Sunday, September 8, 2019

2019 BBM 2nd Version Franchise Builder Insert Set

One of the gripes that both Ryan and I have had about Japanese baseball cards is that there haven't been many cards that feature ballparks on them.  Sure BBM did a subset featuring all the current parks back in their 1992 flagship set but of the 11 parks included in the subset only five of them (Tokyo Dome, Jingu, Koshien, Yokohama Stadium and Chiba Marine Stadium) continue to be in regular use and look much as they did then.  Of the other six, Seibu Stadium had a dome added, Kobe Green Stadium is only used as a secondary home for the Buffaloes, Nagoya Stadium has been downsized to host the Dragons' farm team and Heiwadai, Hiroshima and Fujiidera Stadiums have all been torn down.  (BBM also did a set called "The Ballpark Stories" a couple years ago that managed to not actually show any of the regular NPB ballparks.)

BBM kinda-sorta addressed this with the "Franchise Builder" insert set in this year's 2nd Version set.  There's 12 cards in the set - one for each team.  Each card features a photo of one of the top players for a team superimposed over a panorama of the team's primary ballpark.  I don't normally get the insert sets but I liked this one a lot and asked Ryan to pick up one for me - we had both found an auction on Yahoo! Japan Auctions for the complete set for 1200 yen.  Luckily for me Ryan had gotten the inserts as part of the 2nd Version set he bought, otherwise he'd have wanted that 1200 yen set for himself.  The set was in the box of cards I got from him the other day.

Here's all 12 cards:












The cards all have a gold finish so the photos aren't as clear as the should be.  And there's no data for the parks on the cards - they don't even have the name of the parks on them.  But something is better than nothing.

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