Monday, January 1, 2018

2017 In Review - Calbee

2016 was an odd year for Calbee.  Instead of publishing their usual three sets, they published five sets - their traditional three sets plus a smaller "All Star" set in January and a "Samurai Japan" set in November.  The oddness continued in 2017 but in a different direction - instead of publishing more sets than expected, Calbee issued fewer.  Instead of publishing their usual three sets, they only published two plus a "Samurai Japan" set late in the year.

Series One was issued as usual in mid-March.  The base set had 99 cards - 72 player cards (6 per team), 23 "Title Holder" cards and four checklist cards (showing highlights from late in the 2016 season).  There were 30 insert cards - 24 "Star" cards and 6 "Legend" cards featuring players who had retired at the end of the 2016 season.  The "Lucky Card" box set (available as a mail-in redemption) was a 12 card set called "Clutch Hitters".

Series Two normally comes out in June but this past year it got delayed about two and a half months - there was a potato shortage in Japan due to typhoons damaging the crops in Hokkaido in 2016.  The set was finally released in early September - about a week or so before Series Three usually gets released.  Its base set had 88 cards - 72 player cards (6 per team again), 12 "Draft Pick" cards featuring the top draft pick for each team and four checklist cards (showing early season highlights).  There was the usual 24 card "Star" insert set and the "Lucky Card" redemption set was called "Opening Pitcher" and featured the Opening Day starters for each of the 12 teams.

I had had hopes that Calbee would still issue a Series Three set - just probably delayed until November.  Those hopes were dashed however when they announced that they'd be releasing a small "Samurai Japan" set in early December.  This was a 36 card set that featured 35 players who had played for Samurai Japan in either the friendlies against Mexico and The Netherlands in November of 2016 and in the World Baseball Classic last March.  I haven't done a complete check but I think the set has all the players who played for the team except Norichika Aoki who was in MLB.

There were 144 total "regular" player cards (12 per team) between the Series One and Two sets.  I don't think there are any players with more than one card so it appears that 144 players had "regular" cards.  Because there was no Series Three however, most of the players in the "Title Holder" subset did not end up having "regular" player cards - this includes Shohei Ohtani, Tetsuto Yamada, Yoshitomo Tsutsugoh, Tomoyuki Sugano, Hayato Sakamoto, Takehiro Norimoto, Dennis Sarfate, Yuki Yanagita and Brandon Laird.

1 comment:

Fuji said...

It's interesting how natural weather disasters can impact the hobby we love so much.