For baseball card collectors, the game changed in 2006. New licensing agreements meant that official rookie cards could only be made after a player made their major league debut. But that didn’t stop Topps from getting creative.
2006 Bowman Chrome Baseball keeps the prospect cards, only as a part of a separate insert set instead. The prospect cards carry the same design as the regular Bowman Chrome cards, however they are only licensed by Major League Baseball. The young players are still pictured in their major league uniforms and while they aren’t official rookie cards, they remain highly collectible on the secondary market. Key prospect cards in the set include Pablo Sandoval, Yovani Gallardo, Jeremy Hellickson and Cameron Maybin. Autographed Bowman Chrome Prospects feature Justin Upton, Alex Gordon, Matt Garza and Jon Lester.
The 2006 Bowman Chrome Baseball set has 224 cards, including five autographs. The Prospect insert cards are numbered BC111 through BC247. Cards BC221 to BC247 are all autographs, which combined to fall one per hobby box. The first 110 Chrome Prospect cards were included in 2011 Bowman Baseball.
The change in the MLBPA’s rookie card definitions make for further confusion as players with official rookie cards in sets from earlier years are classified as rookies once again. An example of this is Prince Fielder. Although his autograph is one of the top cards in 2006 Bowman Chrome Baseball, it’s not a true rookie. He appeared in several fully licensed sets in 2005. Others with players with rookies in earlier sets include Jonathan Papelbon, James Loney, Conor Jackson, Cole Hamels, Justin Verlander and Hanley Ramirez. In fact, the only official rookie cards in 2006 Bowman Chrome Baseball are Jeremy Accardo, Alay Soler, Kenji Johjima and Craig Hansen.
2006 Bowman Chrome Baseball hobby boxes come with 18 packs of four cards.
All Refractor types were made for both base and Prospect cards.
2005 Bowman Chrome Baseball is a landmark issue that set the standard for the brand going forward. With a deep rookie checklist and the introduction of first-year one-of-one parallels, 2005 Bowman Chrome Baseball is one of the best sets of the decade.
Leading the way are autographed rookie cards of Justin Verlander and Matt Kemp. This is the only first-year autograph for Kemp (who is listed by his full first name of Matthew), making it an important card to track down as the slugger continues to emerge as one of the game’s best. While Verlander does have several premium rookies that are worth more, the 2005 Bowman Chrome Baseball card is still available at a more accessible price tag while remaining extremely desirable thanks to the set’s brand recognition. The other big autographed rookie card is Billy Butler. Unsigned rookies in the set include Russell Martin, Ian Kinsler and Jair Jurrjens.
Because many of the rookies in this set show up again in Bowman Chrome Draft, collectors need to be careful about checking the numbers. Bowman Chrome Draft card numbers start with the prefix BDP. For players appearing in both sets, only the first 2005 Bowman Chrome Baseball card is considered a true rookie. Both Verlander and Martin fall into this category.
Not only did refractor rainbows grow with the debut of rare Red Refractors numbered to five copies, Printing Plates and one-of-one Superfractors, but collectors were introduced to a new level of ultra high-end prospecting. Superfractors in particular represent the modern benchmark for the greatest rookie of a given player.
Alex Rodriguez is highlighted with his own insert set that made cards for the years he wasn’t with Topps (1994-1997). A-Rod Throwback cards are inserted 1:9 pack. Parallels for the insert set include Refractors (/499), X-Fractors (/99) and Superfractors (/1). Rodriguez also signed 50 copies of the 1996 card and 99 copies of the 1997 version.
The 353-card 2005 Bowman Chrome Baseball set is broken down as follows: 140 veterans (#1-140), 25 young stars (141-165), 165 rookies (166-330) and 23 autographed rookies (331-353). One autographed rookie can be found in every hobby box.
Hobby boxes hold 18 packs of four cards.
Article source: http://www.cardboardconnection.com/2005-bowman-chrome-baseball
2002 Bowman Chrome Baseball is a strong follow-up to the classic set from 2001. Another stellar rookie card crop, including autographs from a pair of baseball’s biggest names, lead the way. Both David Wright and Joe Mauer have signed rookies in the set, which have become some of the most sought after in the modern hobby. Other key rookie cards in 2002 Bowman Chrome Baseball include Jose Bautista and Rich Harden.
Building a complete set of 2002 Bowman Chrome Baseball is a challenge. Inserted one per hobby box, there are 20 autographs to chase down, most of which are true rookie cards. The set also has a ton of short prints, which were inserted 1:3 packs.
2002 Bowman Chrome hobby boxes have 18 packs of four cards. They include a box topper redemption for one uncirculated rookie card from ThePit.com. Each rookie has 350 uncirculated cards and ten copies for each autograph. The redemptions have long since expired.
Inserts are fairly straight-forward and revolve primarily around refractor parallels. Basic refractors aren’t numbered, but short prints are serial numbered /500. Besides basic refractors, collectors can also chase X-Fractors (/250) and Gold Refractors (/50). The only other inserts are Rookie Reprints (20 cards, 1:6), which take basic Bowman cards from the past and recreated them on chromium foil. The Rookie Reprints are also paralleled as refractors (1:18).
Article source: http://www.cardboardconnection.com/2002-bowman-chrome-baseball