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1998 Topps Gallery Baseball Review

gallery981I think it’s about time for another box review so here’s a recap of what I pulled from a box of 1998 Topps Gallery recently. Each box contains 24 packs of 6 cards each and can be had for about $40 or so. Here are the goods:

Base set: The base set is comprised of 150 cards, split into five subsets/variations: Portraits (18), Permanent Collection (50), Expressionists (23), Exhibitions (27) and Impressions (14). An example of each can be found in the scan. There are some really great photos in this set! Overall I pulled 132 base cards (88%) with 7 duplicates. If anyone has any of these laying around, let me know and I’ll hit you with my wantlist!

Players Private Issue (1:17 packs): Serially numbered to 250, the PPI parallel mirrors the entire set and are found approximately one per box. I pulled two from this box: Dean Palmer and Alan Benes. The Benes came from the pack with some damage to the bottom left side of the card.

NOTE: Every pack of ’98 Gallery came with a PPI Auction card. They looked like the real PPI parallels except they weren’t printed on cardboard nor did they have the canvas feel to them. Each auction card had a point total on the back (25-100). Using these points (I assume you needed zillions of them), one could bid on some original sports art.

Awards Gallery (1:24 packs): All three insert sets in this product are inserted at a rate of 1 in every 24 packs. This first set, Awards Gallery, highlights ten players who won some sort of major award or led the league in some major statistical category in 1997. I pulled a Scott Rolen, who was the NL ROY in ’97. If anyone cares, Griffey, Clemens, and Larry Walker are also dressed in tuxedos in this set.

Photo Gallery¬† (1:24 packs): Photo Gallery is a ten-card set that features some of the game’s best. You can probably figure out the checklist yourselves. Like the Awards Gallery card, this card has a foil finish to it. But it’s Bonds. So blah.

Gallery of Heroes (1:24 packs): If any one of you look at that Mike Piazza card and wonder where the sticker autograph is, I order you to never read this blog again. Gallery of Heroes, a die-cut stained glass insert, debuted in 1997 Topps Gallery. In 1998, the checklist expanded from the original ten to fifteen players and jumbo variations were included as a box topper. I pulled a regular version of Mike Piazza and a jumbo of Frank Thomas.

What WASN’T Pulled: The PPI cards aren’t the only parallels in this product. There is a Gallery Proof parallel which is limited to just 125. These cards are seeded 1 in every 34 packs on average. There are also printing plates to be found (1 in 537 packs). A black, yellow, cyan, and magenta plate could be found for the front and back of each card in the set. When was the last time they made plates for card backs?

Final Thoughts: This box was a blast to open. The inserts looked great and the base photos kept me entertained, whether it was Carlos Delgado screaming at his bat or Frank Thomas doing his Diana Ross impersonation. The boxes aren’t very expensive and should give you a near complete set. I’d definitely recommend this stuff.

As always, thanks for reading and good luck with your own breaks!