Sunday, July 07, 2013

Product Review: 2013 Bowman Inception Hobby Box

The Inception brand has come over to Baseball for 2013. Having success with it's NFL products Topps decided to move into Baseball with this brand and provide the same mid/high-end product that it's known for.
Inception will pack a punch with collectors as it will provide you with on-card autographs along with relics and patches. Each box/pack will contain 5 cards, 4 Autographs and 1 Autographed Relic. The product is considered a prospect brand that will be a hit with those Bowman Prospect Collectors.
47 of the top prospects in the game are featured within the "base" set. Hard to call it a base set when each card is autographed, but to some they might be collecting all 47 to complete it. Along with every Topps set are Parallels which are plenty in here. The first 47 cards have 8 different ones to chase including a framed printing plate. Gold, Blue, Orange, Green, Red, Purple and Inception all are serial numbered from /99 down to 1/1.

There are six different relic inserts to collect from the basic single relic/jersey swatch to Jumbo Relics, Triple Relics, Patches and Logo Patches. Most of the relics are serial numbered except for the base Single relics are not. However they do have Red, Blue and Inception parallels which are numbered from /25 to 1/1.

A couple of intriguing cards have been placed into the product. Bryce Harper, Yu Darvish, Mike Trout and Manny Machado all have Autographed Relic and Patch cards to find. So even some of last years rookies are in the product adding to the chase. Topps also recently including the hot rookie for the Dodgers Yasiel Puig as well. These will all be redemption's though since he was a very late add into the product.

So with all this being said and a price of $125 a box your hopeful that your $25 per card investment will pan out, or at least give you some thrill while opening the pack. Lets see how we did on this one:

Prospect Autograph#1: Brad Miller
Prospect Autograph #2: Jorge Bonifacio Blue /75
Prospect Autograph #3: Jonathan Singleton Redemption
Rookie Autograph #4: Jake Odorizzi Orange /50
Autographed Relic: Slade Heathcott
The design of the cards are great. Love the way Topps put these together and always love the thicker stock. Being that 4 of the 5 cards are on-card autographs is a real value add for us. Now you might not be looking at value in the sense of return on the cards, but more along the value of what you are receiving in the time it takes to put this together from a manufacturers point. Again they are trying to provide the most to us as collectors and having on-card autographs are never easy, so we applaud on this when we can.
So we didn't hit the big finds of the product but we managed to pull two parallels which was a nice add. The Redemption for the Singleton is a little puzzling due to the fact there are some base autographs in the secondary market already, so the reason for the redemption is weird. Also we tried to redeem it and it looks to not be in the system just yet. We'll wait a few more days and check again, if we'll call Topps and see what the story is.
The Heathcott Relic auto is alright due to the fact it has a very nice solid pinstripe on the relic, the autograph is a sticker though and you most likely will find these on the relics for the rest of the players.
Our best overall card was probably the Odorizzi only because he has been a top prospect for a while and now in the majors. Also because of the low serial number on-card autograph it's value will increase with his performance.
If your not into prospects this might not be the product for you. A lot of the players in here you won't know nor will you for a little time. Unless you are buying it for the big hits it might be one to stay away from. We didn't come away with $25 value for each card nor can we see that for any of these in the future. So in the value side it is a miss but it was fun to break it open and see the cards.

Most cards/hits pulled in our breaks end up on our site storefront, our COMC account ThePackGambler, or our eBay account thepackgambler. If you are interested in any of the cards we have mentioned please send us an e-mail at

Gambler Overall Rating: 4.16 out of 5
Cost: 4.5/5
Autographs: 5/5
Relics: 3.5/5
Parallels: 4/5
Concept: 4/5
Fun Aspect: 4/5

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