Wednesday, March 5, 2014

2003 Upper Deck Vintage #294 Marlon Byrd

Blue Jays 5, Phillies 3
Spring Training Game 7 – Tuesday Night, March 4th in Clearwater
Record – 1-6

One Sentence Summary:  The Phillies dropped another game, losing a rare spring training night game to the Blue Jays, 5-3.

What Happened:  Starting pitcher Cliff Lee had a decent outing, allowing just a run on three hits in his three innings of work.  Marlon Byrd hit his first home run of the spring with a two-run shot in the third off Blue Jays pitcher R.A. Dickey.

Featured Card:  We're getting closer to the release of 2014 Topps Heritage, and I was excited to see that Byrd was featured in the faux-Heritage set, 2003 Upper Deck Vintage.  Unfortunately, the Byrd card from the set doesn't contain the familiar pennant motif, but rather a different vintage-ish look.  I had already pulled out my 2003 Phillies binder to search for the card, so I thought I'd feature it anyway.

According to the official 2014 Topps Heritage checklist, Byrd is #48 in the set and it will be his first Phillies card since 2005.


Matthew Appleton said...

Actually, depending on how you feel about the Panini cards, Panini just beat Topps to the punch. Marlon Byrd has a Phillies card in 2014 Donruss.

(This is Matthew over at 14,000 Phillies -- OpenID is having issues again.)

Steve F. said...

Matthew, after seeing your February 28 post with the 2003 UD Vintage cards, I decided to add the Phils cards from the set to an order I was about to place with Beckett Marketplace. I collected UD Vintage in 2001 (ripoff of 1963 Topps) and 2002 (ripoff of 1971 Topps) but not in 2003, so I hadn't seen these before. Anyway, again a complete ripoff of Topps, but still nice-looking cards. I wonder whether actions like that helped precipitate the MLB decision to yank their license. Well, MLB, you've made your point--now let's get competition back.

But I digress. What I wanted to say was that, IMHO, Upper Deck screwed up with these "special" cards like the Byrd one that bear no resemblance to the rest of the set or the 1965 Topps set. At the least they should have modeled them after the World Series cards in the set, all of which showed action scenes and had a description on the card of what was going on.

Matthew Appleton said...

If I recall correctly, the specials were issued months after the original series that resembled '65 Topps. If I had to guess, Topps was getting tired of Upper Deck ripping them off and made some sort of legal threat that made them back-off. I say this because the 2004 Vintage design didn't look anything like on old Topps design (it was based on the 1954 Red Heart Dog Food set), and Upper Deck didn't attempt such blatant thievery again until they bought the rights to the O-Pee-Chee name in the hopes it would let them steal from old Topps designs again. (See the backs of the 2009 Upper Deck Upper Deck O-Pee-Chee Preview 1977 card.)

Jim said...

Matthew - Yep, I was pleased to see that Byrd had made the 2014 Donruss checklist and FWIW (at least among us collectors) that card will mark his official return to Phillies cardboard.

And it amazes me that Upper Deck couldn't hire a good graphic designer to come up with an original vintage design. They did a nice job with the 1994 Upper Deck All-Time Greats set, but then they just got lazy.