Wednesday, August 26, 2015

The 1990s Baseball Cards Face-Off - Which Set is the Best, continued

Check this post to see my methodology.

We're working our way through the Babe Ruth Division. Here's where we stand.

1998 E-X 2001, 1993 Flair (a fan favorite) and 1995 Ultra have moved into the Red Level. 1995 Bowman's Best, 1999 Topps and 1998 Pacific Omega have been eliminated.

Today 1996 Studio and 1994 O-Pee-Chee go head-to-head.

1996 Studio

After the horrible 1995 'credit card' set, Studio returned to what made it a great set, although with a bit different direction. The cards were glossy and full bleed printed front and back. The front featured a large, nearly full, head shot plus a smaller insert full body action shot (that's the new twist). The backs featured an action shot and a head shot in a circle. Head shots in a circle were quite popular in the mid-199s. For the first time, last year's and career stats were included. Silver foil is was used on the front to highlight the player's and team's names and the team logo.

1994 O-Pee-Chee

In 1993, Canadian company O-Pee-Chee stopped using the Topps design on its cards (as it had been doing forever) and started designing its own cards. They also seemed to be making a bigger push in the US as their cards were readily available in retail stores. In 1994 the set went full bleed front and back. Not a bad looking card. A large photo on the front and back, with bio and complete stats ghosting out the bottom of the back photo. Note that highlight colors take off from the player's team colors. The design did not use foil.

The Result: Although I think the 1994 OPC card is nice, it doesn't hold a candle to 1996 Studio. I particularly like that the Studio has the card year on the front and the tasteful use of silver foil. And it manages to get four photos on the card. It's not the best year of Studio (that would be 1993 or 1994) but it's close. It's also the last good year for Studio in the 1990s.

OK, we're halfway through the First Quartile of the Babe Ruth Division. Stick with me.

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