5 year anniversary! – 2001 Topps Traded & Rookies Insert sets

3 03 2015

Topps had one regular insert set in the Traded product in 2001.

the first “Power Booster” cards Topps made.  It was a partial parallel of the first 10 cards of the regular set – the “At the Break” subset.  This subset discussed an overview of the first half of the 1995 season for 10 players who had great 1994 seasons.  The insert cards were extra thick – packs that had a Power Booster had one less card in total.  The background was “power-boosted” which was similar to refractor technology, but more like atomic refractors where the background isn’t just enhanced, it’s broken up into a design.

At the Break Power Boosters (20 cards, 1:8)

This insert set was truly appropriate for Topps Traded.  Called “Who Would Have Thought”, it features past baseball stars who moved teams when you wouldn’t have expected it.

2001 Topps Traded Who Would Have Thought

Of course, there were also one parallel set with flagship Topps that you could get in packs – Topps Gold 50th Anniversary.  These were #’d to 2001, just like the regular set.  You could also get a variety of Chrome variations in the packs, but I view those as a different product.

2001 Topps Traded Gold

5 years ago today…

2 03 2015


5 years ago, I had my first post on this blog.  I was living in Columbus then, and I’ve since moved to New Jersey, to Wrigleyville in Chicago, and then to another area in Chicago.  A few months from now, I’ll be moving to suburbs.  My wife and I had our first kid, and the second one is due here in less than a month.  The point is – a lot of things have changed in my life, but I’ve usually found a way to keep this blog up, and I’ve had a lot of fun doing it!

I started this blog after reading a number of other blogs, and this guys’ is the main one I remember reading then that is still going as strong as it was then.  Regardless, it’s been a good run so far and I’m glad I’m back on track with the Lifetime Topps project.  I’m almost done with 2001 – which will be continued tomorrow.  And then I’ve got 2002 lined up.  Hopefully it won’t take me 5 more years to get the last 9 years of this project put together!

So thanks for reading, and here’s to another 5 years or so!

2001 Topps Traded & Rookies scans

28 02 2015

The 2001 Traded set was the second Topps Traded set sold exclusively in packs – and the first in 6 years.  It was also the largest Traded set to date, by far, at 265 cards.

Of course, the big dog in this set is the Albert Pujols rookie card.  I didn’t pull it in my box, so I’ve got to show a snagged picture of the ‘net.  I think I’ll end up buying this card on eBay at some point.

2001 Topps Traded Pujols

There are 14 different Hall of Famers in this set, but only with a regular card in the set.  Rickey Henderson signed as a free agent with San Diego in the 2001 offseason – his second stint with the Padres.  Additionally, there were 13 guys in the reprint portion of the set who have their plaques hung in Cooperstown (Henderson also has a card in that subset).  I’m still missing about 75 cards to this set – so I don’t have the Marichal, Winfield or Eckersley yet.

  • Rickey Henderson, Carlton Fisk, Juan Marichal, Dave Winfield, Reggie Jackson, Cal Ripken Jr., Ozzie Smith, Tom Seaver, Gary Carter, Greg Maddux, Dennis Eckersley, Joe Morgan, Roberto Alomar, Nolan Ryan

2001 Topps Traded HOFers

2001 Topps Traded HOFers_0001

This set is actually organized in a pattern – a novel idea for Topps!  The first 98 cards are “Traded Veterans” – players who switched teams in the 2001 offseason.  The Henderson card above is of course is from that portion of the set.  A number of these guys would have impact years for playoff contenders over the next few years, like the Diamondbacks or the 2001 & 2002 Giants.

2001 Topps Traded vets Dbacks Giants

2001 Topps Traded vets

There were also a few guys in this portion of the set who got their first call-up to the big leagues in 2001.

2001 Topps Traded young vets

Card #99 was a subset all by itself.  This card honored the Topps Rookie of the Year winners, Pujols and Ichiro.

2001 Topps Traded ROY Pujols Ichiro

The next portion of the set is shown in the HOF-ers section above.  This is the “Through the Years” reprint portion, which makes up cards #100-144.  Here are a few other notable Topps Traded reprint cards from this set.

2001 Topps Traded Through the Years

The next portion of the set are 6 manager cards.  I actually didn’t get any of these cards in my box, so I’ve got nothing to scan!  After the managers is the “Prospects” portion.  This is made up of minor league guys who wouldn’t be eligible to have a major league card in any Topps sets other than Bowman or Topps Traded.  A few pretty good future players here.  Some are still productive today.

2001 Topps Traded prospects

The last section is the rookie part of the set.  The Pujols rookie card is in this section, which lasts from cards #211-265.  Jose Reyes and Justin Morneau are the most notable two players, outside of Pujols, in this part of the set.

2001 Topps Traded rookies Morneau Reyes

There are a few other guys with good careers ahead of them.

2001 Topps Traded other rookies

2001 Topps Traded cards – Big Red Machine

27 02 2015

For the first time since 1993, Topps had a member of the Big Red Machine in its base set.  This came via the reprint portion of the Topps Traded set.  Joe Morgan was in the set with a reprint of his 1981 Topps Traded card (Giants).

2001 Topps Traded Joe Morgan reprint 81

Of course, Morgan also has a Topps Gold parallel card as well.

2001 Topps Traded ’90 Reds Cards

26 02 2015

There are two members of the ’90 Reds in 2001 Topps Traded – one player and the team’s manager.  The player is Eric Davis, who is in the traded part of the set after he signed with the San Francisco Giants in the 2001 offseason.  Davis actually played as a pinch-hitter in the game where Barry Bonds broke the single season HR record with #71.

Lou Piniella was also in the reprint portion of the set.  His card from the original Topps Traded set – 1974 Topps Traded – was reprinted.

2001 Traded – Eric Davis, Lou Piniella

2001 Topps Traded 90 Reds Davis Piniella

Each card has a gold parallel card.  Davis is also featured in the relic set with a bat card.

2001 Topps Traded relic Eric Davis

2001 Topps Traded wax box break

24 02 2015

2001 Topps Traded box

I bought my 2001 Topps Traded over 2 years ago, from Dave & Adam’s Card World.  I bought it in July 2012, and I was between posting about 1995 Topps and 1996 at that point.  So I knew it would be a little while – but probably not quite this long!

This box was not cheap to say the least.  It’s the second most expensive box I’ve purchased as part of the project.  The 1980 Topps box was the most expensive – and it was another level.  This one was $170 at the time.  I think I could get one for cheaper now (whereas the 1980 Topps boxes are actually 3-4x what I paid back in 2010).  The box is up there because of one thing – the Albert Pujols rookie card.  It’s the white whale in this product.  You could get the Topps rookie card of Pujols and/or a Topps Chrome card of Pujols.  Plus there is an opportunity for the Topps Gold parallel and the retrofractor.

It’s worth pointing out; you are not going to get the full set in this box.  First off, it’s a box with two products in it.  There is Topps Traded.  And also Topps Chrome Traded.  There are 2 Topps Chrome cards in every box, so out of the 240 cards in this box – only 192 are Topps flagship cards.

As expected – I got no doubles in this box, but unfortunately I didn’t get the coveted Pujols rookie card.  Or the Ichiro Traded Chrome card that only exists in Chrome Traded since he wasn’t allowed in Chrome Topps.  But I did get 6 Topps Gold cards – which are shown below.  I’m going to keep that Tom Seaver, but the rest are up for trade!  Interesting – I got two of the same Gold card!  They were back to back numbering, too – 348 and 349 out of 2001.

2001 Topps Traded Gold

I got 48 Chrome cards, which is what the odds say.  I got 2 Retrofractors, also what the odds say.  But none of them were Pujols!

2001 Topps Traded retrofractors

1 got one “buyback”, which was a Topps Traded card of Joel Davis.  Apparently it’s some pretty steep odds for me to have pulled it – but this card doesn’t do me any good.  It’s a Topps Traded card of a guy who went 8-14 in his career!

2001 Topps Traded 86 Traded Joel Davis

As you’re told, I got 1 relic in this box.  This was a rookie relic of Jason Young, a prospect for the Rockies who was drafted by the Rockies in 2000 out of Stanford.  He went 0-3 with a 9.71 ERA in his career – not too great!  But he didn’t have a card in the base Topps Traded set, so this relic was his first MLB card ever.  I’m not sure how many cards like this there were, so it’s kind of interesting.  This card is an MLB 2001 card.  But if you look at Beckett – his RC is considered to be 2002 Bowman.

2001 Topps Traded Rookie Relics Jason Young

Last is the 1 standard insert set.  It’s called “Who Would Have Thought”.  Now I think this insert set is a great idea, but it looks so much like the base set that you’d think it was a subset.  I’d have done something where the two pictures of each player was a version of their card the year before he got traded and the year after.  Just an idea on my part – but these are still cool cards.

2001 Topps Traded Who Would Have Thought

Stats for the box:

24 packs per box * 10 cards per pack (-1 for the relic) = 239 cards

48 Chrome

2 Chrome Retrofractors

178 of the 265 card series. (67.2% set completion)

6 Gold 50th Anniversary

1 Vintage Original

3 Who Would Have Thought

1 Rookie Relic (Jason Young)

2001 Topps Traded & Rookies Overview

22 02 2015

In 2001 the Topps Traded set became its own product.  It was officially named “Traded & Rookies”, and it came in packs instead of a factory set for only the second time (the other being 1995).  It’s really more like a series 3, not an update set.  At this point in the game, Topps had started putting guys in their new uniforms as early as series 2.  Because it’s not in the factory set any more, I’ll start covering the Traded (update) set with its own overview and then another post with scans from the set.

2001 Topps Traded pack Dunn Griffey

265 cards in the set – up from the 135 in the 2000 factory set.

  • Subsets: Rookie of the the Year (#99), Through the Years (#100-144), Managers (#145-150).  Through the years is part of the base set; it is basically 45 reprints of old Topps Traded cards.  The RoY subset has Pujols and Ichiro on the same card.
  • Set Design: The set design is the same as the base 2001 set.  The back of the cards have a “T” suffix.
  • Packs: Packs contained 10 cards, the same as series 1 and series 2.  There are 24 packs per box (12 less than s1/s2).  I think the MSRP was $3.00, way more than the flagship set; but it hasn’t been listed on the packs in quite a few years.  The packs had kind of an orange-gold tint to them.
  • Rookies: The base set had Ichiro – and the Traded set had Pujols.  There was some weirdness to the Ichiro & Pujols rookie cards this year.  Ichiro is in Topps flagship (series 2), but not Topps Chrome.  Pujols is in Topps Chrome, but not Topps flagship.  Except for Pujols, every other Topps Chrome card has an equivalent Topps card. In Topps Traded, the reverse is true.  Pujols has a Topps Traded card, which is his first Topps card and thus his rookie card.  Ichiro doesn’t have a single player Topps Traded card – but does have a Topps Chrome Traded card; I think Ichiro and Pujols were the only two times in any year that a Topps Chrome card has no equivalent Topps card.  Confusing?  Agreed.  Aside from that, Justin Morneau and Jose Reyes are big rookie card in this set, and Hank Blalock has one as well.
  • Hall of Fame: 14 in total.  There is only one Hall of Famer in the regular part of the set – that’s Rickey Henderson, who was in the set after signing with the Mariners in 2001.  The through the years subset has 13 additional Hall of Famers (and Rickey, too).  They are: Carlton Fisk, Juan Marichal, Dave Winfield, Reggie Jackson, Cal Ripken Jr., Ozzie Smith, Tom Seaver, Gary Carter, Greg Maddux, Dennis Eckersley, Joe Morgan, Roberto Alomar and Nolan Ryan.  Deion Sanders, a pro football HOF-er, is also in the set with his 1989 Topps Traded reprint.
  • Variations: No variatons.

2001 Topps Traded box

The update box features a picture of Ichiro following through, with some rays going outward in yellow, orange and red.  The Topps 50th logo is there, as well as an ad noting that there is “one relic card in every box”.

Parallel sets

There was 1 parallel set – Topps Gold, which Topps officially called 2001 Topps 50th Anniversary.  These cards were numbered out of 2001, just like series 1 and series 2.  These cards come 1:3, though I only got 6 in my box, which would be 1:4.

It’s also worth pointing out that this product came packages along with Topps Chrome Traded.  Every pack had 2 Topps Chrome cards.  I don’t really think of these as parallel cards – they are more like a separate product.  The Topps Chrome cards did have “retrofractors”, which were refractors with cardboard backs.

Insert sets

There is one insert set – it’s a 20-card set called “Who Would have thought”.  This almost looks like it could be a subset; it’s got the same forest green border.  It shows players who were traded or signed free agent contracts throughout their career.

  • Who Would Have Thought – 20 cards (1:8)

Autographs & Memorabilia

As the box tells you – there is one relic per pack.  But there are quite a few different types of autos and relics in this product.  The Rookie Relics and Traded Memorabilia have exactly the same design, so I’d hesitate to differentiate them other than the fact that the packs do so.

  • Team Topps Legends Autographs – 14 cards {out of 113 cards across all products} (1:361)
  • Golden Anniversary Autographs – 2 cards (1:626)
  • Traded Memorabilia – 33 cards (1:29)
  • Rookie Relics – 18 cards (1:91)
  • Dual Traded Memorabilia  – 4 cards (1:376)
  • Hall of Fame Bat Relic – 1 card (1:2,796)
  • Farewell Dual Relic – 1 card (1:4,693)


Every single Topps Traded card in history was inserted into the product; the odds were 1:35,981 according to packs.  I pulled one of these.  I don’t think the odds are possibly correct on the packs, however. That would be 1 in every 1,500 boxes.  Considering how many Topps Traded cards were in existence in 2001 – that just isn’t right.


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