First Look: 2012 Panini Cooperstown baseball


By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

Cooperstown is a word that defines one thing when it comes to baseball — history.

The home of the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum in rural New York is a treasure trove of baseball lore — and now Panini America is aiming to make “Cooperstown” synonymous with one more thing.

Baseball cards.

The company revealed on Monday its next baseball product, 2012 Panini Cooperstown, a 200-card release that will arrive in late July with some of the greatest names in the game — and more. (For a checklist of recent releases or an OPG click here.)

In  February, the company announced its multiyear deal with the Hall and that prompted the start of the product that will include 24 packs and one autographed card per box. The biggest find, though, might be a redemption card good for a trip to the Hall itself.

In addition, each box will include two commemorative Class Patch cards, three Bronze History cards, three Crystal Collection cards, two Voices of Summer, two Induction and two Credentials insert cards. The set will focus on those enshrined in the museum as well as cards showcasing some of the artifacts in the collection.

We’ll have more on this one as it becomes available.

Chris Olds is the editor of Beckett Baseball magazine. Have a comment, question or idea? Send an email to him at Follow him on Twitter by clicking here.


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  1. Hscshooter 14 May, 2012 at 12:42

    Hey Chris,

    Will there be 1 or 2 autos per box? Images show cut cards as well.


  2. Mark Duell 14 May, 2012 at 13:05

    It is interesting how Panini gets a license from the Baseball Hall of Fame when Topps still has its exclusive with Major League Baseball. While the Hall is technically a separate entity, MLB is certainly influential via its board.

  3. chrisolds 14 May, 2012 at 13:11

    If you’re the Hall of Fame, it’s a revenue stream that is probably too strong to ignore.

  4. bearcatlawjd 14 May, 2012 at 13:34

    Anybody know what the price of a box or pack will be? A 24 pack configuration makes me believe it would be close to EEE or Playoff Contenders which was around $5. I would hope to see a retail box for this set as well. EEE went retail but I don’t remember seeing Playoff Contenders Baseball at retail.

    Triple Play and Cooperstown are two products I am really excited about. I am huge fan of art cards and hall of fame players.

  5. zotster 14 May, 2012 at 13:38

    Not to knock Panini’s effort, but the lack of logos really kills any enthusiasm I may have had for this set.

    That aside, I’d love to see another set some day like the 1980s SSPC Hall of Fame collector’s issue, with a card for every single Hall of Fame member. That would be a great set for any sport.

  6. Fabio 14 May, 2012 at 14:44

    from what i see, patches are manufactured, so basically there’s one hit per box, i hope the price won’t be higher than 80 dollars..
    and i agree with Deeez, I hope they don’t think about a “creative” way of putting prospects in this product, but wait, they can make an insert called “future heroes of the hall”..

  7. ddizzal 14 May, 2012 at 16:31

    this stuff will bomb like prime cuts and limited. Panini cant do baseball worth a dime

  8. CUJO 14 May, 2012 at 17:08

    I was excited until I saw the Gibson and Gehrig cards without a picture of them included anywhere.

  9. clinton johnson 14 May, 2012 at 18:00

    @Zotster I agree with you the lack of logos is a disappointing but it is a strong looking set that only has hall of famers so that should still be worth it.

  10. Keith S 14 May, 2012 at 20:15

    Maybe someone has answered this somewhere else, but how can Panini release cards with no logos (covered over, angled in such as way as to not see it, etc.), but Upper Deck got sued for such a thing a few years ago? Can anyone enlighten me as to the difference??

    I am just too much of a traditionalist to really go crazy over a no logo design.

  11. Mike McGovern 14 May, 2012 at 21:41

    @ddizzal: TOTALLY AGREE. Great concept, but Im guaranteeing poor execution. Would be a sweet product if it was coupled with an MLB license. I’ll keep saying it, MLB NEEDS to issue at least 2 licenses for the hobby. B&M Shops are getting killed by Panini Baseball products and collectors would also be better off with at least one competitor.

    Warning to LCS’s: Stay Away! The potential reward is not worth the risk!

  12. Mike 14 May, 2012 at 22:22

    So one auto & 2 manupatches a box? Unless its $60 a bx, no thanks.
    Manupatches are nice when they are bonuses in blaster bxs, not main finds in hobby bxs.

  13. Adam Shoemaker 15 May, 2012 at 00:43

    GREAT! (sarcastic exclamation)

    More Ozzie Smith cards for the database that I really don’t want to add to my collection but still increase the # of cards he’s on. Panini is releasing JUNK in baseball. They should really stop this crap until they can get an actual MLB license. The AU’s and memorabilia they are collecting would serve them better if they held off until they have a chance to get the right to add MLB logos to their products.
    Do they NOT realize that Donruss/Leaf/Playoff went in the hole doing the EXACT same thing?!?!?!

  14. Adam Shoemaker 15 May, 2012 at 00:55

    @ Keith S — Chrisolds is right (of course) ;)
    UD left logos on uniforms and/or put team logos on the cards when they did not have the right to do so.

    I want to say one more thing that’s somewhat related to this set. What is the fascination with MANUFACTURED PATCHES? That is the biggest slap-in-the-face that card companies can give us collectors. If there is fabric in the card or that is the basis for the card, it should be original pieces from a game-worn uniform.
    Yes, some of Topps’ manu. patch cards look good, BUT they are still FAKED patches. That just adds confusion to the hobby, as well as making it easier for scam artists to rip people off.

  15. bearcatlawjd 15 May, 2012 at 12:33

    The logo issue isn’t one for me. Panini can’t use them so why get caught up in it. That being said I would like to see more creative cards out there. Triple Play 2012 looks like a step in the right direction due to the art style. Why not bring back the Studio brand? Cooperstown looks like solid but the price could be make or break issue for some people.

    Panini also needs a brand that retails for around the same price as Topps’ flagship set . Right now they have mid-range to high-end products and are coming out with a low-end kid friendly product, which looks a much better than Topps Opening Day.

    Pick a brand, Studio, Donruss, Score, Pinnacle, Panini, Playoff, Cooperstown, and make it your flagship to rival Topps.

  16. zotster 15 May, 2012 at 13:01

    When I heard Panini was making baseball cards without an MLB Properties license, I thought for sure Studio would be in the mix. That to me seems like the perfect way to make a memorable set where the lack of logos is not an issue. The original Studio cards from the 1990s were a classic line.

    For a Hall of Fame set, an art set would seem to have made a lot of sense. But again, altered photos are a big turn-off for me.

  17. joe 15 May, 2012 at 18:55

    Why Panini would you to a page from Upper Deck and have a card with no photo of the player. That just doesn’t seem right. It’s bad enough that you can’t use the team logo, now you aren’t even using a players piccture.

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