May 18, 2010

What made 2010 Bowman so popular?

2010 Bowman had amazing hype. The popularity of it surpassed anything I thought it would, but what made this product so popular this year?

1. The prospect hype
Stephen Strasburg led a huge group of prospects and rookies for the product. His superfractor is on eBay for $20,000 BIN/OBO and 30 declined offers (ebay link). This set is not only about Strasburg but Ackley, Stubbs, Teheran and others.

2. Lack of product
Topps flagship, Finest and Chicle were all released before Bowman, but this is the first set that has seemingly gotten people very excited. There has not been a lot of product out there because of the license exclusive. Collectors wanted to be excited about something and this certainly did it.

3. Resell value
I think with the great names in the set, the resell value was huge on this product. Collectors, who also sells cards, knew they could get their money back and more by busting cases. A few good refractors could definitely net some serious cash. Bundling a lot of Strasburg base cards, still brought some money.

With Bowman going crazy the way it did, what's the next set that will be big? Topps Chrome? Bowman Chrome? Any guesses?


  1. Either Bowman Chrome or Bowman Draft Picks. Bowman products, especially Chrome always have hype because they could contain early cards of future Hall of Famers.

    That said, it's been a long time since I've seen a product as hyped as 2010 Bowman.

  2. sooz - #1 on your list: Hype, spelled Strasburg.

    With Stras, Harper, Ackley and the first appearance of USA chrome cards, NO bowman Chrome product has ever been this hot.

    The only product to ever get this hot, that I can think of, was 2001 (I believe it was 2001) SP Legendary Cuts.

  3. I think that #2 on your list has a lot to do with it. This also is the first major "regular" release since Upper Deck's MLB was shut down. A lot of the 2010 product that UD did manage to get out has finished making its way out through the vendors, making the appearance of a product shortage even more pronounced.

    Chicle and Heritage are sets basically premised on gimmicks, and so although those may scratch the itch, it's hard to get excited long term about contemporary cards with retro designs (yet again).

    Speaking of gimmicks, Bowman also seems to be a reasonably straightforward set, with built-in player-driven demand, and rational inserts and parallels. I think that there's some background relief in not worrying about pulling presidents, squirrels, former mayors, logo switcheroos, stupid spellings, and fake players that would pollute this set like base and Heritage.

    It's also just timing. On top of the lack of UD product, the first cards of the season (like flagship Topps) appear in December or January. Any buzziness has been thoroughly forgotten by the time the season starts. Now that it's May, baseball interest should be starting to peak for the year, and Bowman is literally the right product at the right time with the right consistency.