2003 Topps Traded & Rookies Overview

22 09 2015

The 2003 Topps Traded & Rookies was again issued in pack form.  This was the fourth time it came in packs instead of a factory set (1995, 2001 & 2002 being the other years).  By 2003 it had really become more of a series 3, focused on rookies and players traded in the middle of the season.  Topps gets so many players who were off-season movers into series 2 in their new uniforms.  The 2003 Update packs again included Topps Traded Chrome.

2003 Topps Traded Rickey and pack

275 cards in the set – same as the year before.

  • Subsets:  Managers (#116-120), Prospects (#121-165).  The first 120 cards are “traded” players and managers.  Thankfully for my project, Topps did not short print them in 2003 as they had done the year before.  Cards numbered 166 through the last card, #275, are First Year players.
  • Set Design:  The set design is the same as the base 2003 set.  The back of the cards have a “T” suffix.
  • Packs:  Hobby and retail packs have 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; but it isn’t listed on the packs.  There were also HTA Jumbo packs with 35 cards per pack (10 packs per box).  The packs are white with a baseball background.  The words Topps logo is large and red at the top, followed just below by wording for “Traded and Rookies 2003 Major League Baseball Cards”. Of course they remind you that, yes, Topps Chrome is included.
  • Rookies:  The most notable rookie card is Robinson Cano, but Hanley Ramirez, Shane Victorino, Brian McCann and Chien-Ming Wang all have rookie cards in this set.
  • Hall of Fame:  2.  Roberto Alomar and Rickey Henderson are the only Hall of Famers in the set as of now.  Alomar is featured with the White Sox, Henderson is shown with the Dodgers.
  • Variations:  No variations.

2003 Topps Traded HTA box

The white box features pictures of Jeff Kent, Pudge Rodriguez and Jim Thome in their new uniforms.  The Topps logo is prominently displayed at the top in Red, with the wording “Traded and Rookies 2003 Major League Baseball Cards” below.  There is advertising for the 2 Topps Chrome cards per pack and the 1 autograph or relic per box.

Parallel sets

There was 1 parallel set – Topps Gold, which came back for good in 2001.  These cards were numbered out of 2003, coming 1:2 packs.

As I mentioned, this product came packaged 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 had refractor versions as well, and each HTA Jumbo box came with an X-Fractor uncirculated numbered out of 25.

Insert sets

There are no insert sets aside from the parallels – fairly unusual for Topps at this point in time.

Autographs & Memorabilia

As the box tells you – there is one relic or autograph in each box.  But there are a few options across this product.  The Hall of Fame relics are really nice cards and feature Eddie Murray (bat) and Gary Carter (jersey).

  • Signature Moves Autographs – 20 cards (1:114-1:280)
  • Transactions Relics – 25 cards (1:78-1:168)
  • Transactions Dual Relic – 3 cards (1:421)
  • Future Phenoms Relics – 15 cards (1:101-1:2,330)
  • Hall of Fame Relic – 2 cards (1:1,009)
  • Hall of Fame Dual Relic – 1 cards (1:2,015)

And of course, there were the two cross-product autograph inserted:

  • Team Topps Legends Autographs – various cards {out of 113 cards across 2001/2002 Topps products} (1:180)
  • Topps Blue Chips Autogrpahs – various cards {out of 113 cards across 2001/2002 Topps products} (1:631)
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