Break – 1994 Select Series 1

Stats

base cards: 143 of 210 – 68.1% complete (143 duplicates/triplicates/quadruplicates)
Crown Contenders (1:24): 1 of 10 – 10%
Rookie Surge Series 1 (1:48): 1 of 9 – 11%
Select Salute (1:360): 0 of 2 – 0%

Some base cards with backs

The base cards are all horizontal in format. The right side of the card is a square shot of the player in any type of pose – batting cage, pitching, portrait, at bat, fielding, etc. The left side of the card is a small area that shows the player in a fielding pose appropriate to his position. Designated hitters are shown batting.

Here is Molitor celebrating the Toronto Blue Jays’ second consecutive World Series victory. Molitor joined the Blue Jays for the 1994 season and was the World Series MVP after batting .500 (12-24).

John Kruk takes a nap.

The card backs are mostly a shot of the player with minimal stats. The card highlights a “Select Stat” which is meant to be a highlight. Poor John Smiley, a pitcher. His key stat is his batting average, probably because his pitching record was 3-9 in 1993. In Smiley’s defense, he was having injury problems in 1993. He went 11-10 in 1994 for the Reds, who were 66-48 in a strike-shortened season.


There is just one subset – 1994 Rookie Prospects. Each pack starts with at least one, normally two, Rookie Prospects cards.  The cards have a vertical format. The backs carry wildly optimistic text about the abilities of the prospect. Keith Mitchell’s card states, “Keith made the team with his lusty spring-training power.” I’m not exactly sure what that means or if it even relates to on-field performance.


Inserts and parallels

Crown Contenders insert – CC5 Frank Thomas


Rookie Surge insert – RS9 Javier Lopez


Comments

  • collation
    Collation seemed pretty poor. The box contained 288 cards and afforded 143 base set cards and 143 duplicates (plus two inserts). Something like 156 base cards would be normal. For ten cards I got four copies of each. Therefore, 40 of the 288 cards gave me just ten different base cards. Sucks. The cards are definitely collated in groups of multiple cards. Groups of four cards are particularly common. For example, cards 31, 18, 10, and 25 appeared in order in four of the 24 packs. Looking over the contents of each pack below shows that lots of collation patterns were found.
  • card design
    I am not a big fan of the layout of these cards. Could I do better? Probably not, but I’ll complain anyway. The division of the card front leaves a decent space for the main picture, but the side picture is just about worthless. Furthermore, the colored tint of the side picture is reminiscent of something from the green-tinted The Matrix, but not nearly so cool. Lastly, the big name right in the middle gets in the way. It just takes up too much real estate that is needed for the pictures. Despite my negative opinions on this set, it does have its supporters. Back in 2008 during a break of a 1995 Select box, Stale Gum waxed poetic about 1994 Select being an all-time favorite.
  • inserts
    The set only has three inserts. My box had two, but not the 1:360 Select Salute long shot. The Rookie Surge card looks something like the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

Conclusion

I have to say that 1994 Select is a very forgettable set. The design is poor and too fragmented with the dual picture and large name. Is the set better than 1994 Score? I would have to say yes. In that regard, I guess that 1994 Select is at least something of a success. In comparison to the other 1994 sets, however, Select does not fare well. Regardless, I will probably pick up another box and try to get closer to completing Series 1.

Detailed list of pack contents

Selected groups of cards that frequently appear together in packs are given a common text color – orange, red, blue, and purple. Several more groups can be found, but I ran out of colors that show up well.

Back left stack (packs listed from top to bottom)
Pack 1: 197, 194, 131, 124, 111, 134, 150, 31, 18, 10, 25, 50
Pack 2: 199, 205, 169, 147, 133, 117, 104, 81, 36, 23, 29, 16
Pack 3: 197, 194, 144, CC5, 130, 123, 110, 65, 73, 90, 1, 74
Pack 4: 201, 130, 123, 101, 116, 110, 52, 38, 31, 18, 10, 25
Pack 5: 199, 158, 175, 95, 168, 146, 82, 2, 75, 53, 39, 32
Pack 6: 187, 136, 152, 160, 177, 97, 48, 64, 72, 89, 9, 51

Back right stack
Pack 1: 199, 102, 149, 157, 174, 94, 52, 38, 31, 18, 10, 25
Pack 2: 207, 193, 102, 149, 157, 174, 94, 50, 82, 2, 75, 53
Pack 3: 205, 181, 132, 125, 103, 151, 19, 11, 26, 66, 83
Pack 4: 207, 203, 170, 148, 112, 118, 105, 37, 24, 30, 17, 49
Pack 5: 205, 181, 167, 145, 131, 124, 111, 50, 82, 2, 75, 53
Pack 6: 198, 204, 167, 145, 131, 124, 111, 39, 32, 19, 11, 26

Front left stack
Pack 1: 186, 143, 129, 122, 109, 101, 48, 64, 72, 89, 9, 51
Pack 2: 188, 195, 165, 143, 129, 122, 109, 24, 30, 17, 49, 65
Pack 3: 191, 202, 157, 174, 94, 167, 145, 90, 1, 74, 52, 38
Pack 4: 195, 184, 135, 151, 159, 176, 96, 47, 63, 71, 88, 8
Pack 5: 191, 202, 116, 156, 173, 93, 166, 37, 24, 30, 17, 49
Pack 6: 185, 190, 156, 173, 93, 166, 144, 73, 90, RS9, 1, 74

Front right stack
Pack 1: 202, 190, 159, 176, 96, 169, 147, 3, 76, 54, 40, 33
Pack 2: 191, 197, 137, 153, 161, 178, 98, 65, 73, 90, 1, 74
Pack 3: 202, 190, 134, 150, 158, 175, 95, 39, 32, 19, 11, 26
Pack 4: 183, 134, 150, 158, 175, 95, 66, 83, 3, 76, 54, 40
Pack 5: 196, 133, 117, 104, 136, 152,  20, 12, 59, 67, 84, 4
Pack 6: 200, 171, 126, 113, 119, 106, 52, 38, 31, 18, 10, 25

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