Commentary: 2007 Topps Auto RC Releases
I was so excited last week to finally see some Elijah Dukes Auto RC's for sale (before that there were only his Finest Redemption RC's). The two product releases that I'm talking about are 07 Bowman & Topps Co-Signers. After watching them for a week, I found that the Co-Signers had way too many parallel versions. They were #'d to 50,75,100,125,150,175,225,250,275! Why in the world would anyone come out with such a ridiculous product?! When you have so many versions with similar serial #'s, all you do is dilute the value of all of them. Basically you're gonna have two levels of TAC value (for 9 versions!). In my opinion, this is a waste of Auto RC's. Topps doesn't win with this either. They have to use a different color for each version (& different serial #), and run each parallel separately, which I'm sure creates a loss in production efficiency. The Product/Brand Manager (or whoever is responsible for making these decisions) should really rethink their strategy for RC cards. As a collector, I wouldn't buy any of them. Up until a few years ago, Topps was the clear #1 card company for Baseball RC's. Recently, Upper Deck has been releasing better products than them, with brands like SPx, Ultimate Collection & UD Prospect Premieres. Pretty soon, the only advantage that Topps will have is their exclusivity with some of the players. Doesn't Topps want people to buy their cards because of their quality, not because they have no choice if they want a particular player?
I think that Bowman is a better bet for Dukes Auto RC's. They have a base non-#'d version, a Blue #'d 500 and an Orange #'d 250 (there's also a Gold version, but I haven't seen any on auction yet). I would definitely steer clear of the Co-Signers RC's.