Monday, April 14, 2014

Product Review: 2014 Topps Gypsy Queen Baseball Hobby Box

For the past couple of years this has been the product that I keep going back to. Topps Gypsy Queen is a very close version of another Allen and Ginter product but keeps to Baseball only specifics. 2014 Gypsy Queen is in for another great year in the hobby. 

The richness of the design and photography bring collectors back each year to complete the set. 300 cards deep with 50 SP's to collect is the continued standard for this product each year. New into the fold are 50 Reverse Negatives to hunt down. I'm not a fan of these in any product but I can only assume Topps was trying it out this year. Framed Parallel's are back with Blue numbered to 499, White (Retail) and Silver 1/1. 

One of the successes of Gypsy Queen are the Mini's. These of course are back and include Black, Red, Sepia, Wood, and Leather parallel's. These are always in high demand and tough to complete a full set. The Mini's also have 100 SP's to collect which are found in packs and Mini Box Toppers (Hobby Box only). 

A couple of new Mini Parallel's to hit this year are 151 Clear Mini Framed and Graphite (each 1/1) and Mini Birth Year Pennies (100 cards) all 1/1. Speaking of new editions, Topps also has introduced Around the Horn Pop-up Autographed Book cards, Dual and Triple Autographed Relics, Bat Barrels, Dual and Triple Button Relics, and Hometown Flag Patches. 

There is a lot of things jam packed into the 2014 edition of Gypsy Queen. Some say to keep things the way they are and continue with the "tradition" of the original release. Well this could be true for a couple of new items like the Hometown Flags and the Birth Pennies, but all in all Topps has produced another great product into our hobby to enjoy. 

Lets find out how we did in our box break;

Base Cards: 181 (0 doubles)
Base Card SP: 6 - Tanaka (RC), Boggs, Trout, Hunter, B. Hamilton (RC), S. Gray
Base Card Blue Paper Parallel: 2 - George Brett /499, Jonathan Schoop /499
Base Card Mini: 19
Base Card Mini SP: 1 - Hunter Pence
Base Card Black: 3 - Posey /150, Ziegler /150, J. Fernandez (SP) /150
Base Card Sepia: 1 - Willie Mays (SP) /50
Base Card Mini Box SP: 10 - Trout, Johnson, Fielder, Martinez, Goldschmidt, Sandoval, Smith, Ryan, Schmidt, Napoli
N174 Gypsy Queen: 6 - Jeter, Puig, Ruth, Rivera, Ripken, Jackson
Dealing Aces: 6 - Price, Bumgarner, Lee, Kershaw, Strasburg,Wainwright
Debut All-Stars: 4 - Longoria, Fielder, Harvey, Hernandez
Glove Stories: 4 - Jeter, Crawford, Puig, Gomez
Game Used: 2 - Zack Wheeler, Gio Gonzalez (Mini Framed)
Autographs: 2 - Jonathan Pettibone, Carlos Martinez
Printing Plate: 1 - Brandon Moss 1/1

Lets start with the basics. 2014 comes in with another great vintage design which brings to live each player in the 350 card set. Our box didn't have any doubles which provides some hope in completing a 300 card set without SP's in two boxes. The SP's are tough even at only 50, and with some of the big names included your sure to pay a bit to complete your set.
How can you not love Mini's? They really bring the old time cards into our recent products. Only 1 of our Mini SP's came from a pack with the rest being from the Mini Box. The Black and Sepia borders are great looking. Mini's will always be fun to collect and trade among collectors.
Inserts in Gypsy Queen are just as nice as the Base Cards. Plus depending on who you pull just as valuable. Glove Stories always have great shots of amazing plays and the newly added Debut All-Stars is a nice add of players in their rookie days at an All-Star game.  
Another new insert the N174 are pretty cool and provide an even stronger presence of vintage to the product. The feel and look of the Framed Base are pretty cool. Adding the serial numbering helps this insert in the secondary market and also gives a very strong collecting notion to collectors. Grabbing your favorite team or player would be the best way to go with these instead of the full set. 
If you love on-card autographs, this is a product for you. It doesn't matter who you pull or which team for some collectors looking for this in a product. Gypsy Queen again delivers the on-card autograph and it is nothing but great. Both players we pulled weren't the top of the checklist nor a team we collect, however being on-card these will keep their value over time compared to sticker autographs.  
This was definitely a Pitcher collect box, as our two Relics were also pitchers. Happy to pull the Wheeler for our PC and the Mini relic of Gio is a great presentation. Mini relics always do well and this year will be no different.
We managed to pull a printing plate out of our box for the second year in a row. This is always a treat and extra bonus you can find in a box. Printing plates don't have the same flare as they did when first introduced, but like anything if you pull the right one your in for some big returns.

Overall I'm very happy with the 2014 edition of Gypsy Queen. Another great looking set with lots to collect. It really has something for everyone that collects baseball. These hobby boxes can be a hit or miss and some might even consider this box to be a miss. Sure looking at just the Hits pulled I can see it, but when you combine that with 60% of the 300 card set pulled, the multiple inserts, the multiple Mini's and parallel Mini's this is a no brainer buy for a collector. If your looking for more out of this like one high end Autograph or Relic you should stay away. This product is strictly for set collectors and baseball nuts like myself to have a lot of fun ripping open the packs and enjoying the fullness of the product.

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

Gambler Overall Rating: 4.6 out of 5
Cost: 5/5
Memorabilia: 4/5
Autographs: 4.5/5
Parallels: 5/5
Inserts: 4/5
Fun Aspect: 5/5

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