Topps Baseball Set Reviews

1987-1999  1987  1988  1989  1990  1991  1992  1993  1994  1995  1996  1997  1998  1999  2000-2009  2000  2001  2002  2003  2004  2005  2006  2007  2008  2009  2010-2019  2010  2011  2012  2013  2014  2015  2016  2017  2018  2019

2000 Topps/Topps Traded & Rookies

Set Size: 479/135 (minus card #7 retired for Mickey Mantle)

Players With Dual Cards: Mike Lansing, Mike Lowell

Card #1: Mark McGwire

Subsets: Prospects, Draft Picks

The Best Cards: #367 Chris Widger, #400 Ken Griffey Jr.

Notable Uncorrected Error Cards: #-- 

My Thoughts On The Set: O--

Beginning with this set, Checklists disappeared from Topps for over a decade. They were obtainable in insert form, however.

2001 Topps/Topps Traded & Rookies

Set Size: 791/265 (minus card #7 retired for Mickey Mantle)

Players With Dual Cards: Brian Meadows (#316 and #486) Michael Tucker (#132 and #703)

Card #1: Cal Ripken, Jr.

Subsets: Highlights (5) Prospects (25) Draft Picks (25) League Leaders (8) Postseason Highlights (8) Golden Moments (20)

The Best Cards: #279 Alberto Castillo, #443 Jeromy Burnitz, #T99 Rookies Of The Year

Notable Uncorrected Error Cards: #39 Shigetoshi Hasegawa (misspelled "Hasagawa") #41 Adam Piatt (no birthdate) #63 Torii Hunter ("as" misspelled as "a") #339 Lou Piniella (misspelled "Pinella") #595 Dave Mlicki (Brian Moehler pictured) #728 Prospects (Peavy misspelled "Peavey")

My Thoughts On The Set: Out of the blue, Topps upped its checklist by 312 cards, presumably in acknowledgment of its 50th anniversary. In the preceding five sets, middle relievers and utility infielders were scarce, especially from bad teams, and even some deserving regulars and top prospects found themselves on the outside looking in. 2001 Topps emphatically ended the "Dark Era", though I'm not sure why the set wasn't just numbered to the familiar 792 rather than 791.

For the first time in 14 years, Topps featured a "Now With (New Team)" in the form of Scott Karl, the Angels pitcher depicted as a Rockie.

I had few complaints about this set, though as a Giants fan I was disappointed that Felix Rodriguez and Alan Embree weren't included.

Like Roger Clemens in 1999 Topps, Jose Canseco appears with two teams in the base set (Yankees in Series 1, Angels in Series 2).

For the second time in four sets, Michael Tucker received two cards with the same club (Cincinnati).

The League Leaders subset was a little different this year, and by a little, I mean a lot. Rather than cards listing the top 10 in a few categories, 2001 Topps depicted the overall leader in several categories, with NLers on one side of the card and AL counterparts on the other. This style lasted for one set.

The Traded & Rookies set continued to be rather heavy on rookies; still, several vets not found in the base set made appearances, such as Roberto Kelly. The set also supplied one of the priciest cards of my collecting era, the rookie combo of Albert Pujols and Ichiro Suzuki.

2002 Topps/Topps Traded & Rookies

Set Size: 719/275 (minus card #7 retired for Mickey Mantle)

Players With Dual Cards: None

Card #1: Pedro Martinez

Subsets: Highlights (5) League Leaders (12) Playoff Bound (8) Awards (24) United We Stand (7) Prospects (38) Draft Picks (11)

The Best Cards: #426 So Taguchi, #169 Jon Lieber, #565 Andres Galarraga

Notable Uncorrected Error Cards: #26 Eric Davis (60 SB in 2000 instead of 1) #144 Craig Counsell (wrong front photo) #160 Albert Pujols (wrong back photo) #242 Ray Durham (421 doubles in 2001 instead of 42) #291 Lloyd McClendon (misspelled "McLendon" on front) #299 Art Howe (calls Mark Mulder "Murk") #321 Napoleon Calzado (misspelled "Napolean") #470 Lance Berkman (370 BB in 1997) #T87 Cliff Floyd (backwards Boston logo)

My Thoughts On The Set: Like Jose Offerman, 2002 Topps was error-prone. There existed several uncorrected printing gaffes, including on Lance Berkman's common, and at least one massive spelling goof ("Murk Mulder" on Art Howe's common). Plus, Craig Counsell's front pic was actually teammate Greg Colbrunn.

The overall front design, IMHO, was plain and uninspired. The gold borders worked well; I'd like to see those again someday. But no more swirling banners.
On the other hand, I dug the reverses, except all the printing errors.

Multi-player Prospects cards were discontinued in 2002 Topps, replaced by 38 individual Prospects. (Rich Harden appears as James, his given first name. No connection to the NBA star.)

The "United We Stand" subset chronicles the return to action of many teams following the terrorist attacks upon New York City and Washington, D.C. in September 2001. (All MLB action was postponed for about a week.)

Tony Gwynn received a sunset card. Mark McGwire received a sunset card. Cal Ripken, Jr. did not receive a sunset card. This has bothered me for two decades and counting.

Despite finishing 2001 (and opening 2002) with the Reds, Joey Hamilton appears as a Blue Jay. Why Topps didn't print "Now With Reds" on the front is unknown.

Like with McGwire and Sammy Sosa in 1999 Topps, card #365 carries 73 variations of Barry Bonds' "Race To Seventy (Home Runs)". I bought the factory set, so I only own the variation representing homer #73.

2003 Topps/Topps Traded & Rookies

Set Size: 721/275 (minus card #7 retired for Mickey Mantle)

Players With Dual Cards: None

Card #1: Alex Rodriguez

Subsets: Highlights () League Leaders () Postseason Highlights () Award Winners () Prospects () Draft Picks ()

The Best Cards: #388 Mark Ellis, #216 Todd Hundley, #589 Fernando Tatis

Notable Uncorrected Error Cards: #236 Eric Gagne (zero annual games started) #409 Julio Franco (career stats all jacked up)

My Thoughts On The Set: O--

2004 Topps/Topps Traded & Rookies

Set Size: 733/220 (minus card #7 retired for Mickey Mantle)

Players With Dual Cards: None

Card #1: Jim Thome

Subsets: Highlights () Postseason Highlights () Future Stars () Prospects () Draft Picks () First Year ()

The Best Cards: #19 Aaron Rowand, #582 Scott Rolen, #181 Jason Michaels

Notable Uncorrected Error Cards: #-- 

My Thoughts On The Set: O--

2005 Topps/Topps Updates & Highlights

Set Size: 734/330 (minus card #7 retired for Mickey Mantle)

Players With Dual Cards: None

Card #1: Alex Rodriguez

Subsets: All-Stars, Record Breakers, Checklists

The Best Cards: #--

Notable Uncorrected Error Cards: #-- 

My Thoughts On The Set: O--

2006 Topps/Topps Updates & Highlights

Set Size: 660/330

Players With Dual Cards: None

Card #1: Alex Rodriguez

Subsets: All-Stars, Record Breakers, Checklists

The Best Cards: #--

Notable Uncorrected Error Cards: #-- 

My Thoughts On The Set: O--

2007 Topps/Topps Updates & Highlights

Set Size: 661/330

Players With Dual Cards: Gary Sheffield, Bengie Molina, Edgar Gonzalez

Card #1: John Lackey

Subsets: All-Stars, Record Breakers, Checklists

The Best Cards: #--

Notable Uncorrected Error Cards: #-- 

My Thoughts On The Set: O--

2008 Topps/Topps Updates & Highlights

Set Size: 660/330

Players With Dual Cards: Willy Aybar

Card #1: Alex Rodriguez

Subsets: All-Stars, Record Breakers, Checklists

The Best Cards: #--

Notable Uncorrected Error Cards: #-- 

My Thoughts On The Set: O--

2009 Topps/Topps Updates & Highlights

Set Size: 660/330

Players With Dual Cards: None

Card #1: Alex Rodriguez

Subsets: ----

The Best Cards: #--

Notable Uncorrected Error Cards: #-- 

My Thoughts On The Set: O--