The green tints on this years cards are just another of the different SP variations that Topps has put into Heritage over the years. Some pay homage to the original sets, others are just contrived ways of suckering us into chasing more cards and spending more cash.
The first year for variations was with the first release of Heritage in 2001.Cards #1-80 had both black and red back variations. This copied what Topps did in 1952.
Corey Patterson was the only Cubs player among #1-80.
In 2002, Topps had daytime and nighttime backgrounds on 10 cards. Lucky for me, none were Cubs, saving me a few dollars. I'm pretty sure that Topps didn't have different variations in 1953, so chalk this up as contrived.
The 2003 gimmick involved cards with two different team logos, the modern logo on the regular card and the team's old logo on an SP card. Sammy got the dual logo treatment.
Showing a lack of creativity, Topps repeated the two logo gimmick in 2004. This time, it was Moises Alou who got the double treatment. The dumb thing with this is that, again, it doesn't copy anything for 1954 or 1955; it was strictly a way to sell more cards. The only redeeming thing is that the old logo looks very cool, in my humble opinion, and if I make a comment on your blog, you'll see that logo.
The 2005 cards went back to the premise of copying the originals. In 1956 the first 180 cards could be found with either a white or gray back. Topps duplicated this with Heritage, and there were eight different Cubs with both cards. I have a tough time making out the difference. Here are the two versions of Carlos Zambrano's.
I got another break with the 2006 set as no Cubs were involved in any SP nonsense.
It was a short-lived break. In 2007, the gimmick was different coloring on the letters of the players name. Some 1958 cards had both white and yellow lettered versions, so naturally the same thing happened with Hertitage. Ryan Theriot was the Cubs lone dual card player.
In 2008 the variation was similar to 2001, with two different colored card backs. Derrek Lee, Rich Hill, Carlos Marmol, and Jeff Samardzija had both black and green cards. Here are Marmol's:
Both 2009 and 2010 were variation-free, which gave me the chance to same some $ that I could spend on the green tints this year. I am not aware of any major variations in the 1963 set, so I'm thinking I'll get a break next year.....unless Topps comes up with some contrived SP nonsense.