Stadium Club

Around a week ago, I wrote about picking up the obligatory round of Series 2 cards. Well, when I grabbed the hanger pack, I managed to finally find some 2017 Stadium club on the shelves, so I nabbed a blaster. Let’s take a look at what I landed!

I managed to land just two Astros in the blaster – both former players now that Hernandez was moved to Toronto in the Francisco Liriano trade. That one was a real bummer for me – not only did we not really get the arm we wanted, but I really liked Teo. He had a nice debut when he came up last fall, and looked primed for a hot start this season when an injury sidelined him almost immediately. Hopefully Liriano finds his form quickly and this trade works out. It certainly didn’t help things that we lost our beloved Nori Aoki as well, although Derek Fisher definitely looks ready for prime time.

Before we dive into the base, let’s talk about the inserts. These shiny beauties are the real winners for me. They scream late 90’s, and I LOVE IT.

Contact Sheet, however, is in its third year, and I believe it’s time it was retired. What the heck is with that font? Something about the Scoreless Streak insert just doesn’t do it for me.

There were, of course, parallels. So let’s talk about those! I pulled Gold Foil versions of Mookie Betts and Kyle Seager, both of whom are depicted celebrating with teammates. These are pretty nice. I’m keeping the Betts, but I can’t decide on the Seager. The more I look at it, the more I realize how awkward of a position he’s in here.

I pulled two more parallels out of the box. At first, I didn’t even realize that the Nolan was a Black Foil parallel – I just saw the Rangers hat and went, psh, another card of Nolan in a Rangers uni. Apparently Texas gets the bulk of his 2017 cards, because that’s all I’ve seen. I figured the Snider was just a B&W photo until I looked up the checklist and discovered it’s a Sepia parallel. It’s a pretty nice card of ol’ Duke, who looks locked in during BP.

If I have one bone to pick with the set this year, it’s the crazy ligatures tailing off from the end of the last name, and the fact that they almost always obstruct part of the team name on the vertical cards. Also, the big script last names very much remind me of 2007 Ultra – which is not a bad thing, just an observation.

As has been the case for the past few years, the photography in Stadium Club is outstanding. This year, we can thank dear old Sooz for that, as she hand selected all the photos from the Getty archive. I think this year’s checklist – at least what I’ve seen of it – is one of the best compilations of photography that I’ve seen so far. So let’s salivate over some excellent photography, shall we?

With as much contempt as I have for the Western Louisiana Rangers, I just can’t hate this guy. He’s all class, he’s super solid, and he’s a future Hall of Famer. He just picked up his 3000th hit, further cementing his legacy, and I’ll shed a tiny tear when he chooses to hang them up.

This might be my favorite photo from the entire blaster. This is the kind of photo I would take, because it totally breaks the rule about leaving room for movement. Plus, it’s Cutch. It’s been so great to see his season pick up – his June-July was incredible.

Probably my favorite photo of one of the retired guys in the set. How can you not love this one?

This Brian Dozier card didn’t impress me too much when I first flipped through the stack, but then I took a longer look at it and saw the giant “HOME RUN” letters behind him. This is another sublimely stupendous card. Good call, Sooz!

Two more excellent photo choices here. The Wizard is a keeper for sure, and I’m a sucker for a fantastic black and white photo with great contrast. The Sonny Gray is just great, and I love it when Oakland wears the yellow uniforms. It’s a bummer that he’s going to probably spend the rest of his days in pinstripes.
Oh, and speaking of pinstripes, I pulled another card that I’m sure Sooz will love:

It may not be the Yankee rookie that everyone is salivating over, but I’ll take it! Not a bad hit at all. He’s up for grabs if you’ve got something nice and comparable of the Astros persuasion.

So overall, a great blaster. It was hard not to scan every card in the box – in fact I think I wound up doing about half of them anyway. Great job Sooz!

 – Marc

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