Monday, January 7, 2019

The Favorites of 2018

About five weeks ago I challenged my fellow sports card bloggers to pick their favorite card of 2018. Details of the contest can be found here. We went through the same exercise in 2017 & 2016. Last year the big winners were Topps' flagship product, the Chicago Cubs and Sandy Koufax. Being selected ten, six and two times, respectively. Which brand, team and player will come out on top in 2018?

Read on to find out!

To start things off, Adam Sanders, of Cardboard Clubhouse, chooses Nolan Ryan from Panini's 2018 Donruss release.
 I really dig the wavy lines which are reminiscent of the 1984 product.

Kin, author of Bean's Ballcard Blog, gives us NINETY cards. You might be thinking, "I thought we could only choose one?"  Well, that's true. It just so happens that Kin has 90+ copies of this card.
You're looking at a sampling of his Harrison Musgrave collection from the Heritage High Series. Musgrave played ball at Kin's alma mater. I love the personal connection!

Fuji, the most prolific commenter within our blogging circle, offers up our first "hit" of the year. His post title for his entry, over at The Chronicles of Fuji, had me scratching my head at first.
Bill James from Topps Archives Fan Favorites Autograph! Very nice!

Billy Kingsley brings us our first hockey card via his blog Cardboard History.
The Golden Knights were quite the story and were given a 50-card box set by Upper Deck to commemorate the success they had during their inaugural season.

Topps NOW was the most popular selection in 2016 among bloggers and Henry Blanchette gives us our first look at the 2018 edition.
Cardboard Greats gives us a look at many of the excellent Red Sox cards so it's no surprise Henry went this direction. I love the celebration shots!

Stadium has become a steady force in these favorite card summaries and I doubt 2018 will be any different. Paul, of Scribbled Ink, has selected a beautiful play at the plate card from SC.
Jake Lamb is definitely safe, right? Look how the third base chalk is smeared in a line toward home plate. So cool.

I think this one qualifies as our first card from Topps' flagship product, although it is an insert and carries super mojo refractor autograph properties with it!
Yep, Collecting Cutch gives us our first 1-of-1 card for this year's sampling. Boom! Impressive!

Laurens, of Card Buzz, has chosen a card of a player who had the hobby buzzing most of 2018. Here we have Shohei Ohtani's Hertiage Action Image Variation card.
A two-way player is just what baseball needed to bring some youthful fan interest back to the sport. I, for one, am hoping Ohtani heals up good as new and keeps slugging and pitching.

John's Big League Baseball Blog has chosen our second card from Topps' flagship.
It took two years for John Hicks to get his first Tigers card, but I think this action shot may have been worth the wait. Tools of Ignorance for the win!

buckstorecards, the proprietor of Sportscards From The Dollar Store, presents us with our second hockey card.
Scott Foster was the emergency goalie for the Blackhawks and saw 14 minutes of action in which he stopped all of the opponent's shots. That's a pretty cool story! This O-Pee-Chee card is also the blank back version. Very nice!

DMA, the author of From a 1980s Baseball Card Collector, doesn't have much 2018 product in his collection, as his blog title might suggest, but he's chosen our second Andrew McCutchen card!
You may notice the "Opening Day" at the top of the card, but this actually an insert from Topps' flagship product. That breaks the tie with Heritage for most represented set.

Jon, a fellow Cub fan and author of Community Gum, gives us . . . wait . . . what the . . . ?
A White Sox card? Okay, okay. It is a pretty cool card of The Big Hurt from Topps' Big League set.

Diamond Jesters selected a fun card. Hmmm, that seems quite a appropriate.
Matt's choice is Zach Godley's Stadium Club card. The Diamondbacks are the most represented team so far. I bet you didn't see that coming!

Rekindling the Cardboard Flame, penned by ketchupman36 gives us our first look at a football card.
This is Luke Falk's card from Score. Falk plays for the Dolphins, but this card features him in his Washington State uniform. ketchupman36 is actually working on completing the rainbow. Good luck!

The Angels In Order has chosen . . . huh . . . a card of the Reds' Billy Hamilton? Why do things have to be so complicated?
This is our first look at Opening Day, although Tom does state in his post he wishes he had the regular Topps card because the OD logo is a bit distracting. Good call.

All is right in the world again. Wrigley Wax, a Cubs fan Billy Williams super collector, has restored my faith in the card community by selecting . . .
Yes, a Billy Williams card. This one is an insert from Topps' flagship product and a beautiful one at that. Check out the palm tree in the background! I'm guessing this photo was taken on Catalina Island during spring training?

gcrl tried to jump the gun with his favorite card of the year back in August on his blog titled cards as i see them.
To quote gcrl on his selection of Ian Kinsler's Gallery card, "it's art. and it's my favorite card of the year - from the "other" team in "los angeles", no less." It seems to be a mini theme this year: team collectors choosing cards from "other" teams.

Commishbob, of The Five Tool Collector, offers up this gem of a quote before choosing his card, "Me picking a 2018 card is like a goat farmer trying to find a Kentucky Derby entrant in his barn. It doesn't take long to to scan the possibilities and none of them are likely winners. But, oh well."
I love the sense of humor in our community!
Pat Mahomes was another hot "rookie" this year. This card is a pretty slick looking Panini offering from their Elite brand. It'll be interesting to see how far the "rookie" QB can take the Chiefs in the playoffs this year.

I've seen all the entrants and IF I was going to select a winner I would pick SumoMenkoMan's card. We'll have to see what the randomizer says though!
I don't visit the Japanese Sumo Wrestling Cards and Menko blog as much as I should, but I'm going to make more of an effort in 2019.
Sumo wrestlers and beer on a Baseball Magazine (MMB) card. Most excellent.

Tales of a Cardboard Addict, crafted by Toy Junkie, provides us with another autograph.
This card is a reprint of Tom Glavine's 1988 Topps card, numbered out of 150, and it is an autograph insert (Topps Rookie History) within Topps Archives. I really like Glavine's signature.

Chromey refractor goodness comes to us from The Loss Collector. AJ has been on the Topps NOW bandwagon the past two years, but decided to fall off for this year's edition.
The 1983 design is classic and the shininess takes it to the next level in my book! Anyone else think that Giancarlo will go crazy with the homers again this year in the Bronx now that he entering his second year? Sometime players with big expectations perform better in their second season with a new team.

Peter, from Baseball Every Night, gives us our third Stadium Club card.
Gorgeous card. The team . . . uh . . . well, I do like Dexter Fowler! Peter, no worries. I don't believe the randomizer has the same feelings I do about the Cardinals. LOL

Cardboard Jones, Tridents and Trading Cards, gives us a representative for the Mariners.
This is one of Topps "On Demand" products and I believe they are more specifically known as 3D Motion cards, although most people compare them to Sportflics or Kelloggs cards. From what I know there was a press run of 269 of the 100-card sets. Interesting. I may have to check and see if I can snag the Cubs!

Angus, of Dawg Day Cards, gives us another Panini football card.
This one is of offensive lineman Joe Thomas and is from Donruss' Elite Series. Wow, check out the background on that card! Pretty fancy for a guy who played in the trenches!  Honestly though, I would love to see more cards of offensive lineman in football and role players in baseball.

Cards that never were is a fun blog, where Jeremya1um creates cards of players Topps ignored. He couldn't choose one of his creations and instead selects a Heritage card and our second Mariners card.
This card Jeremy had signed by Kyle Seager at Tropicana Field with his son. His son's first in-person autograph. Pretty cool story!

Nick, from Dime Boxes, chimed in with his Top 10 cards, which is definitely a must read.
He went with Stadium Club's Ichiro card. Great card of a great player!

Base Set Calling gives us our second Shohei Ohtani card (and first Parker Bidwell and Troy Scribner cards).
He chose this card because it's a throwback to the days when rookie cards didn't have the little rookie logo AND you could still tell it was a rookie. Very nice.

NBP Guy, the authority on Japanese Baseball Cards, gives us our second card from a non-US brand.
This card is of Daichi Ohsera, of the Hiroshima Carp, on BBM's first version set. Wonderful photography.

General Aside: Bloggers are about as bad as high school students with the way they treat a deadline. LOL! Every card shared below this point was a last day entry!  But, they still count and are appreciated!

For the third straight year in a row Adam Kaningher, of Infield Fly Rule, takes a Rockies pitcher.
Maybe you noticed the film strip on the right side? That's the photographer's proof parallel, which is a case hit! Wow!

Night Owl chimes in with another flame throwing rookie from a Los Angeles team. No, it's not Shohei Ohtani this time . . .
Hot Take Alert: By this time next year Walker Buehler may be the best starter for the team that calls Chavez Ravine home.

Trevor, the author of the Bump and Run Football Card Blog, presents us with our second football player shown in his college uniform. This one shows Fred Warner (and his autograph) dressed in his logoless BYU uniform. Warner was drafted in the 3rd round by the 49ers.
Four football cards and they have been split right down the middle between NFL and college. Maybe that's the way it should be as we're right in the middle of prime football playoff season. Who's watching 'Bama and Clemson tonight?

The ever creative Gavin, of Baseball Card Breakdown fame, gives us our second superfractor!
FWIW, I would have allowed Gavin to chose one of his 2018 customs if he felt it was deserving. It's hard to argue with a superfractor auto of a guy who went your high school!

Stadium Fantasium, written by bbcardz, presents us with a classic looking example of Topps Heritage.
bbcardz shows this Welington Castillo card next to a 1969 Topps card of Duane Josephson and I couldn't stop comparing the two. Very cool.

Marcus, of all the way to the backstop, gives us our last entry before the deadline, and he did it in style by listing ten cards. I love a good countdown and Joey Lucchesi takes top billing in this one.
Fist bumps and Friday night browns. Baseball is a wonderful sport!

And just for good measure here is my favorite card once more, from Topps Flagship.

Here's a quick summary of the cards chosen this year:
Topps Flagship and it's inserts take home the top prize again this year. If you include Opening Day, Chrome and the 3D Motion card then that number swells to 12 appearances.
And the Mariners, Seager/Ichiro/Felix take home the top team? I didn't see that happening!

Now on to the contest portion of this post. Well, here's a wrinkle I wasn't prepared for. The randomizer is now charging $4.95 a month to use a list of names. Um, no. I'm not paying for that.

Luckily, as a teacher, I'm blessing being fairly adaptable. So, everyone has been assigned a number based on commenting order and you'll be placed into a random number generator:

Here's the method to my madness:
Here's the results:
I hope you were able to follow all of that.

The grand prize winner is #3 and the lucky last place contestant is #7.

Congrats to Fuji and Collecting Cutch on your first and last place victories, respectively. Fuji, I'll send you a blaster of 2019 Topps Series 1 when retail reaches my area. Collecting Cutch, you'll be rewarded for your hard earned last place finish, as well. Not sure what I'll send you yet, but something is better than nothing. Oh, I can guarantee it'll be card related. πŸ˜€ Oh, Collecting Cutch, please reach out with your mailing address. (mrcoach00 at yahoo dot com) Thanks!

Lastly, thank you to everyone who took the time to write up a blog post about their favorite 2018 card. I love having new material to read through and this year's offerings did not disappoint!

Oh, and if you didn't enter and are reading this, please consider jumping on board next year!

Thanks again!


  1. Excellent rundown. Thank you for another year of this contest.

  2. Thanks for the contest. You assigned me number 16 and it came up 28th in all three of the random lists. What are the odds of that happening??

  3. That Hicks is perfectly framed. I need a copy for my hidden gems binder.

  4. Congrats to the winners & thanks for the contest, Tom!

  5. Oh dear, I've missed the deadline again. Oh well.

  6. Thanks for the contest! My favorite thing about it was reading all of the awesome submissions. Anyways... after going back into the classroom today, I'm half asleep. I tried to understand your randomization, but after a few seconds, I just jumped down to the bottom for the big reveal. I'm so excited!

    P.S. By the way, I bought a BJ on eBay last week or the week before... and it finally arrived today. Nothing finer than an eBay BJ ;)

    1. By the way... just in case your students are reading these comments... BJ stands for Bill James.

  7. Thanks for doing the recap! I really enjoy seeing everyone's favorite card

  8. Every single one of those cards were worthy entries! Congrats to the winners and a thank you for running the contest!

  9. This is great -- thanks for doing this!

  10. Thanks for the contest and congrats to the winners!

  11. Great recap! Congrats to the winners and thanks for a great contest!

  12. Awesome recap. Thank you for a fun contest and lucky number #7 for the win. Woooooohoooo

  13. I missed seeing how the contest ended. I'm so pleased that you did this again and it's super cool to see people's favorite/best cards. Congrats to Fuji and Collecting Cutch on winning-winning and losing-winning.