*My brother-in-law has always worked in academia since he got his doctorate so when I was recently asking my sister where he had done his internship in Tokyo and she said "Ricoh", I kept thinking she meant "Rikkio", one of the Tokyo Big Six universities. It took a little bit before it got through my head she meant the printer company.
This was going through my head this past summer when BBM released their annual team set for the Giants. I don't usually get team sets and I really don't like the Giants that much but this year's set is really attractive, so after much reflection on it (and deciding how to break the news to my daughter*), I decided to pick up the set.
*She really doesn't care all that much
Ryan's excellent post about the set kind of makes what I'm about to say redundant, but I'm going to go ahead anyway. The base set is 108 cards, a little larger than the 90-99 cards that the other 11 team sets contain. There are 80 "regular" player cards - this includes manager Tatsunori Hara, 64 players on the Giants official roster (that can be up to 70 players) and 14 ikusei players (the Giants have the second largest roster of ikusei players in NPB after the Hawks). I'm pretty sure that this is everyone on the Giants roster this past year with the exception of Hector Mendoza, who didn't sign with the Giants until after this set went to press. So for once here's a BBM set that I can't complain that they left someone out...
Anyway, the base cards in this set are really striking. There are black bars at the top and bottom of the card that frame the photo well without being obtrusive. Probably half the cards use a horizontal format which works really well. The photos themselves for the most part are quite good. Here's some examples:
I will point out that a couple of the cards of ikusei guys used head shots instead of action shots and this format didn't quite work for those:
Mercifully, BBM limited the mascots to a single card in the set, which also functions as the checklist: