Saturday, October 13, 2018

2018 Calbee Series Three

Calbee's Series Three set got released a few weeks back.  This is basically the third part of Calbee's flagship set for the year - the first two parts were Series One which came out March and Series Two which came out in June.  As I've mentioned before, last season Calbee was unable to produce a Series Three set due to a potato shortage so this is the first Series Three set since 2016.

Like its two predecessors this year, Series Three has a base set of 88 cards.  There's 72 player cards (split evenly between the 12 teams so there's six cards per team), 12 "Exciting Scene" subset cards and four checklist cards.  The player cards are numbered in continuation of the other two sets - Series Two ended with card #144 so Series Three is numbered 145 to 216.

I can't say that there's a great selection of players in the set.  The biggest names are Seiya Suzuki, Ryosuke Kikuchi, Nobuhiro Matsuda, Takeya Nakamura, Yusei Kikuchi, Koji Uehara, Wladimir Balentien, Masataka Yoshida and Sho Nakata.  There's about 24 players in the set (a third of the players) who appeared in Series One or Two including almost everyone I listed just now - only Yusei Kikuchi and Koji Uehara from that group are unique to this set.  There are three players in the set who didn't make it into BBM's flagship sets - Kazuki Tanaka of the Eagles, Toru Murata of the Fighters and Kazuki Mishima of the Baystars.  One of the gripes I've had about Calbee's sets lately (as well as BBM's) has been the monotony of the poses on the photos - lots of batters batting and pitchers pitching.  This set has a little better selection - there's some runners running and catcher catching - but it's still kind of monotonous.  I was also a little disappointed that there were no horizontally formatted cards.  Here's some examples:

#161 (Kazuki Tanaka)

#190 (Ryutaro Umeno)

#185 (Seiya Suzuki)

#208 (Zolio Almonte)

#146 (Nobuhiro Matsuda)

#180 (Mike Bolsinger)
The 12 card "Exciting Scene" subset features an "exciting scene" for each of the 12 NPB teams.  This includes Chihiro Kaneko of the Buffaloes getting his 1500th strikeout, Takehiro Norimoto of the Eagles getting his 1000th strikeout (which was also highlighted on his player card in the Series Two set) and Yoshitomo Tsutsugoh of the Baystars getting his 150th home run.  Other players in the set include Yuki Yanagita and Takahiro Arai.  For several of the players in the subset this is there only Calbee card this year - Tomoyuki Sugano, Daisuke Matsuzaka and Norichika Aoki are probably the biggest names in this group.  Here's the Kaneko card:

The four checklist cards feature highlights from the middle part of the season - Hiroki Nishikawa of the Fighters getting his 200th career stolen base on June 1st, Daisuke Yamai's win over the Baystars on May 22nd. Kazuya Fukuura setting the record for most games played for Lotte (2162) on April 10th and the Swallows clinching the "interleague championship" on June 17th.  Here's the Swallows card:

You can see all the cards (including the "Star" insert cards and the "RBI Leader" box set that is available as a "Lucky Card" redemption) over at Jambalaya.


Sean said...

I still haven't gotten my own Series 3 set, but glad they broke the mold somewhat and featured a few pictures of something other than pitchers pitching and batters batting.

Cardfan108 said...

I was able to have a few (a lot of?) chips during a recent business trip and picked up about 50 of these cards. I got a lot of hits with Star Cards, including a couple that seem to be autographed. Does anyone know anything about the star card frequency, autograph card frequency, or total numbers?