A favorite for many, 2021 Topps Series 1 Baseball brings collectors another update of the long-running product.
Similar to last year's flagship set, there is an anniversary to celebrate. This time, Topps is honoring 70 years of baseball cards with a party for 50 fans. Very lucky collectors can find one of the 25 tickets inserted in random Series 1 packs.
Estimated Release Date: February 10, 2021
HTA Jumbo Configuration: 46 cards per pack, 10 packs per box, 6 boxes per case
Adding to the flagship selection is 2021 Topps Series 2 Baseball.
If you are just looking for the base cards, don't forget about 2021 Topps Baseball Complete Factory Set.
See also: 2020 Topps Series 1 Baseball Cards
The new flagship collecting season begins with 330 base cards, including top veterans and rookies, as well as Future Stars, League Leaders, Team Cards and World Series Highlights subsets. If the set size is correct, this is a decrease compared to the normal 350-card flagship sets of the past.
The 2021 Topps Series 1 Baseball checklist also works in the standard selection of parallels, plus the all-new Platinum Anniversary (#/70) edition.
Per Topps, "A printing error has been uncovered on the 2021 Topps Baseball Series 1 base card parallels. The Platinum Anniversary Parallel (#’d to 70) and the 70th Anniversary Parallel (#’d 1 of 1) have printed using the same ink colors and patterns. The cards have been sequentially numbered to the correct quantities (70 and 1 respectively) and we have corrected this error for future iterations of or Flagship brand. We apologize for any confusion this may cause with our collectors."
2021 Topps Series 1 Baseball Base Parallel Breakdown
In addition, the Hobby-only Clear parallels have 10 copies per card. However, the low-numbered series does not apply to the entire base set.
Moving to the inserts, most of the choices are new, as well. Featuring current players and retired legends, 70 Years of Topps Baseball covers seven decades of designs in the 70-card set.
The History of Topps turns the focus to Topps itself via 10 cards that look back at key moments and subjects from Topps' past. In addition, Topps Through the Years works in 25 stars on some of the most iconic designs from the Topps portfolio.
Yet another cardboard celebration is on tap with 1986 Topps Baseball's 35th anniversary.
Part of a 70-card continuation line, the Topps Platinum Players Die-Cuts insert aims to identify the 70 greatest players on Topps cards. Series 1 has the first 25 players in the set.
However, it's not all about the action on the field. Stars in Service features top players who also give back.
These five inserts come as Blue, Black (#/299), Platinum Anniversary (#/70), Red (#/10), and Gold (1/1) parallels.
Taking inspiration from the 1990 Topps Double Header cards, Topps Double Headers pairs the rookie card and final Topps card for 25 key names.
And, finally, collectors can dive into the new season of Home Run Challenge with one card per Hobby/Jumbo box.
Of course, there are hits to be found in 2021 Topps Series 1 Baseball, including debuting 70 Years of Baseball Autographs and 70 Years of Baseball Dual Autographs (#/5). Single-player parallels include Black (#/199), Gold (#/50), Red (#/25) and Platinum (1/1).
There's also the on-card 1986 Topps Baseball Autograph line, with Black (#/199), Gold (#/50), Red (#/25 - Hobby) and Platinum (1/1 - Hobby/Jumbo) versions.
Collectors can revisit the 2020 season in the Postseason Performance Autograph (#/50 or less) and World Series Champions Autograph (#/50 or less) sets. These include Red (#/25) and Platinum (1/1) parallels.
Other choices include 70 Years of Topps Baseball Autographs (#/10 or less), Stars in Service Autographs (#/10 or less) and Topps Platinum Players Die-Cuts Autographs (#/10 or less), plus Cut Signatures (1/1).
Like always, the memorabilia selection includes commemorative relics exclusive to Hobby and Jumbo boxes. 2021 Topps Series 1 Baseball offers Iconic Card Patches with the 50 all-time best cards in Topps history redone as jumbo patches. Meanwhile, Spring Training Cap Logo Patches is for current stars.
Look for Blue, Black (#/299), Platinum Anniversary (#/70), Red (#/10), Gold (1/1), and Autograph (#/10 or less) editions.
Standard relics consist of 1986 Topps Baseball Relics, Major League Material Relics, Postseason Performance Relics (#/99), World Series Champion Relics (#/99) and the one-of-one In the Name Relics with game-worn nameplates.
That leaves only the auto relics, including Major League Material Autograph Relics (#/50 or less), Postseason Performance Autograph Relics (#/50 or less), World Series Champion Autograph Relics (#/50 or less) and Topps Reverence Autographed Patch (#/10 - Hobby/Jumbo). These signed cards add Red (#/5) and Platinum (1/1) parallels.
In addition, collectors can find rare buyback and sketch cards in 2021 Topps Series 1 Baseball. With one card each from all 70 years, the one-of-one History of Topps Baseball Buyback cards come encased. Hand-drawn versions include standard Sketch cards and Shaped Sketch cards. The shaped edition is limited to 70 total cards that are exclusive to Hobby/Jumbo boxes.
Among the other odds and ends, Hobby Jumbo boxes are home to the 1951 Topps Major League All-Stars Box Toppers. These feature 25 players, while the on-card Autograph parallel is numbered to 10 or less.
Bringing chromium to the equation, the 2021 Topps Series 1 Silver Packs Promo promises one pack per Hobby box and two per Hobby jumbo box.
Collectors can chase limited parallels and autographs in the bonus packs.
Similar to the Million Card Rip Party in 2020, the 2021 Topps Series 1 Baseball Rip Party involves breakers and a live break one day ahead of the official release date. View the full details.
Still skewing to a more modern style, the Jo Adell rookie card mock-up showcases the return of a full border for the first time in several years. While there have been partial borders in recent series, the last full border came in 2015.
Collectors will also likely notice the 70-year logo in silver in place of the standard Topps logo.
At first glance, the diagonal nameplate does make it a little tough to pick out the name.
Naturally, we are curious about the back, as well, but that image was not provided.
If you are wondering how the design compares to previous styles, check out the Topps flagship gallery from 1951 to 2021 to get a full rundown of the many looks used by Topps over the years.
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