in series 1, 2 or the update set.  even after putting him in the team set, and even though he had appeared in 42 games in 2008.  obviously, advantage team set.

lad15 joe torre
i think i prefer the team set version of the walk to the mound.  perhaps joe is calling for kuo to be included in the set.  i find it interesting that he wears a watch, even while managing. 
well, that's it for 2009.  if you are keeping score, that's 8 photo variations, zero of those lame cropping variations, and one off the charts checklist variation.  a pretty good ratio given the sad stats from 2008.


John Bateman said...

Though I like the design better (2008) at least Topps gave you some interesting variations in 2009.

Also, Topps seems to love the Matt Kemp shot of him dropping his bat just as he swung and was getting out of the batters box. I think they used it for 2007 Bowman, 2008 Topps, 2009 Topps and maybe one or two other sets

Ryan aka Orioles Magic said...

I like your breakdown of the team set. Most years I like to buy the O's team set because it includes a player or two (generally relievers) who don't make it into the base set.

cubsfan731 said...

At first, I thought the Torre team-set card was a Wal-Mart black back. That's is one dark card.