After being down for the better part of a month, BBM's website is back on line. They've moved their list of new sets to a new page. They've added info for a couple of the sets I mentioned last month - the Tatsunari Hara box set and the Carp and Baystars team sets - but not for the Lions team set and the Ohtani/Fujinami box set. The Lions set is scheduled to be released this coming Friday so BBM better get moving.
BBM did add information for two more of the team sets - the Buffaloes and the Fighters. Both sets have base sets of 81 cards featuring around 70 cards for the players and manager and several subsets. Both sets have four insert sets - the Fighters have 27 cards over the four sets while the Buffaloes have 18. Both sets have the usual collection of autograph cards available. I'm amused that the Fighters set has an 11 card subset featuring the players in street clothes - I guess BBM felt threatened by the AI set that came out recently. Both sets will be out in mid-June.
Epoch has also recently announced a couple new products. The latest of the team based "Stars & Rookies" sets is for the Buffaloes and will be released on June 25. It's pretty much the same idea as the Lions and Baystars sets Epoch has released earlier this season - each box (that retails for 12,960 yen or roughly $118) contains two mini-boxes containing 6 cards each - one or two will be autographed cards and the others will all be base set cards. I think it breaks down to 9 base set cards and three autograph cards per box. There are apparently some "hot boxes" that will contain four autograph cards. There are 27 cards in the base set and a boatload of possible autograph cards.
The other Epoch set is their latest ultra high end set done in conjunction with the OB Club (aka the Japan Baseball Promotion Association). The theme of this one appears to be "League Leaders". Once again, it's a very expensive box (16,200 yen or around $147) for a one pack box containing two base set cards, one insert/parallel card and two autograph cards. There are 27 players featured in the set - each player has a base set card, two different insert/parallel cards, two different autograph cards and a autographed booklet card available. The set will be out on July 9.
There's something on Jambalaya's upcoming release schedule that is intriguingly called "Kabaya Central League Baseball gum". I finally did some Googling of the Hiragana text for it (カバヤ セントラルリーグベースボールガム) and discovered that this is a Epoch set being packaged with banana flavored gum from Kabaya. There's 36 cards in the set (six for each of the six Central League teams). The set is being sold in boxes of 20 1 card packs. The boxes have an MSRP of 2160 yen (about $19.60). I'm including this link to Amazon Japan's listing of the set so that you can see all the cards - the boxes are not eligible to be shipped outside of Japan though.