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Thursday, August 13, 2009

How Upper Deck Can Thrive in 2010 - Part 1

This was originally going to be a big huge monster post, but due to time constraints I'm going to chop it up into a bunch of little ones.

Topps getting an exclusive MLB license is old news by now and pretty much everyone has come out decisively with an opinion on the subject. So now Upper Deck can't put MLB logos on their cards anymore, but they've got that MLBPA license and you know they're going to do something with it. Inspired by Mario's Memos, I came up with a few ideas of my own to keep UD in the game and being the loudmouth that I am, I'm going to share 'em with the world. The first one is fairly obvious and it's something they are already doing anyway. Take a look at this page out Goudey cards out of my Oldy Moldies binder.

Notice something here? On these original Goudey cards from 1933-1936 there barely any logos to be found. The Whist Sox has their cap logo and CHICAGO plastered on their jerseys, but everyone else is pretty generic. Jack Russell doesn't need no stinkin' W on his cap, why would Ryan Zimmerman? Retro fans will pretty much buy up anything you throw at them (I should know...) Listen UD Marketing Wizards, if some yahoo complains that '10 Goudey looks gauche with no logos just stick that Danny MacFayden card in ther face and yell at the top of your lungs "We're just being AUTHENTIC, goddammit!". If the yelling doesn't shut 'em up, that look (and those glasses!) on Danny's mug sure will.

Ok, so let's say that UD has already decided that Goudey is played out. I could certainly understand that. There are plenty of other options. Goodwin Champions is coming out one of these days, revise it for 2010 with no logos. It looks pretty dang good from what I've seen of it so far, run with it. UD has also dabbled a bit with Play Ball and Old Judge designs and there's still a whole bunch of vintage designs to swipe out there. Remember, there weren't a lot of corporate logos back in the 1880's.

Well, there's the obvious solution to the loss of a license and one that's likely already in the works if UD is smart. Collectors like retro and UD maintains some continuity on the Goudey brand during their time in exile. My next post on the subject will involve some thievery and an idea that has been neglected in the past decade...


Grand Cards said...

I had that exact same thought the other day and couldn't agree more. Goudey can certainly keep on going without logos, because so many of those cards didn't have logos in the first place. My next thought was to make a set of players wearing only their Negro League throwbacks. Just about every team does that now, and you could make a whole set out of them without using any MLB logos and still have current pictures and live action.

Carl Crawford Cards said...

Dizzy Dean AND Danny Macfayden? That's pretty sharp.

I'm with Grand Cards---the Negro League throwbacks would be sweet. I imagine licensing would be via the Negro Leagues Museum, and NOT MLB, so te money would even go to a better place.

Captain Canuck said...

first, a Roach sighting, very cool.
second, you title Stayin' Alive and no Bee Gees clip? I thought we had a clip? No? No clip?

Slangon said...

I like both the Goudey idea and the throwback idea. Tho UD need to step it up from this years Goudey set. It's bad enough that the pictures were so weird looking that you could barely tell what player it's supposed to be, now you won't know what team they play for.

night owl said...

That'll work for one or two of the Upper Deck sets (how many will UD issue next year?)

But I'm trying to envision what they're going to do for their flagship set. That's really going to be a tough one for them.

jacobmrley said...

plus, they can be selective with the photos they choose. Donruss has tried to do that (with mixed results) for their Extra Edition sets and whathaveyou; pick photos where if the logo is airbrushed it isn't a horrorshow, or pick one where game action properly obscures it (like a play at the plate or a dynamic follow through). Upper Deck has been going down hill in quality the last two years, here is there chance to triumph through adversity.