Yes, Virginia, Shohei Ohtani Autos Are in 2018 Bowman Mega Boxes
The original 2018 Bowman Mega Box checklist put out by Topps had just one Shohei Ohtani card — a ROY Favorites insert. And it was just a regular insert. There were no hints of any Ohtani ink in the Target-exclusive product.
But look what’s popped up on eBay — a redemption for a Shohei Ohtani Rookie Autograph.
Topps confirmed the redemption is legit via Twitter.
Unannounced Shohei Ohtani redemptions for 2018 Bowman Chrome base autographs were placed into random packs of the Bowman Mega Box, available at Target. A new checklist has been updated, which features the redemption card. A limited number are available. https://t.co/oK5oZWLoBH
— Topps Company (@Topps) May 24, 2018
It’s important to note that the redemption is good for a copy of the same Shohei Ohtani Chrome Rookie Autograph found in 2018 Bowman Baseball packs. We did confirm with Topps to clarify the Tweet that it’s not a patterned parallel like other Mega Box cards. It’s the same card that’s already out there.
Topps is no stranger to surprise inclusions in products. Normally, though, it’s variation short prints. And even then, they’re listed among the odds on packs but not necessarily on the company checklist.
The highest profile of something unannounced like this in recent years in baseball would likely be the 2013 Bowman Draft Kris Bryant autographs spread across a handful of 2014 products.