Tuesday, July 29, 2014

1993 Finest Cubs

I've got my run of Topps Finest in hand now, all 144 cards, and without any stickers (yes, I decided to take the protective coating off of the cards).  I'll be showing the brand year by year over the next several weeks.

Today, I've got the initial issue of Finest, from 1993.

The set was groundbreaking in a couple ways.  First, it was Topps' entry into the high-end market.  Seven-card packs had a retail price of $3.99, but as popularity of the product soared, packs were fetching $20 each.

Finest introduced chrome cards to the hobby.  In just a few years, the hobby has gone from cardboard, to glossy paper, and now to chrome.  In addition to chrome, the set also has the first refractor parallels.  Where would rainbows be today without Finest?

The set was a hobby-only product.  Topps limited production to 4,000 cases, meaning there are about 30,000 copies of each base card.

The set had 199 cards, an unusual number.  Why not add one more for an even 200?  Of the 199, there were just six Cubs.


The big three hitters were all included - Grace, Sosa, and Sandberg.


Three pitchers were the others.

I wasn't collecting much in 1993, so I don't have any memory of the wow factor that these must have produced. They're not big deal today, but were real mind-blowers 21 years ago.


  1. I collected comics in the 90s. These cards sort of symbolize that decade. In your face, flashy, limited, probably a bunch of variants.

  2. Great post! You're right. The 1993 Topps Finest Refractors were trend-setters for sure. Thanks for taking me back. :)

  3. 1993 was just about when I got out of the hobby... I don't remember much of a wow factor, but I can tell you for certain that Jose Guzman and Mike Mogan are not the first names that come to mind when I think of Baseball's Finest.