Sunday, January 4, 2015

Play at the Plate New Year Contest Question 7

I know it might be tough to limit yourself to three, but what are the top three things you would change about the hobby today if you had the power?


  1. 1. Seriously reduce the number of sticker autographs, or at least integrate them into the card better than just slapping them on.
    2. All framed relics in A&G. No more of the full-size relics, unless they are jumbo relics.
    3. Combine Topps flagship and Topps Opening Day. Take foil off of Topps flagship base cards. It's pointless. Make the flagship set base cards just like opening day cards. Keep the set size as flagship, reduce the number of inserts, and have fun inserts like those in Opening Day.

  2. More competition, Fewer parallels, and more Griffeys.

    I would also hire me as a consultant.

  3. 1. Less inserts. Let the base cards be worth striving for.
    2. Packs should contain no less than 10 cards. Buying a pack of cards that contains less than that seems ridiculous.
    3. Only grant companies that have permission from leagues to make cards. I don't like seeing uniforms with missing team logos on my cards..

  4. less parallels, better relic, less inserts

  5. Less parallels, go back to wax, more affordable.

  6. Less parallels (i notice a recurring theme!), no redemptions, mention with every relic from which game it is (that would be so awesome!)

  7. 1. Give Upper Deck (and Panini) their license back.
    2. Fewer parallels. Way fewer parallels.
    3. Number all the insert sets. No more alphabet soup.

  8. Less inserts
    Less sticker autos
    Licensing for all UD and Panini

  9. No sticker autos for living players.
    Licensing rights for non-Topps companies.
    More card shows!

  10. 1. Unique photos for all your sets or don't make the set.
    2. Make your flagship set out of real cardboard.
    3. Turn insert sets into subsets and dial it down on parallels.
    3 1/2. Cartoons on card backs always.

  11. 1. Less parallels.
    2. Give licenses to UD and Panini.

  12. 1. More competition, give licenses to UD and Panini in baseball.
    2. Better photography, Stadium Club was awesome, can we make something close to that the standard.
    3. Fewer relics and for those used show a pic of the uncut item on the back and notate the game it was used in.

  13. Lower prices for standard packs or add more cards.
    Spread the card love and lets see more players from more teams included
    Let other companies be licensed so we get some diversity and competition.

  14. 1. Fewer parallels in every single product issued.
    2. More equitable distribution among teams in every product.
    3. (TIE) More competition, but limit each license holder to a certain number of sets to release each year -- and each different insert counts as a set being released. So, if a company wants to issue a relics insert, an autograph insert, and an autographed relic insert, that's three sets right there.

  15. 1. MLB and the MLBPA should hand out another license to Panini or Upper Deck. Competition is a good thing.
    2. Topps produces WAY to many sets, especially on the high end front. How about another affordable set to pair with Opening Day?
    3. I read recently that to complete the rainbow in Bowman Draft and Prospects you were on the hook for 46 different versions of the same card. Too. Many. Parallels.

  16. 1. Eliminate the monopoly. Get Panini a license and maybe another company or two.
    2. More love to the middle relievers and bench players. I don't need 150 of Tulo and CarGo every year, give me a Tommy Kahnle or Charlie Culberson thrown in there as well.
    3. Stop trying to appeal only to people in my age range (30s and 40s). Without the next generation, this hobby is doomed. Create an extremely large cheap set (75 cents a pack at most) for the kids. 1986 Topps may not have any lasting monetary value, but it made me love cards.

  17. More licenses, a variety of players in different products inserts/relics/autographs (tired of having the same three D-Backs players with autographs in every Topps product every year), and just for fun - more parallels - remember, you don't have to collect them if you don't want to. .

  18. Better representation for all MLB teams in card sets. Do away with sticker autographs. Heck, do away with plain white/grey/black relics too. Always show us the item the relic came from. Mix things up more (like Pacific used to do). Don't be afraid to fail, be afraid to be stagnant. Reduce the number of mini inserts in Ginter so that I can complete the full set again. Get rid of non-framed relics in Ginter. Bring back more oddball relics in Ginter. Topps Chrome, Topps Opening Day, Topps Series 1, Topps Series 2, Topps Update: Pick three and get rid of the rest of those. Bowman? One set with guys none of us have ever heard of is enough, make Bowman Chrome an insert. Bring back stickers (not autographs, just regular old stickers) in packs. Make boxes affordable. Make a set where you are supposed to collect tons of versions of the same card NOT be a set that costs $70 per box of eight cards. Keep Stadium Club awesome. Make Topps Archives the set it should be. Make Gypsy Queen go away. Make something original.

    I think that's three ideas. I don't know really. It's the off season still for this math teacher and I don't feel like counting.

  19. 1. Find a way to end pack searchers.
    2. No monopolies. Give a few other companies a shot.
    3. I'd do a complete Mascots set.

  20. 1. Take away a bunch of the pointless laws and bars in sets go away. For example, the rule that you can't make a set entirely made up of retired players needs to go, because to have a set like Archives with 75% current players is a bit pathetic.
    2. More risks in the flagship sets. I want wackier photos and better photography for Topps flagship, rather than just the same zoomed in shots we've been getting>
    3. Give Panini logos. Or better yet, bring Upper Deck back and let them have logos.

  21. 1 - Licenses for every company
    2 - WAY less parallels
    3 - Bring down the price of cards, to make it affordable/appealing to kids

  22. 1. Make inserts meaningful. Topps' themes are lame. Where are the insert sets highlighting the best relievers, or home run leaders, etc? I love variety but I also enjo function.

    2. Bring back food issues. Topps can do this quite easily as can Panini, without logos of course. But I'm sure the MLBPA or MLBP wants their big cut too.

    3. Cut it out with the insane numbers of parallels, both for base sets and inserts. There shouldn't be 100 sets in a release! High-end products and Bowman are the biggest culprits though Topps flagship is really bad too with all the parallels.

  23. 1. Give pro league licenses to more than one company to enhance competition.

    2. Integrate sticker autographs into the cards better, so they are not just cards with a sticker slapped on there haphazardly. I don't think stickers are going away, but I have seen them handled well by putting them in a little window or placing them in a frame of some kind.

    3. Don't reuse photos. This is a big one. I hate seeing the same photo of a player used across three or four or five products. Some exceptions could be made for old-timers who only have a few photos available, but most players aren't going to have that problem.

  24. 1) Team-Specific Products. Maybe guarantee that the hits in a Hobby Box are for a specific team.

    2) More "combo" sets like Ginter which throw a little history or Americana into the mix.

    3) More fan interaction in making decisions for the set. Online voting and the like.

  25. 1. On-card autos, no stickers.
    2. Shorter wait time on redemptions.
    3. Cheaper/more affordable products...Topps Total, Bazooka, etc.

  26. More brands, more players in sets (relief pitchers, back up catchers), and less inserts in Topps.

  27. More competition with licenses, less parallels, more full sets with all players included

  28. 1. revamp "relic" cards
    2. On card autos
    3. less parallels

  29. 1. No more sticker autos. Pretty tired of 'Em.

    2. No exclusive license for Topps. They're getting pretty fat and lazy as King of the Mountain.

    3. Find ways to reduce the price of cards, in general. Sure, flagship is relatively cheap, but cool cards like Gypsy Queen are $100 a box. Ridiculous.

  30. No more exclusive licenses. Make them less expensive with a lower cap and a somewhat looser rules so sets are easier to make and less sets are necessary in order to make having a license worthwhile.

    All items for relics of current players should come directly from the teams at regulated, reasonable prices. You might not be ever be able to fully fix the integrity problems inherent to retired player relics, but you can take the notoriously shady middle man out of the equation for the current guys. Put the savings towards transparent online databases and more reputable sources of old timer gear.

    Better customer service. Always honor expired redemptions with *something*. Work to reduce redemptions. At least throw your underserved vocal minorities a bone now & then. Make damaged card returns easier. Be open to constructive criticism. Remember that the little things are often what make or break your customers' experiences, and make getting them right a point of emphasis going forward.

  31. Just like in the good ol' days, allow 3 manufacturers and only 3 products from each (as long as Upper Deck is one of them).

    Topps needs to stop making ridiculous and uninspired inserts.

    Do we really need so many sticker autos of the same players again and again and again ? (this is rhetorical)

  32. 1- No more sticker auto's
    2- Let others use the logos
    3- Make sure the card manufacturers are listening to customers as far as what we like and what we would like to see.

  33. 1. More competition with one or two additional licenses being issued to other companies.

    2. Topps expanding their flagship set to include more relievers and bench players.

    3. Do not reuse photos.

  34. 1. unique photos for sure
    2. put the name of the set on the back of each card so i know which set it came from. upper deck did this for the last few years of their license, and i so appreciated it.
    3. actually send out the cards associated with redemptions - i'm still waiting (since 11/2013) for my dave stewart card from 2013 triple threads.
    bonus directive. expand checklist in the flagship set to include middle relievers, rookies, and third string catchers.

  35. 1. Any company can have a license for any sport but limit the company to 5 brands or less and limit the parallels to 2 besides the base set.

    2. Make cards more affordable and create a program to reintroduce card collecting to kids.

    3. Limit multiple cards of the same player in a set, allowing more players to get a card. Especially football who has the deepest rosters but smaller sets. If you have to put 3 players on a card, so be it. Peyton Manning doesn't need 4 cards in a set when his linemen don't have any.

  36. Tough question for me to answer considering I haven't bought a pack of cards in over twenty years. So I guess listening to what I hear out there.
    1) make the cards more affordable
    2) less parallels
    3) on card autos

  37. here are my 3:
    1) No F-ing redemptions.
    2) No Sticker autographs.
    3) only produce if you have a license.

  38. 1. Bring back the horrible tasting gum that always ruined the first card

    2. Go back to inserting cards with cigarettes (morals be damned)

    3. A limit on the number of products/inserts a player can appear in would be nice

  39. Crap, I was too late. Out of spite, I'll say get rid of base cards; NOTHING BUT PARALLELS! Also, put GPS chips into cards so I can track their movement. Also, every card should glow in the dark.