Saturday, May 27, 2017

Nostalgic Box Break: 1999 UD Choice (Part Two)

Previously on 'Jordan Comes Close To Bashing a Hobby Box with a Sledgehammer'...

Two days ago, I posted the first part of this UD Choice break. I absolutely loathe this set, with a burning passion, like no other baseball card set. There are three more pieces to this box, and we should get the next nine packs over with today.

Pack 10-
Hall of Famers: 2/10
Future Hall of Famers: 3/10

In terms of star power, this was a pretty nice pack. Both my StarQuests were MLB legends, in Mike Piazza and Chipper Jones. Neither were especially rare StarQuests though.

On the plus side, we get a rare 'David Ortiz in Minnesota' card, and a Cover Glory subset (that, again, WE CAN'T FRIGGIN' SEE) of Cal Ripken.

And we finish off the 'postable' portion of the pack with a card of Trevor Hoffman. I swear, if people continue to keep him out of the Hall of Fame for ridiculous statistical reasons, I'm gonna throw things.
Pack 11-
Steroids: 4/10
Future Hall of Famers: 1/10
Hall of Famers: 1/10
First of all, this Wally Joyner card isn't too bad, with a nice photo. Though the 'good' photography in this does sort of channel what Topps had been doing by that point.

More common StarQuests. Bonds' doesn't piss me off, but Johnson's....oh, boy. He's credited as a Seattle Mariner, he's pictured as a Houston Astro, and he'd already signed with Arizona by the product's release. So that is a TRIPLE-Screw-up. That is a new level of patheticness.

Vladdie and his surprisingly cool 90's Expos duds keep the momentum rolling along, along with the also-cool purple D-Backs uniforms.

McGwire gets a Cover Story. For once I'm glad I can't see this one. Troy Glaus gets a pseudo-rookie here, as well.

Pack 12-
Hall of Famers: 2/10
Borderline Future HOFers: 3/10
Future Hall of Famers: 1/10
Another particularly nice photo from this set, zoomed out just enough, but the border kind of kills it, to be honest. And possibly the fact that it's a photo of Moises Alou.

Vladdie again, this time with a slightly-rarer StarQuest. The problem with the StarQuest set, for me, is that the general-base set is so small that I keep getting the same ones in blue, and when I get one in green or's the same photo and everything. They get less and less exciting as the rip goes on, which is the opposite effect of the 1998 version.

Two Hall of Famers. One got in on the first ballot, rightfully. The other, Jeff Bagwell, is getting in on his SEVENTH YEAR on the ballot. I'd have thought he'd have been in a few years ago.

Rolen again, with an assist by a 2nd-year Todd Helton card, which is a nice touch.

And, as it was 1999 and he was still cool, a relatively nice shot of Alex Rodriguez.

Pack 13-
Non-dupes: 3/10
Hall of Famers: 1/10

Can't complain about a base card of Ken Griffey Jr., even in his last season before leaving the M's. Glaus' would be better if...I'm gonna stop saying it. I have the same complaint with every Cover Story card, and it's getting tiring for me AND for you.

As an added bonus, Boomer Wells, a year after throwing a no-hitter.

Pack 14-
Steroids: 2/10
Ton of Kerry Wood in this product. You pitch one amazing game, and everyone wants to make a card of you. Him and Strasburg should be buds.
...and Barry Bonds is also here. Yaaay.

Larry Walker's probably never gonna be a Hall of Famer, but he was a great player, and helped the Rockies elevate from 'sucky expansion team' status.
Jason Giambi's career lasted 5 years more than it honestly should have. I'll give him credit for trying.

Brad Radke pitched in one place for 12 seasons, and did a pretty nice job of it. Can't say much more than that.
My these photos are boring.

Pack 15-
Guys who are STILL PITCHING TODAY: 1/10
Hall of Famers: 1/10
Racists: 1/10

Two common StarQuests. Curt Schilling pissed away all of his credibility, so I don't really need to talk about him. I've already seen that Vlad in green. Sure does take the fun out of it.

CAL! Never not happy with pulling a Cal Ripken card. All class.
Bartolo Colon was still a pretty big deal in 1998, two years after his rookie season. If you think that's crazy, imagine if he'd be a big deal 20 years after his rookie season...

Another 'Heads Up' insert, this one of Aramis Ramirez.

Pack 16-
Hall of Famers: 1/10
Future Hall of Famers: 2/10
Steroids: 3/10
Greg Maddux gives us another pretty nice StarQuest common, along with Larry Walker.

In 1999 it was still a pretty big deal that Clemens was pitching for the Blue Jays, so imagine the division's surprise once he was traded to the Yankees, which would be not too long after this card was produced.
Two Yankees I feel better about- Jeter does manage to make this base card look awesome, while Carlos Beltran, while looking slightly odd in a Royals uniform, does still look great as a rookie.

Annnd two steroid-abusers. Sosa was still riding high from his 1998 season, while Drew was just heading up the ramp to momentary stardom.

Pack 17-
Fun fringe players: 3/10
On the plus side, this product did manage to throw in a nice Bobby Abreu in Philly card, as well as giving me another likable John Olerud issue.

Garret Anderson I always thought was overrated. Buhner had some good years in Seattle, and essentially bowed out with the decade.

Pack 18-
Hall of Famers: 2/10
Future Hall of Famers (I hope): 1/10
Steroids: 1/10
Oh, hey, what feels like the millionth Mark McGwire card this box!
Thankfully, here's a Frank Thomas, equal rarity, StarQuest to even things out.

By the time of this release, Will Clark was already a member of the Baltimore Orioles, and Randy Johnson was already suiting up for Arizona. Nevertheless...I do take in any 'Big Unit in Houston' cards I can get.

And we end this excruciating part of the box with a base card of the greatest DH of all time, Edgar Martinez.

I will probably get to Part 3 relatively soon...but I do need to come up for air a bit.

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