It was just about a month ago when I last looked at the Topps traded set. Today, I'll finish up with a review from the 2005 season up to today.
The 2005 set was set apart from the previous traded releases by sheer numbers; the set was Topps largest Traded ever, with 330 cards. And the number has stayed at 330 ever since, including the 2011 version, set for release in a couple weeks.
In addition to more cards, the set also got a new name, "Updates and Highlights." Traded and Rookies was out. Topps also returned to releasing factory sets, at least for a few years. The 2005, 2006, and 2007 boxes are below:
In 2006 Topps cut the base set to 660 cards, with 330 in each of the two series. With the Update set also having 330 cards, some collectors began referring to the Update set as "Series 3." That makes sense to me.
In 2008 Topps eliminated the factory set, so it was back to hand collating. And last season, the set underwent a name change again. This time, it was simply "Update Series." It looks like 2011 will keep that name.
So there you have it, from 132 Traded cards in 1981 to 330 Update Series cards in 2010. If you include the traded sets from 1972, 1974, and 1976, the total traded/update checklist includes 5,388 cards.
Now, lets take at a Cubs card from 2005 - 2010
2005 - 10 Cubs....A nice career milestone for Greg Maddux
2006 - 4 Cubs...That is a crazy-low number of Cubs in a 330 card set. That tells you just how bad things got in Dusty's last season. Carlos Zambrano led the team with 16 wins; Rich Hill was second with...only 6!
2007 - 16 Cubs....I guess they cleaned house after the last place finish in 2006!....This is Carlos Marmol's first card
2008 - 15 Cubs....Putting eight players on the All Star team will boost your team's number in the Update set. Dempster struck out the side during his one inning of work in the All Star game.
2009 - 11 Cubs...Randy Wells pitching in spring training on March 17.
2010 - 13 Cubs....Sean Marshall, making his fourth consecutive appearance in the Update set, and it looks like 2011 will keep the streak alive. One of these years he will crack the base set!