Friday, September 4, 2009

BBM declares pennant races over?

There's still a couple weeks left in the season, but apparently BBM has already decided that the Fighters and Giants are the league champions this year. How else can you explain the fact that descriptions of two boxed sets, one for each team, appeared on BBM's website today?

Both sets are 43 card box sets. The Fighters set is titled "Fighters Energy". It contains 18 "regular" player cards, a three card "Hit Maker" subset, a six card "highlight scene" subset, a three card "fighting pitchers" subset, a six card "hopeful players" subset and two three card sequences (I think). The Giants set is titled "Exciting Road" and contains a similar collection of cards - 18 "regular" player cards, a nine card "uniform number" subset, a six card "highlight scene" subset, a three card "hopeful players" subset and a six card "swinging players" subset. Both sets also feature one insert/memorabilia/autograph card and will be in stores in early October, just in time for the Climax Series.

Before the leagues instituted the current playoff system, BBM typically produced a box set for each league champion when it became more or less obvious who it was going to be. They've experimented with a couple ideas for sets since the Climax Series began (2004's Pacific League Playoff set featuring all three playoff teams; the various small box sets for individual playoff teams since then) including not producing anything at all last year. Of course, it's possible that they might produce sets for the other teams in the playoffs this year once they've been determined.

BBM's website also listed a new box set dedicated to Masaichi Kaneda today. It's a 35 card set, with 34 "regular" cards plus one possible autograph/photo card (34 was Kaneda's number with the Swallows and the Giants - it's retired by Yomiuri).

I'm a bit confused by a couple of things. First, the website says the set was released at the end of June, but this is the first it's been mentioned on-line. (I suspect that that might be the real release date since the website actually has sample cards on it.) Secondly, the set is referred to as "BBM Legend Series 3". I'm not sure what sets were "BBM Legend Series 1" or "BBM Legend Series 2" or if there actually were sets called that.

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