Wednesday, January 7, 2015

2014 In Review - Other Card Companies

By my count (looking at Jambalaya's page for the 2014 baseball card sets), there were 19 sets released in 2014 by manufacturers other than BBM and Calbee.  This is certainly the most in the past few years and I suspect it's the most in the 25 years or so that BBM has been doing cards.

Epoch released three box sets this year in conjunction with the Japan Baseball Promotion Association (aka the OB Club and the All Japan Baseball Foundation), a relationship that been going on since 2009.  The three sets were the Shigeo Nagashima Memorial Treasure set and the OB Club 20th Anniversary sets Volume One and Volume Two.  In addition, Epoch also released two box sets with historic themes that did not involve the JBPA - a set commemorating the 40th Anniversary of the Carp's first pennant and a set commemorating the 50th Anniversary of the start of the Giants V9 streak (as part of an overall celebration of the Giants 80th Anniversary).

Front Runner Trading Cards (aka Frontier International) stepped up their game quite a bit, going from seven sets in 2013 to eleven sets in 2014.  All eleven sets were box sets featuring a single team.  There were four "Rookie & Young Star" sets for the Lions, Carp, Buffaloes and Baystars and three "Signature Edition" sets for three of those teams - the Lions, Buffaloes and Baystars.  They also did two team sets (for the Carp and the Marines) that somehow tied in with Mizuno.  They did yet another box set for the Carp called "Season Summary" and also got into the "celebrate the 80th Anniversary of the Giants" act by putting out a "Stars & Legends" set that featured both active and OB Giants.

Sports Graphic Number put out two sets this season.  The first one was dedicated to Tomonori Maeda, the Carp star who retired at the end of the 2013 season.  The second one was a first for the company as it featured three different Swallows players - Tetsuto Yamada, Shingo Kawabata and Yuhei Takai.  Every other Sports Graphic Number set has only featured a single player.  Like the previous sets, both of these sets featured little text and included cards that went together to form a picture.

Rounding out the list of sets, the Eagles once again released a pack based team set.  I just noticed that the Jambalaya store is located in Fukushima prefecture in Tohoku, so that might be why they've been selling the Eagles team issued set the past two years.  Other teams may also be issuing sets.

The totals for the year were 70 sets issued - 48 by BBM, 3 by Calbee (I'm going to treat each Series as a separate set since they are sold that way) and 19 by others.  On a personal note, I think I have (or will have eventually) 35 of them.

1 comment:

Jason Presley said...

That's a lot of sets, and that doesn't even account for the gaming stuff from Konami, Bandai and Sega!