I haven't really cared for Bowman for many years. I always buy some (gotta have some) but it has not been a product a look forward to. I was quite prepared for another year of (yawn) Bowman, especially after reading some blog comments. I bought 6 20-card rack packs. I was pleased to not get a single duplicate card. And no, I didn't get a Stephen Strasborg card.But I was surprised when I actually bought some, that I rather like the 2010 Bowman. It's got the same basic red on black design it has had since 1997, but there have been a few design changes which, for me, elevate this year's set above any set since 1998. For one thing, the frosted area with the facsimile signature is gone.
This signature area seems to have gotted larger every year. Last year it covered about a third of the photo. For another, the borders are a lot less complicated. And one really big change, the front of the card features a team logo for the first time in 10 years.
Notice also that the photo fades into white just before the black border. I really like that look. I've been featuring the cards here is reverse numerical order. It looks like they have all the horizontal cards clustered. The lowest horizontal card I have is #162.
The set has the same ordering it has had for many years. The black and red cards are veterans and the black and green cards are rookies. As they have done for a few years, the prospect cards are a separate insert with an entirely different design.
Here's a bit of product placement, a box of tasty Frito Lay products in the dugout.
Gordon Beckham running the bases with abandon. The only foil on the cards are the player name. Silver foil on a black background looks good in person but it just doesn't scan well.
Posada going after a pop-up.
Some more product placement. Of the 48 veteran cards I have, 10 of them feature recognizable advertising. Is this a function of their just being more advertisements in ball parks or some conscience effort by Topps to garner revenue from sponsors?
This is my favorite action shot.
The rack packs also had Bowman Chrome Prospect cards. The Chrome cards seem to come in the normal flavors, blue, gold, orange, red and purple, with superfractors. According to the card listings on Beckett.com, there doesn't seem to be Xfractors this year.
I may buy some more.