1998 Topps Gold Label Baseball 2 RETAIL Boxes Review

It’s been a few days, but I’m back with more old box breaks! Today, I will review a couple of 1998 Topps Gold Label Retail boxes I busted a couple months ago. Now rather than describe the details of each individual box, I will just describe what I got from both. Also, it should be noted that the odds I will be stating today reflect only the retail version of these boxes, and not the hobby, which has slightly more generous odds. Retail boxes of this product contain 24 3-card packs while hobby boxes contain 24 5-card packs. I couldn’t really find any hobby boxes so I decided to go with 2 retail boxes. Either way, this product is a very fun break. Here’s what I pulled:

Base cards: The base set is comprised of 100 different cards, each very colorful and printed on a thick stock. Out of these 2 boxes, I received 95 out of the 100 cards, with 20 duplicates and 2 triples. I’d like to knock this set out so if you have any of these cards, PLMK: 29, 33, 52, 66, 67 This set is broken up into 3 levels, known as Classes. The first level, Class 1, is the most common and is the class I was referring to in the previous couple sentences. These cards feature a gold font on the front and depict the player in a fielding position. The second level, Class 2, are seeded 1 in 4 packs. These cards feature a silver font on the front and depict the player in a baserunning position. The last level, Class 3, are seeded 1 in 8 packs. These cards feature a gold, sparkling font on the front and depict the player hitting. All of what I just said applies only to position players, however. For pitchers, Class 1 shows the player in the follow-through after a pitch. Class 2 shows them in a set position before a pitch. Lastly, Class 3 features the player in the middle of their delivery. The fonts on these cards are consistent with those cards of the hitters.

Classes: I received 11 Class 2 cards, including Tony Gwynn, Rafael Palmeiro, and Travis Lee. I did a little better with Class 3, receiving 6 players who were all at least somewhat prominent at some point in time (sorry Quinton McCracken). They are as follows: Roger Clemens, Ivan Rodriguez, Craig Biggio, Albert Belle, Jose Cruz, Jr., and Moises Alou.

Label Parallels: Now if all that above doesn’t confuse you enough, there are 2 different label parallels to each class. There’s a Black Label (which are uncommon) and a Red Label (very rare). I received 4 Class 1 Black Label parallels. These were seeded 1:12 packs. My players were Jay Buhner, Jason Giambi, Tony Clark, and Ray Lankford. I also received 2 Class 2 Black Label parallels. These were seeded only 1:24 packs. My players this time were Jim Edmonds and Roberto Alomar (who isn’t spitting in anyone’s face BTW). I did not receive any Class 3 Black Labels or Red Labels. I should mention that all the Red Labels are serially numbered: Class 1 (to 100), Class 2 (to 50) and Class 3 (to 25). On top of that, every label and every class (and combination thereof) has a serially numbered 1/1 parallel! That makes 9 special 1/1 cards for every player in the set! Does your head hurt yet? 😛

’98 Home Run Race: The final insert I have to talk about is the ’98 Home Run Race set. There were only 4 players in this set: Roger Maris, Mark McGwire, Sammy Sosa, and Ken Griffey, Jr. These were found about 1 per box on average. Another beautiful set, these feature a black-and-white closeup of Roger Maris in the background. They also come in Black Label and Red Label parallels. The Black Label parallel falls in every few boxes (not sure about the actual retail ratio, but it’s 1:48 for hobby) while the Red Label parallel is limited to just 61 and is just about impossible to find. I pulled both a regular gold AND a black parallel of Ken Griffey, Jr.

All in all, this was another really fun break. You should be able to find retail boxes for under $40 online. As for hobby, I’m not totally sure to be honest. Still, if you want to build an AWESOME-looking set, you need look no further than Gold Label. If you do decide to give this product a try, and you’re not quite sure what you just pulled (which could easily happen), this is your reference page. 🙂

As always, thanks for the read and good luck with your boxes!
-John

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Posted on April 17, 2008, in Box Breaks and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 5 Comments.

  1. Any chance that Tony Clark is available?

  2. Sorry Tim, but that’s long gone. I traded all the Black Label parallels I got from this break.

  3. John,
    Thanks for the info. I have had a Ken Griffey Junior Red label home run race for about 10 years when the set first came out. There is no serial number on the back, whereas the regular red labels are labled to 100, like you mentioned. Ive always wanted to know how many of them they actually made. Thanks for the 61, that makes sense.
    Glad you enjoyed opening your box.
    Jake

  4. I have a Sammy Sosa Topps Gold Label class 3 98′ Home Run Race card, and I have no clue what it’s worth, could you help out a bit and tell me.

  1. Pingback: Collection Highlight: 1998 Topps Gold Label Class 2 Greg Vaughn | The Electric Friar

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