2019 Topps Walmart Holiday Baseball Box Break and Review

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In the first couple of years of Topps Walmart Holiday, I can’t say I was overly excited. I did start buying some of the 2018 boxes, but that was only after they started going on clearance. Things felt too much like the flagship set. Sure, there were the snowflakes, but it wasn’t enough to make me excited to double-dip on cards I essentially have already. 2019 Topps Walmart Holiday Baseball, on the other hand, takes things further, both in design and in content.

2019 Topps Walmart Holiday Baseball Box

Overall, the cards share the same layout as 2019 Topps Baseball and 2019 Topps Update. But instead of white snowflakes in a corner or two, the side border has been engulfed with a colorful bunch of holly. It’s a bolder look that’s hard to miss.

This is the ugly sweater equivalent of a set of baseball cards. It knows there’s a certain level of tackiness to it and wears it proudly. And that’s why it works for me. Topps has gone all-in with the theme and sticks the landing.

Of course, that’s not going to appeal to everyone. There’s not a lot that’s slick about this release. And that’s okay. No set it all-pleasing and one with holly borders and secret Santas is going to be no different.

Product Thoughts:

I like simple checklists. And that’s something 2019 Topps Walmart Holiday definitely has. The 200-card base set is small but it also means it’s got a lot of big names and, like 2018, some strong rookies.

Parallels are kept simple and minimal as well. The Metallic cards are okay if you’re a fan of sparkles and glue. Given this is the only product they’re used in, I don’t mind them.

I’m not usually a fan of variations, especially with this many in one product, but when I feel they work best is when there’s a consistent theme. And here, they certainly do. But I actually want to see this approach given to the main Topps Holiday base set. Let’s make all the regular cards a little goofy with holiday enhancements. But not as variations. Help make the cards more distinct with nods on the base cards like Santas, snowmen and bats channeling Lucille from¬†The Walking Dead.

But what if the product were to truly embrace its “Holiday” name and go beyond just Christmas. How about some Jewish imagery for Hanukkah? Or Kwanzaa? You can’t tell me a card with a Festivus pole wouldn’t be fun. Reindeer, gingerbread men, turkeys, brussel sprouts — let’s see them all in their rough Photoshop glory.

Maybe Topps could compliment things with some online sets around Easter or the 4th of July. There are lots of opportunities here. I’m not sure how viable they are, but the potential is there to take the theme started by the variations and go even further — as the base set.

Autographs and Memorabilia

Being a set builder, I gravitate towards products where autographs and memorabilia cards are more of a bonus than a driving factor. That definitely seems to be the case here. There’s some solid potential on the autographs portion of the checklist and the tough Santa hat Holiday Relics seem to have some fans, but I didn’t feel like I was chasing the impossible here. And with a plain Adalberto Mondesi relic, I didn’t get anything big. And I’m perfectly good with that.

2019 Topps Walmart Holiday Box Breakdown

Cards per pack: 10
Packs per box: 10
Total cards: 98

Base: 89
Doubles: 0

Inserts:

Metallic Parallels: 5
HW8 Juan Soto
HW72 Christian Yelich
HW113 Ozzie Albies
HW142 J.T. Realmuto
HW149 David Peralta

SP Variations: 2
HW57 Matt Chapman
HW189 Cavan Biggio

Rare Variations: 1
HW42 Cody Bellinger

Relic Cards: 1
WHR-AM Adalberto Mondesi

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Ryan Cracknell

A collector for much of his life, Ryan focuses primarily on building sets, Montreal Expos and interesting cards. He's also got one of the most comprehensive collections of John Jaha cards in existence (not that there are a lot of them). Got a question, story idea or want to get in touch? You can reach him by email and through Twitter @tradercracks.

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2 comments

  1. RJ 12 November, 2019 at 11:53

    I love this product and feel like it’s actually the best value as far as Topps retail of the entire season … it’s basically a season ending “best of” set of all 3 series, with all the main RCs along with attainable chase cards and parallels.

    Not to mention, it’ the only retail product of the year for Topps that includes a guaranteed hit.

    I busted two boxes this year and was fortunate enough to pull a Ronald Acuna Jr. auto/10 out of one of the boxes.

  2. Melvin Geloneck 12 November, 2019 at 16:45

    I love these cards as well! The variations are fun. So are not immediately obvious, as you showed with the Bellinger rare variation. That’s why I always check the Code to make sure. Code numbers ending in 63 are SP variations. Codes ending in 64 are SSP Rare variations. Codes ending in 65 are Super-rare variations. It’s a fun idea, and this year even the base cards are obviously different from the regular set. I love them!

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