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Why is the 1996 Topps set so TINY (440 cards)? Was it because of the 1994 strike?

EstilEstil Posts: 6,915 ✭✭✭✭

One thing I have always wondered about is why the 1996 Topps set is so TINY (just 440 cards)...is it because of the 1994 strike?

WISHLIST
Dimes: 54S, 53P, 50P, 49S, 45D+S, 44S, 43D, 41S, 40D+S, 39D+S, 38D+S, 37D+S, 36S, 35D+S, all 16-34's
Quarters: 52S, 47S, 46S, 40S, 39S, 38S, 37D+S, 36D+S, 35D, 34D, 32D+S
74 Topps: 37,38,46,47,48,138,151,193,210,214,223,241,256,264,268,277,289,316,435,552,570,577,592,602,610,654,655
1997 Finest silver: 115, 135, 139, 145, 310
1995 Ultra Gold Medallion Sets: Golden Prospects, HR Kings, On-Base Leaders, Power Plus, RBI Kings, Rising Stars

Comments

  • frankhardyfrankhardy Posts: 8,046 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Short answer..... Probably

    Shane

  • CardGeekCardGeek Posts: 398 ✭✭✭
    edited October 24, 2023 12:27PM

    It was likely because demand for sports cards had disappeared around 1996.

    Interest in baseball picked up when the they started blasting homeruns. Probably a connection.

  • EstilEstil Posts: 6,915 ✭✭✭✭

    It's a real shame because this was the year they really went all out to honor Mickey Mantle and it had to be the year Topps not only mailed it in on the set size but the design is rather minimalist and lazy too.

    WISHLIST
    Dimes: 54S, 53P, 50P, 49S, 45D+S, 44S, 43D, 41S, 40D+S, 39D+S, 38D+S, 37D+S, 36S, 35D+S, all 16-34's
    Quarters: 52S, 47S, 46S, 40S, 39S, 38S, 37D+S, 36D+S, 35D, 34D, 32D+S
    74 Topps: 37,38,46,47,48,138,151,193,210,214,223,241,256,264,268,277,289,316,435,552,570,577,592,602,610,654,655
    1997 Finest silver: 115, 135, 139, 145, 310
    1995 Ultra Gold Medallion Sets: Golden Prospects, HR Kings, On-Base Leaders, Power Plus, RBI Kings, Rising Stars
  • EstilEstil Posts: 6,915 ✭✭✭✭

    @CardGeek said:
    It was likely because demand for sports cards had disappeared around 1996.

    Interest in baseball picked up when the they started blasting homeruns. Probably a connection.

    There was that little matter of Cal Ripken Jr breaking Lou Gehrig's record, which my grandpa said was making something out of nothing! (he thought a record of just showing up to work wasn't a big deal)

    WISHLIST
    Dimes: 54S, 53P, 50P, 49S, 45D+S, 44S, 43D, 41S, 40D+S, 39D+S, 38D+S, 37D+S, 36S, 35D+S, all 16-34's
    Quarters: 52S, 47S, 46S, 40S, 39S, 38S, 37D+S, 36D+S, 35D, 34D, 32D+S
    74 Topps: 37,38,46,47,48,138,151,193,210,214,223,241,256,264,268,277,289,316,435,552,570,577,592,602,610,654,655
    1997 Finest silver: 115, 135, 139, 145, 310
    1995 Ultra Gold Medallion Sets: Golden Prospects, HR Kings, On-Base Leaders, Power Plus, RBI Kings, Rising Stars
  • EstilEstil Posts: 6,915 ✭✭✭✭

    And maybe it's just me but I think Fleer in 1996 and especially 1997 cut back production too, as for whatever reason it's really hard to find 1996 and 1997 Ultra sets (thank GOD I got the Gold Medallion sets way back when as if the regular sets hardly ever show up then...)

    WISHLIST
    Dimes: 54S, 53P, 50P, 49S, 45D+S, 44S, 43D, 41S, 40D+S, 39D+S, 38D+S, 37D+S, 36S, 35D+S, all 16-34's
    Quarters: 52S, 47S, 46S, 40S, 39S, 38S, 37D+S, 36D+S, 35D, 34D, 32D+S
    74 Topps: 37,38,46,47,48,138,151,193,210,214,223,241,256,264,268,277,289,316,435,552,570,577,592,602,610,654,655
    1997 Finest silver: 115, 135, 139, 145, 310
    1995 Ultra Gold Medallion Sets: Golden Prospects, HR Kings, On-Base Leaders, Power Plus, RBI Kings, Rising Stars
  • Interesting. I have no explanation for it but I was so knee deep in 94, less in 95. By 96 I had completely checked out. Of course I checked back in eventually.

  • EstilEstil Posts: 6,915 ✭✭✭✭

    @UlyssesExtravaganza said:
    Interesting. I have no explanation for it but I was so knee deep in 94, less in 95. By 96 I had completely checked out. Of course I checked back in eventually.

    I was too (started getting packs regularly late 1993) so naturally I have this nostalgia kind of thing for 1994's...or maybe the inserts that year were just THAT good. I haven't been able to afford to much in this project lately but I have been trying to get all the early-mid 90s inserts I can (especially Fleer/Ultra) and I do in fact that some master sets (regular+all inserts)!

    WISHLIST
    Dimes: 54S, 53P, 50P, 49S, 45D+S, 44S, 43D, 41S, 40D+S, 39D+S, 38D+S, 37D+S, 36S, 35D+S, all 16-34's
    Quarters: 52S, 47S, 46S, 40S, 39S, 38S, 37D+S, 36D+S, 35D, 34D, 32D+S
    74 Topps: 37,38,46,47,48,138,151,193,210,214,223,241,256,264,268,277,289,316,435,552,570,577,592,602,610,654,655
    1997 Finest silver: 115, 135, 139, 145, 310
    1995 Ultra Gold Medallion Sets: Golden Prospects, HR Kings, On-Base Leaders, Power Plus, RBI Kings, Rising Stars
  • ReggieClevelandReggieCleveland Posts: 3,854 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Not sure if it's related but that was also the first year for Topps Chrome. Did they just mirror the paper set? If so, that may have played a role in it. Those cereal box factory sets were pretty small, too.

    Arthur

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