Cheap Wax Wednesday Box Breaks: 2020 Topps Opening Day Baseball
It’s here! Baseball is back! Opening Day is tomorrow, and though it is not the exact baseball that any of us wanted (no fans, players opting out, shortened schedule, etc.) it’s still baseball. That has to count for something.
With that being said, it only made sense to share 2020 Topps Opening Day for this week’s Cheap Wax Wednesday box break. Topps debuted the Opening Day brand in 1998 as a stripped down version of their flagship release. The base cards looked just like Series 1 cards but had silver borders (instead of the bronze borders found in flagship) and an Opening Day logo stamped on the front. There were no insert cards. The brand was produced as a cheaper offering “for kids” and was retail exclusive. Packs cost 99 cents.
1999 Opening Day still contained no inserts outside of a very slim chance at pulling a Hank Aaron autograph. Hammerin’ Hank autographs were inserted in one out of every 29,642 packs. The near insert-less trend continued for several more years. It wasn’t until 2005 that Topps started to include parallels. An expanded insert lineup debuted in 2006.
The 2020 Topps Opening Day Baseball features base cards identical to Series 1 and 2 only with an Opening Day logo on the front. The kid-friendly product is loaded with exclusive inserts including mascots. While the release does feature autographs, the big chase in this year’s product is a short printed Luis Robert RC.
2020 Topps Opening Day Baseball Box Break
Cards per pack: 7
Packs per box: 36
Price paid: $27
Pack 1 highlights:
Yoan Moncada, Eduardo Rodriguez, Nick Senzel, Ronald Acuna, Jr., Mike Clevinger & Fredbird Mascots (1 in every 5 packs)
Pack 1 fun fact: The Indians acquired Mike Clevinger from the Angels in an August waiver trade back in 2014. Veteran reliever Vinnie Pestano went the other way in the deal. The Angels sure could use him now.
Trea Turner, Michael Chavis, Zack Greinke, Juan Soto & Gavin Lux Spring Has Sprung (1:7 packs)
Trevor Story, Rafael Devers, Javier Baez & Cody Bellinger Sticker Collection Preview (1:10 packs)
Pack 3 fun fact: Trevor Story is one of just three players with at least 30 home runs and 20 steals in each of the past two seasons. The others are Christian Yelich and Francisco Lindor.
Max Scherzer, Bo Bichette RC, Whit Merrifield & Tampa Bay Rays Opening Day (1:2 packs)
Jeff McNeil, Gavin Lux RC, Mike Trout, Clayton Kershaw Opening Day Edition (1:12 packs) & Miami Marlins Opening Day (1:2 packs)
Pack 5 fun fact: Jeff McNeil has a .321 batting average since the start of the 2018 season. Among players with at least 800 plate appearances during that time, only Christian Yelich (.327) has a higher average.
J.D. Martinez, Ozzie Albies, DJ LeMahieu & Paws Mascots (1:5 packs)
Masahiro Tanaka, Jorge Polanco, Jacob deGrom & San Fran’s Outfield Cable Car Team Traditions & Celebrations (1:10 packs)
Pack 7 fun fact: Jacob deGrom was a ninth-round pick in the 2010 draft out of Stetson University. The small school in Florida also produced Corey Kluber and Mariners prospect Logan Gilbert.
Aaron Nola, Corey Seager, J.T. Realmuto & Milwaukee Brewers Opening Day (1:2 packs)
Pete Alonso, Ryan Braun, Buster Posey & Pirate Parrot Mascots (1:5 packs)
Pack 9 fun fact: Ryan Braun is the Brewers’ all-time leader in home runs by a wide margin. His 344 long balls are well ahead of Robin Yount (251), Prince Fielder (230) and Geoff Jenkins (212).
Keston Hiura, Albert Pujols, Carter Kieboom, George Springer, Dustin May RC & Minnesota Twins Opening Day (1:2 packs)
Carlos Correa, Cavan Biggio & Sandy Koufax Spring Has Sprung (1:7 packs)
Pack 11 fun fact: Cavan Biggio had a higher WAR total (2.9) than fellow Blue Jays rookie phenoms Bo Bichette (2.3) and Vladimir Guerrero Jr. (1.5) last season.
Willson Contreras, Walker Buehler & Bo Bichette Spring Has Sprung (1:7 packs)
Nico Hoerner RC, Josh Bell & Texas Rangers Opening Day (1:2 packs)
Pack 13 fun fact: The Pirates gave Josh Bell a $5 million bonus as a second-round pick in 2011, signing him away from a firm commitment to the University of Texas. It’s the highest bonus ever given to a player outside the first round.
Freddie Freeman, Charlie Morton & Chicago’s Hand-Turned Scoreboard Team Traditions & Celebrations (1:10 packs)
Eddie Rosario, Justin Turner, Marcus Semien & Toronto Blue Jays Opening Day (1:2 packs)
Pack 15 fun fact: Justin Turner spent time with the Reds, Orioles and Mets organizations before finding success as a member of the Dodgers in his age-29 season. He’ll be a free agent this offseason.
Eugenio Suarez, Anthony Rendon, Jesus Luzardo RC, Nolan Arenado & Swinging Friar Mascots (1:5 packs)
Aristides Aquino RC, Jack Flaherty Opening Day Edition (1:12 packs) & Washington Nationals Opening Day (1:2 packs)
Pack 17 fun fact: Aristides Aquino was the No. 18 prospect in the Cincinnati farm system at the start of the 2019 season, according to Baseball America. You never know who’s going to break out.
Brendan McKay RC, Gleyber Torres, Tim Anderson & Pete Alonso Sticker Collection Preview (1:10 packs)
Anthony Rendon, Nolan Arenado & Toronto Blue Jays Opening Day (1:2 packs)
Pack 19 fun fact: Anthony Rendon made his first All-Star team in 2019. He’s finished in the top 11 in MVP voting four different times, but he had never been to the Midsummer Classic until last year.
Aristides Aquino RC, Yordan Alvarez RC & Washington Nationals Opening Day (1:2 packs)
Ketel Marte, Bryce Harper, Alex Bregman, Tyler Glasnow & New York Yankees Opening Day (1:2 packs)
Pack 21 fun fact: The Diamondbacks signed Ketel Marte to a five-year, $24 million extension that includes a pair of club options prior to the 2018 season. That now looks like one of the most team-friendly contracts in baseball.
Aaron Judge, Eloy Jimenez, Cody Bellinger, Joey Votto & St. Louis’ Musial Statue Team Traditions & Celebrations (1:10 packs)
Justin Verlander, Jack Flaherty, Yadier Molina, Christian Yelich & Cody Bellinger Spring Has Sprung (1:7 packs)
Pack 23 fun fact: Jack Flaherty was eight years old when Yadier Molina made his MLB debut on June 3, 2004.
Clayton Kershaw, Fernando Tatis, Jr. & Screech Mascots (1:5 packs)
Paul Goldschmidt, Andrew Benintendi & Mr. Met Mascots (1:5 packs)
Pack 25 fun fact: Paul Goldschmidt never appeared on a Baseball America Top 100 prospect list.
Anthony Rizzo, Giancarlo Stanton & Oakland Athletics Opening Day (1:2 packs)
Rhys Hoskins, Jorge Soler & Cincinnati Reds Opening Day (1:2 packs)
Pack 27 fun fact: With 36 home runs in 1985, Steve Balboni held the Royals’ single-season home run record for 32 years. That mark has now been surpassed twice in the past three seasons, with Jorge Soler (48 HR in 2019) now atop the leaderboard.
Shohei Ohtani, Manny Machado, Trey Mancini, Francisco Lindor & Philadelphia Phillies Opening Day (1:2 packs)
Vladimir Guerrero, Jr. & Atlanta’s Monument Garden Team Traditions & Celebrations (1:10 packs)
Pack 29 fun fact: It took Vladimir Guerrero Jr. 53 plate appearances to hit his first MLB home run last year. He then hit his second home run in the same game.
Nelson Cruz, Matt Chapman, Whit Merrifield Opening Day Edition (1:12 packs) & Cal Ripken Jr. Spring Has Sprung (1:7 packs)
Aroldis Chapman, Charlie Blackmon, Evan Longoria, Jon Lester & Kansas City Royals Opening Day (1:2 packs)
Pack 31 fun fact: Jon Lester has pitched at least 170 innings and made at least 31 starts in each of the last 12 seasons. His 2,537.2 career innings rank sixth among active pitchers, and that includes Bartolo Colon who is not currently on an MLB roster.
Gerrit Cole, Eric Hosmer, Jose Ramirez & Rosie Red Mascots (1:5 packs)
Austin Riley & Bryce Harper Sticker Collection Preview (1:10 packs)
Pack 33 fun fact: Austin Riley was part of the same 2015 draft class where the Braves selected Mike Soroka, A.J. Minter and Kolby Allard (now with Texas).
Kris Bryant & Los Angeles Dodgers Opening Day (1:2 packs)
Mookie Betts, Jose Altuve & San Diego Padres Opening Day (1:2 packs)
Pack 35 fun fact: Despite playing just six seasons in Boston, Mookie Betts ranks 10th all-time among Red Sox hitters with 41.8 WAR.
Alex Verdugo, A.J. Puk RC, Miguel Cabrera, Gary Sanchez & Seattle Mariners Opening Day (1:2 packs)
Lastly, the Miguel Cabrera card back. And what a card back it is. Look at all the stats! Do you think Miggy will reach 500 home runs in his career? He needs just 23, but has hit just 31 in his last three years combined.
This is exactly what you should expect from Opening Day. There are long odds on pulling any autographs, which I did not. The checklist has tons of inserts. I did well with my three Opening Day Edition parallels, pulling Kershaw, Merrifield and Flaherty. I did not pull a Luis Robert RC. While not officially announced, it is believed that these cards are found just once in every ten boxes. I bust a box of Opening Day every year, and will continue to do so. It’s cheap, fun, and gets you in the mood for baseball.
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Want more installments of Shane Salmonson’s Cheap Wax Wednesday? Check out his other breaks in the archives.