For collectors who love pursuing autograph and memorabilia cards of baseball’s up-and-coming talent, it doesn’t get any better than 2017 Bowman Chrome.
Every year, Topps puts out Bowman and Bowman Chrome focusing on players making their hobby premieres and young talent ready to make an impact in MLB. 2017 Bowman Chrome baseball demonstrates that once again, that focus can pay off for collectors.
While the design and most of the contents are the set are exactly what collectors familiar with the product’s reconfiguration in 2016 will expect, 2017 does bring some unique twists.
In addition to the normal hobby box, Topps has also produced an HTA Choice box filled with nothing but autograph cards.
According to the official checklist, the base card set goes up to 100, with a solid mix of rookies and veterans. New to the products this year is a mix of short-printed image variations of several rookie cards which are found only in hobby boxes.
The chase begins with base card refractor parallels, found in Blue, Gold, Green, Orange, Red, Purple and SuperFractor. SuperFractors are the most rare, with a one-of-one distinction. Red Refractors are numbered to five, and Orange Refractors are numbered to 25. Both Red Refractors and SuperFractors are available in hobby boxes only.
The well-known Bowman Chrome Prospects subset is back for 2017, and it contains the likes of Amed Rosario, Clint Frazier, Rafael Devers and Paul DeJong. Each pack contains two Bowman Chrome Prospects and just like the base set, there are multiple parallels. In addition to the Gold, Green, Orange (numbered to 25), Red (hobby only, numbered to five) and SuperFractor (hobby only, one of one), there are Refractors and Bowman 70th Logo Refractors.
In addition to the refractor parallels, Bowman Chrome Prospect cards also come in four different Shimmer parallels. Black (one of one), Gold, Green and Orange (numbered to 25) are the variations which will come one per hobby box.
Other inserts include Arizona Fall League Fall Stars, Scouts’ Updates and Refractors That Never Were. AFL Stars and Updates will also come in Orange (numbered to 25) and SuperFractor (one of one) parallels. There is also a short-printed card devoted specifically to Willie Calhoun of the Los Angeles Dodgers, who was named the Arizona Fall League’s MVP last year.
Chrome Rookies begins the autograph chase with 17 different players, including Los Angeles Dodgers star Cody Bellinger. The standard seven different Refractor parallels of those are included. Autographed versions of the Bowman Chrome Prospect cards deliver not only the base versions but all the same refractor parallels that the base Bowman Chrome Prospects feature with one exception. Instead of Bowman 70th Logo Refractors, the autographed version comes in a Blue Refractor. Both Chrome Rookies and Bowman Chrome Prospects autographs are on-card autographs.
The three primary inserts; Arizona Fall League Stars, Refractors That Never Were and Scouts’ Updates, all have autograph parallels as well. New to Bowman Chrome for 2017 are two more autograph additions. Chrome Sensation Autographs, complete with Orange Refractor and SuperFractor variations, complement Prime Chrome Signatures. Prime Chrome also comes in SuperFractors.
Five All-America Game Autographs, which were signed by the featured players while they were still in high school, and the Inscriptions autograph subset complete the listing of autograph products available this year. The Calhoun AFL MVP card also has an autograph parallel.
The AFL cards also deliver a relic variation, containing pieces of memorabilia from the 2016 season. Those cards feature autograph, Orange Refractor and SuperFractor parallels. Bringing further relic cards for 2017 is the new Chrome Autograph Relic Cards, which will offer collectors the chance to nab a piece of game-used bat or jersey embedded in an autographed card. Once again, Gold Refractor, Orange Refractor and SuperFractor parallels will be throw in.
While each hobby box delivers great value with two guaranteed Arizona Fall League Fall Stars inserts, two mini boxes and two guaranteed autographs, there is yet another option for collectors who want to ensure that they get nothing but the hits.
The HTA Choice boxes guarantee three autographs, and come with exclusives that should make collectors anxious to purchase them. There is an exclusive parallel of the Bowman Chrome Prospects autographs, which will include Black Limited Edition Refractor (one of one), Gold Shimmer Refractor (numbered to 50) and Orange Wave Refractor (numbered to 25) versions. Orange Refractors of the Prime Chrome Signatures, numbered to 25, will also only be in HTA Choice boxes only.
Whether collectors opt for the hobby or HTA Choice boxes, or both, they are sure to get their fix for pieces of MLB’s best young talent to add to their collections. The wide variety of autograph and relic cards in addition to the superb design of the Refractor variations make 2017 Bowman Chrome a must for all collectors when it drops on Friday, Sept. 29.