Sunday, January 12, 2020

The New Frankenset: Page #2

The best thing about starting a brand-new, 74-page frankenset is the opportunity to showcase inserts as well as base cards from sets with smaller checklists, something that, for no reason other than what I have available in my collection, was absent from the final pages of frankenset #1.

If you saw the first page of frankenset #2, you know it was chock-full of inserts, oddballs, a mini, and, overall, was incredibly diverse in its range of various cards.

I really do wish that this wide variety could carry over into the 400s, 500s, and 600s of each frankenset checklist, but the fact is that after card #350 or so, there isn't a whole lot available aside from standard Donruss, Fleer, Topps, and Upper Deck.

Because of this decrease in variety, if you appreciate having a page of 9 totally different cards as much as I do, appreciate the first half of the frankenset as much as possible. Hopefully, I can captivate the interest of my audience just as the original pages did when I started the first series back in March of 2018.

The first 10 pages, in particular, feature an especially diverse collection of cards, thanks in large part to all the insert sets. Page #2 (cards #10-18) is no exception, so after a strong showing the first time around, let's get started and see what the 2nd page has in store.

#10 1997 Pinnacle Mint Collection Andruw Jones
I consider myself lucky to have found not 1 but 2 of these 1997 Pinnacle Mint Collection cards in the dime bins throughout my trips to the card show, the other one being Mo Vaughn. Though I originally purchased the card above thinking it was Chipper, not Andruw Jones, it ended up being a perfect fit for my frankenset.

Though some card companies have made their own coin sets, I can't recall any example other than '97 Pinnacle Mint Collection of coins being an actual part of the card itself. Unfortunately, this release was, as far as I know, the only in the brand's history.

#11 2014 Panini Donruss Hall Worthy Adrian Beltre
As I mentioned early, the further into the frankenset we get, the less diverse each page will become as a result of the smaller set checklists compared to the massive ones like, for instance, Topps Flagship.

Part of what makes the beginning of this frankenset so special is the fact that, in the case of page #2, brands like Panini and Pinnacle are granted slots in the checklist.

The Beltre card above is also a dime box pickup, but instead of starting a player collection of the future Hall of Famer, I opted to put this insert into my frankenset.

#12 2013 Panini Cooperstown Home Run Baker
From potential a Hall of Famer to someone who already has his own plaque in Cooperstown, Panini is literally covering all bases with their 2 cards featured on page #2. The 12th card in this frankenset is from Panini Cooperstown, a set that, as you can tell by the name, is reserved only for HOFers.

I must say that I prefer this design to the previous year's Cooperstown set, and I applaud Panini for featuring players who, despite having achieved Baseball's highest honor, remain unrecognized today.

#13 2004 Fleer Greats of the Game Mel Ott
Speaking of underappreciated Hall of Famers, look no further than Mel Ott, a member of the 500-home run club who rarely gets brought up when discussing Baseball legends. Thankfully, Allen & Ginter gave him the respect he deserves and featured Ott in their Ginter Greats set in 2019.

A career .304 hitter with 2,876 hits and 1,860 RBI, Ott never took home MVP honors across his 22-year career (which was more like 21 considering he only had 4 at-bats in '47 before retiring). During 9 of those seasons, he eclipsed the 100-RBI mark.

#14 2016 Topps Chasing 3,000 Ichiro
It would've been something for Topps to put out a near-3,000 card set, 1 card for each of Ichiro's hits, to commemorate his journey to the 3,000-hit mark, similar to what Upper Deck Documentary did for each MLB game a little over a decade ago.

Understandably so, however, Topps did not want to channel the 2000s where sets like Total and Moments & Milestones flooded the market. Instead, they went with quality over quantity and produced a smaller set, acknowledging his most memorable moments.

#15 2015 Topps Stadium Club Adrian Beltre
Because the original frankenset, towards the end of it anyway, would feature 2 cards from the exact same set on 1 page, I don't feel too bad about including 2 Adrian Beltre cards at slots #11 and #15 respectively. If nothing else, the sets are drastically different.

Back in 2015, Stadium Club, having just been revived the year prior, was all the rage in card collecting because of its inventiveness and Topps' world-class photography. Both of these factors are still present, but I'd be lying if I said the set still does for me what it did 4 years ago.

#16 1993 Continental Baking Hostess Cecil Fielder
As much as I love each and every card that I select to be featured in my frankenset, I wish I had held off on the Cecil Fielder card above and, instead, saved it for the Fielder player collection.

After all, there are literally hundreds of options for card #16 at my disposal that I could've chosen over Fielder since it's not every day that I have the opportunity to add to this particular player collection of mine.

#17 2014 Topps Breakout Moments Jeff Bagwell
Topps has produced so many insert sets over the 2010s with designs and/or concepts similar to the one above that, if I'm being honest, most of them just blend together.

If I wanted to, I could probably list 5 other inserts that are a little too similar to "Breakout Moments" for my taste, but at least the uniform is interesting, and the card goes with the wide variety that I've tried to establish across this page.

#18 1970 Topps Carlos May
The first card of the entire frankenset dated before the 1990s, this 1970 Topps Carlos May card provides a nice contrast to the ultra-modern theme that, for better or worse, has engulfed the first couple of pages.

It's nice to return to something simple yet stunning; a picturesque powder blue jersey paired with the classic silver borders of the 1970 Topps Flagship set. As much as I've grown to love modern cards, the fact is that you can't beat the originals.


  1. I picked up a set of the Pinnacle Mint coins and cards a few years ago... but it was the hockey version. I really, really, really want to add the baseball set to my collection.

  2. It's a Beltre hot page! LOL
    The Hostess Cecil Fielder makes the page for me. Love the variety!

  3. That's a lot of HOF talent on that page!

    I haven't seen that Pinnacle Mint set before. The only other cards I can think of with coins are the ones where they take an existing coin and put it in the card as a sort-of relic. Although those Baseball Treasure coins come in what sort of functions as a card. That Jones is really nice, so I think it's my favorite of the page, but the 1970 May is great too.