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OSGB2: Box 8: 2003 Fleer Rookies and Greats

Magnificence “Blue” Parallel Reggie Jackson 197/250 (Yankees – Chuck)
Magnificence “Blue” Parallel Vernon Wells 231/250 (Blue Jays – Captain Canuck)
Magnificence “Blue” Parallel Jeff Bagwell 042/250 (Astros – darkship)
Dynamic Debuts Dontrelle Willis (Marlins – WickedOrtega)
Dynamic Debuts Rich Harden (Athletics – Beardy)

The Naturals Frank Howard (Senators/Rangers – Play at the Plate)
The Naturals Al Kaline (Tigers – Night Owl)
The Naturals Albert Pujols (Cardinals – Dan)
The Naturals Reggie Jackson (Yankees – Chuck)

Looming Large Chien-Ming Wang 040/150 (Yankees – Chuck)
Looming Large Edwin Jackson 296/500 (Dodgers – Night Owl)
Fleer Showcase Update Edwin Jackson RC 240/750 (Dodgers – Night Owl)

Fleer Authentix Update Matt Kata RC 0031/1250 (Diamondbacks – Chris Mays)
Fleer Authentix Update Chien-Ming Wang RC 0215/1250 (Yankees – Chuck)
Fleer Authentix Update Edwin Jackson RC 0295/1250
Fleer Genuine Upside Matt Kata RC 0724/1000 (Diamondbacks – Chris Mays)
Fleer Genuine Upside Robby Hammock 0698/1000 (Diamondbacks – Chris Mays)
Flair Future Fame Brandon Webb RC 408/500 (Diamondbacks – Chris Mays)

Fleer Ultra Update Delmon Young RC 0843/1500 (Devil Rays – Chris Mays)
Fleer Ultra Update Mike Hessman RC 0852/1500 (Braves – Captain Canuck)
Fleer Ultra Update Chien-Ming Wang RC 0599/1500 (Yankees – Chuck)
Fleer Ultra Update Jeremy Bonderman RC 1155/1500 (Tigers – Night Owl)

Hot Prospects Update Future Swatch Edwin Jackson pants RC 244/250 (Dodgers – Night Owl)
Boyhood Idols Bucky Dent jersey 049/615 (Yankees – Chuck)
Through the Years Randy Johnson/Brandon Webb dual jersey 342/360 (Diamondbacks – Chris Mays)

Wow, Edwin Jackson and Chien-Ming Wang dominated box 8. For those counting, that makes 25 inserts (20 packs/box). Well guys, this finally concludes Old School Group Break 2. Thanks again to everyone who participated. I hope you guys enjoyed it. I’m hoping to get everything mailed out in the next few days. I know some of you want your base, but many others I have not heard from regarding those. With that said, if it’s ok with you guys, I’ll throw in some nice extras of the team I know you collect and keep the base of your secondary team (ex: I send Beardy extra Orioles cards from my tradebox instead of a bunch of A’s base), unless you’ve told me otherwise. I will be doing this a lot, especially for teams that didn’t pull as much as others. Anyway, thanks again guys!

OSGB2: Box 4: 2003 Donruss Elite

Travis Chapman Rookie 1662/1750 (Tigers – Night Owl)
Aspirations Miguel Tejada 39/96 (Athletics – Beardy)
Passing the Torch Stan Musial/Jim Edmonds 200/500 (Cardinals – Dan)
All-Time Career Best Andre Dawson (Cubs – Shoebox Legends)
All-Time Career Best Stan Musial (Cardinals – Dan)

Career Bests Roy Oswalt jersey 442/500 (Astros – darkship)
Throwback Threads Randy Johnson hat 072/250 (Mariners – Bud)

This marks the halfway point in our break. The last 4 boxes are loaded with stuff and some teams that haven’t hit much yet (if at all) are about to blow up. Trust me. More results coming Sunday night…

2003 Finest Baseball Review

The second box I opened on my birthday, this box of 2003 Topps Finest was originally videotaped, but due to the horrible overall quality (lots of lag, audio distortion), the video was never published. As you’ll see, it was a pretty darn good break.

Box Details: 6 packs of 5 cards each per mini box, 3 mini boxes per master box, $75

From:Dave and Adam’s Card World

Uncirculated Box Topper (numbered to 199, 1: box): Each master box is accompanied by a silver pack holding an uncirculated Gold X-Fractor. Numbered to just 199, these gold parallels mirror the entire set, autographed rookies included. It just so happens that my Gold X-Fractor was a signed rookie card of J.D. Durbin (030/199). Durbin was a prized possession of the Minnesota Twins’ Minor League organization, and even received their Pitcher of the Year Award in 2002. He is currently a free agent.

Base set:
The base set is comprised of 100 short set cards, followed by 10 short-printed, autographed rookies. As was the norm with that era of Finest, each base card has a unique color background, influenced by the depicted player’s team. My box yielded 85 out of 100 short set cards (85%) and no duplicates.

Refractors (1: mini box): One of the key differences between 2003 Finest and say, 2009 Finest lies in the refractors. 2003 Finest does not have the bevy of colorful refractors that collectors have become accustomed to in recent years (red, green blue, gold, black, etc.) Instead, only basic Refractor and X-Fractor parallels exist (box toppers aside). The basic Refractors are seeded at a rate of 1 per mini box (SP’s 1 in 34) while the X-Fractors are seeded at a rate of 1 in every 7 mini boxes (SP’s 1 in 68). I did not pull any X-Fractors in this box, but I did pull basic Refractors of Tim Hudson, Larry Walker, and Barry Zito. I’m sure I will be sending the Zito out to New Mexico sometime. As for the Walker, it came out of the pack with significant damage to its back (a giant scrape). Why did it have to happen to a Refractor??

Finest Relics (1: mini box): Inserted into each mini box is a game-used bat or uniform relic. Each relic is designated to a certain “group” based on rarity. The odds of finding a particular relic from each group are as follows:

Group A: 1:104 mini boxes
Group B: 1:32 mini boxes
Group C: 1:29 mini boxes
Group D: 1:42 mini boxes
Group E: 1:40 mini boxes
Group F: 1:23 mini boxes
Group G: 1:18 mini boxes
Group H: 1:24 mini boxes
Group I: 1:12 mini boxes
Group J: 1:22 mini boxes
Group K: 1:21 mini boxes

Group A: 1:28 mini boxes
Group B: 1:11 mini boxes
Group C: 1:11 mini boxes
Group D: 1:10 mini boxes
Group E: 1:19 mini boxes
Group F: 1:12 mini boxes
Group G: 1:34 mini boxes
Group H: 1:17 mini boxes

I pulled bat cards of Nomar Garciaparra (Group A) and Rickey Henderson (Group J) as well as a uniform card of Eric Chavez (Group B).

Team Topps Legends Autographs (10 cards, randomly inserted)
: And now, here are those Hall of Fame autographs I mentioned in my last post. 10 Team Topps Legends signed cards for this special set, and just like the relic cards, each autograph belongs to its own specific group. The complete checklist is below, pulls highlighted in bold.

Group A: 1:168 mini boxes
Brooks Robinson
Goose Gossage

Group B: 1:68 mini boxes
Al Kaline
Stan Musial

Group C: 1:32 mini boxes
Lou Brock
Luis Aparicio
Duke Snider

Group D: 1:23 mini boxes
Gaylord Perry
Paul Blair
Vernon Law

Overall, autographs (rookies, Finest Moments (link), and Team Topps Legends) fall at a rate of 2 per master box.

Final Thoughts/Grades:

Collation: A+

For the second straight break, the box delivered the inserts and “hits” perfectly, all without a single duplicate. Very nice.

Condition: B
Condition was the only issue I had in this box. In fact, if it weren’t for this category, this box would get straight A’s across the board. Only 2 cards from this box came out of the pack with noticeable damage, but considering that both of those were chase cards (Walker Refractor, Gossage autograph – look at the blemish on the front, towards the bottom), I had to drop this down a grade.

Pulls: A
I think it’s pretty obvious that I got lucky with this box. The 2 autographs I was supposed to pull were both Team Topps Legends (as opposed to failed prospects) and I even got a bonus autograph with the box topper! Not to mention that I also pulled the rarest bat relic available in Nomar…

Value: A
Regardless of where you purchase this box, you should be able to find it for less than $80. For that price, you should find a nice little box containing 5 hits (3 relics, 2 autos), 3 Refractors, a Gold X-Fractor, and possibly one more X-Fractor if you’re lucky. I’d say go for it.

Overall Grade: A