Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Topps Heritage Side By Side: 1961 / 2010

It's interesting to compare the originals with the Heritage cards.

Let's start with the team cards:

The Heritage version is very faithful to the original. The only odd thing I noticed is that the logo on the Heritage card seems to be too high, its gone beyond the green box. Was that just an error on the Cubs card or are other team cards that way too?

Manager cards: Topps didn't issue a Cubs manager card in 1961 because the 1961 Cubs didn't have a manager. This was the first season of the lame-brained College of Coaches. I wonder if that is why Topps didn't give Lou Piniella a card?

The star of the 1961 team was Ernie Banks. I wonder why Topps went with a hatless card? Wasn't that usually saved for the guys who got traded? At least they gave Derrek Lee a hat!

Here are pitchers Don Cardwell and Ryan Dempster. The gripe I have with the Heritage cards is that they got the pitcher's pose wrong. Topps usually showed the pitcher in his follow through, like the Cardwell card. The 1961 Cubs set has three posed pitchers and they are all in the follow-through. None of the three pitchers in the Heritage set are shown that way.

The catchers look like this, both with standard catchers poses. But I do have a question for Geovany Soto....do you plan to wear a chest protector this year? The card would have looked a little more believable is he was wearing one!

The rookie cards look like this. The 1961 set featured a pretty good one! So now all Tyler Colvin has to do is match Billy Williams' career and end up in the Hall of Fame!

This is my biggest disappointment of the Heritage set. They didn't make a "Batter Bafflers" card. Dempster, Lilly, and Zambrano are three pretty good pitchers and have all made the All-Star team. So why did you skip this one, Topps? I'd make one if I could find a decent picture of two of the three together.

Finally, a little color comparison. The 1961 set featured a variety of color combination on the bottom of the card. A majority of the 1961 Cubs had the name box yellow. The breakdown is this

6 Yellow/Red
5 Yellow/Green
4 Yellow/Orange
1 Yellow/Blue
3 Red/Yellow
2 Red/Orange
1 Red/.Green
1 Orange/Blue
1 Orange/Green
2 Green/Yellow

Heritage matched that! It, too, had a majority of the cards with a yellow name box.

6 Yellow/Red
1 Yellow/Blue
1 Yellow/Green
2 Red/Orange
2 Orange/Green
1 Blue/Yellow

So Heritage earned some bonus points for getting the colors right!

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