Friday, May 28, 2010

If 1993 Topps Finest Refractors Were Serially Numbered...

...what do you think the print run on each card would have been?

I'm just putting this out there. From my understanding, refractors came one per box. I believe that the base set contains 199 cards. Putting this in the perspective of the times, stuff like Donruss Elite was numbered to 2500 or so (I think), but the print runs were so high that there are probably still literally warehouses full of unopened 1991/1992 Donruss out there.

As a collector in the waning years of my golden age of collecting, I can't recall seeing 1993 Finest anywhere. I do recall guys in stores opening up packs of Flair (of course being oh-so-careful by using a boxcutter), but no Finest. I suppose if we could find out the number of cases produced, multiply that by the number of boxes per case, then divide that by 199, we would have our answer. Perhaps this has been addressed before, but it's fresh in my mind now because of the Yount refractor from this week.

Or perhaps I'm just searching for answers in life... like the reasoning behind any Ivan Calderon card selling for more than $12 (which one was going for last night when I checked on eBay). The sound of that transaction is not unlike the sound of one hand clapping.


Teddy Dziuba said...

My father and I bought a boatload of 1993 Finest when it came out, one $20 pack at a time. Our biggest pulls were several Piazza rookies and refractors of Travis Fryman, Cecil Fielder and Daryl Strawberry.

I'm not positive, but if I vaguely recall the print run on the refractors being 243 or 247 (not sure why those numbers stick out in my mind), which for 1993 was insane, hence the appeal/allure

dayf said...

The official unofficial refractor print run is 241 copies each. I think the guy who calculated the exact age of the earth at 6006 years old worked out the refractor run once he was finished. 241 total seemed like a minuscule amount of cards back then, today its an ungodly amount for a parallel set. If there were 241 Strasburg Superfractors, they'd cost about three bucks a pop.

Chris Harris said...

When the first edition of Finest was about to be released, Topps announced a production run of only 4000, six-box cases. Each box had 18 packs and the refractors were seeded 1:9/packs.

That means each case yielded 12 refractors, and a grand total of 48,000 refractors were printed. Assuming that the refractors for all 199 players were produced in equal quantities, divide 48,000 by 199 and you get 241.21.

There are 241 copies of each refractor in 1993 Finest Baseball. QED.