Thursday, February 13, 2020

Which 70s Set Should I Build? 1973 Topps edition

I've been trying to decide which 1970s set to start building for my next vintage set build, but I can't seem to make up my mind. So, I'm going to take a little closer look at what I already have in my collection and try to narrow it down.

I don't know about you, but I rarely see cards from this set in good condition. Which is to say, most cards I've encountered from the set are in G-VG condition, or worse. I feel like my opinion of this set has been tainted by all the faded colors and rounded corners and creases. Is this a thing? Are the cards of this set notorious for bad condition, or is it just me?

The big name rookies in this set of course share a card at the end of the set, Ron Cey and Mike Schmidt. There are quite a few more less famous rookie cards in this set, such as Buddy Bell above. Also included were Dave Goltz, Goose Gossage, Gary Maddox, Rick Reuschel, and Gary Matthews.

I have a 1973 Wantlist, but it's not to complete the full set, it's just a list of cards I thought I'd like to add to my collection at some point.

1973: 10, 13, 35, 45, 50, 52, 72, 73, 86, 90, 92, 97, 111, 130, 150, 151, 152, 155, 160, 171, 174, 180, 190,  210, 220, 231, 236, 253, 263, 265, 273, 280, 300, 307, 320, 322, 330, 333, 360, 376, 378, 380, 384, 420, 431, 440, 447, 452, 468, 495, 498, 518, 545, 568, 574, 575, 597, 599, 615, 627

The card backs look good to me. Players with longer careers, like Frank Robinson, still get their full MLB career on the back with room for a cartoon and a little blurb. 

Here's a full page of my favorites from the set already in my collection. I have never been a very big fan of this set. I do like the positional pose logos on the fronts, but there's just something about the cards themselves that look amateurish to me - like they were printed poorly, on less than the best card stock. 

What do you think are the Pros and Cons of the 1973 Set? I'd love to hear your opinion!


  1. The most recent vintage set I've completed so I have a good handle on this.

    Pros: Lots of weird, different photos, especially for the time it was released. The airbrushing is borderline madness. ... Also, it's not that difficult to complete, aside from the Schmidt rookie. And the cartoons are great.

    Cons: The condition of '73s is definitely a thing. I wouldn't say it has more rounded corners than, say, sets from the '50s, but there is something about the card stock that's inferior. It's almost like the cards want to crumble of something.

    But it's a fun set.

  2. This is the last set I need to complete my run of Topps flagship sets from my birth year to 1986. I've never considered building it due to the cost. I have however looked into buying a complete set, but the cost has not gotten to the point where it's out of my price range. But I do have a few singles I've picked up over the years. I'm especially fond of the Johnny Bench and Vida Blue cards in this set.

    As for the condition issue... I'd have to take a closer look at my singles. But I feel like the majority of my 1973 cards and older are in pretty rough shape.

  3. '73 Topps would get my vote. It's just such a fun set -- kind of an anomaly for the time period too with all the strange photos.

  4. There are so many wonderful cards in this set. Many unique photos like Ellis. How have I NOT known this card?? One more to pursue. Thanks for the introduction!