Saturday, January 9, 2016

Nostalgic Box Break: 1994 Upper Deck Collector's Choice Series One (Part 1)

This guy just got the go-ahead for Cooperstown. So I say we should bust his box. 1994 Collector's Choice Series One. The first one. Featuring The Kid.

This is a generally nice product, as most of the 90's Collector's Choice sets (save for the '99 lobotomized issue '1999 UD Choice') give you great photography and a ton of cards. So, this being their first attempt at this kind of set, and their attempt at taking down Stadium Club in the 'cool set that kids can collect' division, hopefully they did some things right.

This box has 36 packs, and 12 cards per pack. I'll be doing this 12 packs at a time. Hopefully that won't seriously injure me.

Pack 1- Already you can see that the superb 90's collation has reared its ugly head, as the top corner has doubles in the same pack.
Base cards have a border. Rookies are full bleed. Silver sigs abound. It's got most of the CC staples already, which is nice.

 Rookies here aren't much, but get the full-bleed treatment.

 The photography, as per usual with CC, is spot notch, featuring killed throwbacks (Cooke) and zoomed in action shots (Jackson).

 Plus, here you get really cool semi-posed shots, like this one of Yasiel Puig's role-model (presumably) Raul Mondesi.
 And really relaxed shots, like this one of Delino De Shields, whose kid will likely be starting for Arlington next year.

 Barry Larkin's shot is the best in the pack. Hell of a double play shot, and as a bonus, those white-heavy 90's Reds uniforms are cool.

 Pack 2- Lots of sitting shots, but also, lots of shots of people doing things while running.

 The Draft Class gets a different treatment than the rookies, but Brian Anderson didn't especially do as well as the guy on the bottom, though I do think it's funny that Delgado is credited as a catcher.

 Crouching Pitcher, Hidden Hatcher

 Sideways shots of two guys who were HUGE in the mid-90's. Valentin's shot is very cool and infieldy, but I love Grace's, because it's zoomed back far enough to get enough emphasis on everything.

 Pack 3- This set definitely used the sideways shot to its advantage.

 Great card. Roger McDowell taking some pictures with a disposable camera. Very, very 90's.

 A smooth sliding shot of Jose Vizcaino, and a very cool, fear-inducing Mark Langston shot. One of the nastiest pitchers of the 1990's.

 A very slim, by comparison, looking Ken Caminiti, and a very pensive looking Don Slaught. Ton of great horizontal shots in this set.

 This one's my favorite. From this angle this play by Jeff Blauser looks awesome, with enough of him off the ground to look dangerous.

 Brad Ausmus got 0 votes on the HOF ballot. Rob Dibble somehow got a card in 2015 Topps Archives. A short print, even.

 Two rookies from 1994. Salomon Torres was the highly-touted 'this guy's going to be amazing' rookie. Manny, of course, ended up surpassing him.

 Pack 4- My favorite card of this set is in this pack.
 I have no clue who Wayne Gomes is, but this shot of him against the fence is a pretty awesome one. Plus, this Brett Gates sideways DP shot has a Reggie Jackson retired number in the background.

 Greg Olson riding a tractor. You cannot get better than that.
Lance Johnson's ultra-cool sliding shot comes close.

 This Darren Lewis shot, just avoiding the tag, isn't too bad either.

 Ruben Sierra, who missed out on the crouching action from a few packs ago, and Jeffrey Hammonds, in a cool posed shot.

 None of these guys really did anything, but I love both these shots. Brunson's has some Detroit Tigers history in the background, while Becker's just looks really cool.

 And, as an added bonus, here's Dante "Bichette Happens" Bichette.
 I didn't have a group shot for Pack 5, but here's a sweet throwback of Scott Lydy to start it off.

 Meanwhile, Don Mattingly has a really nice wide shot of him having a hit. Just very leveled, too.

 And another awesome throwback of Manny Lee.

 Pack 6- A lot more varied photography, though there's still an emphasis on lawn shots.

 Four killer horizontal shots. All of Pitchers.

 I love this shot of Wilson Alvarez signing for a young fan. Really cool.

 Jeff King's running shot is the best one here. I love this set because most of the photos have full-body shots. And it really helps a lot of the time, especially here, because the field lining is almost perfectly in like with King's leg.
 Pack 7- There's our poster boy.

 That is an example of Upper Deck knowing they've got a guy on the packs, and wanting to make him look as awesome as possible. This is one of the coolest Griffey cards ever, and I'm certain a lot of people would share that.
 Additionally, this shot of Scott Servais, still rocking the late 80's Astros uniforms, is pretty cool too.

 Ricky Bones gets interviewed, one of the BILLION awesome Ricky Bones cards from this period.

 And here's Nigel Wilson, the #1 expansion draft pick from the Marlins. Not the most well known guy.

Pack 8- A lot of ho-hum shots here, but they can't all be winners.

 Two awesome Orioles shots. McLemore is great because he's a passionate runner, you can see it on his face. Moyer's is awesome too, because you get all of him in there.

 Two guys I've never heard of, with some pretty cool photos.

 Pack #9- There's a Hall of Famer in here, and also a Future Hall of Famer in here.

 Shawn Green's rookie card. Hm.
Also Woody Williams, 3rd-guy-in-the-rotation extraordinaire.

 A very cool, backwards-hat shot of Scott Erickson.

 And an even cooler, Blue Jays shot of Rickey Henderson, who nabbed his second ring with the Jays.

 Two guys I collect wholeheartedly. Orel's a hometown hero. Chipper's everybody's hero.

 And here's a silver sig of Prince's dad.

 Pack #10- A few members of the 2016 HOF ballot are here. an amazing, semi-posed shot of Larry Walker. Well done.

 Plus, here's a really fun shot of Fred McGriff talking to Mark Lemke.

 Also on the ballot, Gary Sheffield telling the manager how many finger he has left.

 Pack 11- An entire row of horizontals. Gotta love '94 Collector's Choice.

 Best one here is probably Phil Hiatt's but Tettleton's is pretty cool too.

 The checklists this year were propaganda-poster-esque painted shots of some of the game's stars, which also landed on top of the packs. Kirby is our first one, and, like the others, this one looks pretty great.

 Pack 12- All the vertical shots kind of look the same.

 Magadan swings. Mark Whiten waits for the call.

 Great static shot of Terry Steinbach in full catcher's gear.

And finally, here's a card of one of your new hall of famers being crowned Rookie of the Year. That is a nice touch. This post started with Griffey and ended with Piazza.

I'll get Part 2 up sometime relatively soon. More ultra-cool checklists await us.

1 comment:

  1. I ripped a jumbo box of this a few weeks back. I need to collate them and see what cards I am missing.