Monday, September 3, 2018

2018 Topps Allen and Ginter Review - How Allen and Ginter pushes forward a diverse collecting tradition

Since the advent of Topps issuing the Allen and Ginter series, the legendary baseball card manufacturer has used Allen and Ginter to push the boundaries of a traditional baseball card set. With the release of 2018 Allen and Ginter, Topps continues in that tradition by highlighting not only top baseball players, but also actors, rappers, writers, and even a card dedicated to Bitcoin cryptocurrency.
2018 Topps Allen and Ginter Box / Topps
The diversity that Topps strives for with Allen and Ginter is what also makes it one of the company’s most annually polarizing issues. If you are of the “hip hop” generation, the inclusion of Biz Markie and Method Man will capture your attention, as well as seeing the cardboard debut of actor Michael Rapaport who cut his teeth in the landmark film Higher Learning alongside Ice Cube. Other non-playing personnel include HQ Trivia host Scott Rogowsky, 2017 J.G Taylor Spink Award winner Claire Smith, and sabermetrics pioneer Bill James.

2018 Topps Allen and Ginter Base Set / Topps
Some collectors will openly welcome the opportunity to land an autograph of one of these luminaries, or a grab a card celebrating the cryptocurrency craze in between the likes of Ronald Acuña Jr., Aaron Judge, and Mike Trout. For other consumers who are diametrically opposed to these trading-card curiosities creeping into their pack ripping adventures, I encourage them to check out the myriad of other Topps releases, many of which have been profiled on this website.

2018 Topps Allen and Ginter Hits / Topps
Putting the merits of the base set contents aside, one will find that each box offers the opportunity to score three hits, which come in the form of autographs, booklets, buybacks, relics, or rip cards. The box provided for this review offered up two framed mini cards, an autograph of Oakland Athletics slugger Khris Davis, and a wood bat mini of San Francisco Giants catcher Buster Posey. The third hit was a relic card of newly minted Los Angeles Dodger, Manny Machado.

2018 Topps Allen and Ginter Mini Cards / Topps
When it comes to inserts, here is where Allen and Ginter gets creative. The mini cards celebrate baseball superstitions, such as the “No Talking About a No-Hitter,” card pulled in this box, as well as a Crazy Horse Indigenous Heroes tribute card. The standard sized inserts show off the evolution of baseball equipment over time with the "Baseball Equipment of the Ages" subset, highlight the heavens with a “Magnificent Moons” series, and spotlight all-time leaders in their respective statistical categories through the "Fantasy Goldmine" cards. The entire release is designed with an artistic flair that should put to rest whatever qualms one has about the makeup of the base set.

2018 Topps Allen and Ginter Inserts / Topps
With a well-established legacy amongst collectors, Topps Allen and Ginter continues to drive forward the reach of card collecting through its intriguing design and subject selection. If you are on the fence about Allen and Ginter because of the non-sport cards within in the set, after seeing your favorite baseball players in the crisp 2018 Topps Allen and Ginter design, you will remember just why you proudly keep your baseball cards on display for all to admire.




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