Review: 2020 Topps Tribute

  1. Card Design:

Topps Tribute is normally a “filler” in the releases by the company. Collectors and chasers will gravitate to it, but it is not a destination product like Series One or Heritage. It fills a void in the calendar in between the more popular releases. With the pandemic going on, it takes a more prominent role for all in the hobby desperate for a new product. Still it a very sharp design. It is bright with a large player picture covering most of the card front. The border is a combination of a lighter and darker green. The window with the photo has the Tribute logo in the top left. The player name and team are at the bottom of the window with a dark background and the player position is below that over a white and red background. The card back has the same color scheme without a photo. The player name, team and position move to the top of the window and the window itself features bulleted highlights of last season. 

Score 4.2/5.0

  1. Checklist Review

Tribute’s base set consists of 90 cards. Like many of Topps’ not typical releases, it consists of a combination of today’s stars along with those from yesteryear. Current stars include Trout, Ohtani, Torres, Alonso, Judge, Yelich, Harper, Vlad, Acuna, Bellinger, Soto and Tatis. Those from the past include the Babe, Koufax, Griffey, Brett, Yaz, Gwynn, Rickey Henderson, Clemente, Ted Williams, Jackie Robinson, Reggie Jackson, Mattingly, Cobb, Gehrig, Mays, Ripken and Aaron. This is not a prospector’s release because there are no cards with the RC designation. There is a decent amount of Parallels to chase.

Score 3.75/5.0

  1. Collectability

Under normal circumstances, Tribute would not check many collector’s boxes. But these are not normal times and with collectors scrambling to whet their appetite in any way possible, Tribute jumps a few notches. It is a nice-looking set with the typical chases of Parallels, Inserts, Autos and Relics present to get the breakers and pack rippers going.

Score 3.6/5.0

  1. Favorite Parallel/Insert Set

With a smaller base set of many of the releases translates into a smaller group of Parallels available to chase. Those include Green (numbered to 99), Purple (numbered to 50), Red (numbered to 10) and Black (1/1). Inserts are slim too with one set available but since it is 2020 Rookies, it does check the prospector’s box. It is a 10-card set numbered to 450 with the aforementioned Parallels. Look for Aquino, Puk, Bichette, McKay, Cease, Lux, Luzardo, Lewis, Hoerner and Alvarez.

Score 3.4/5.0

  1. Autos/Relics

Pickings may have been slim in the previous categories, but Tribute catches up on the hits in both the Autos and Relics. Autos pays tribute to past and present greats with six different sets: Tribute to Great Hitters (24 cards numbered to 99 or less with Parallels), Franchise Best (34 cards numbered to 99 or less with Parallels), Tribute Autos (90 cards numbered to 199 or less with Parallels), League Inauguration (12 cards numbered to 99 or less with Parallels), Iconic Perspectives (48 cards numbered to 99 or less with Parallels) and Tribute Tandem Book Card (8 cards featuring two players numbered to 25 with Parallels). As for Relics, there are sets like Stamp of Approval (41 cards numbered to 150 with Parallels), Milestone Relics (6 cards numbered to 10), Dual Relics (17 cards numbered to 150 with Parallels), Triple Relics (50 cards numbered to 150 with Parallels) and Dual Relics Two Player (27 cards numbered to 150 with Parallels). There is also a good collection combining Autos and Relics: Auto Patches (18 cards numbered to 50 with Parallels), Prime Patch Auto Relics (39 cards) and Milestone Relic Autos (4 cards all numbered 1/1).

Score 4.25/5.0

  1. Overall

Tribute hit the market just in time before everything including the card printing presses shut down. That timing increases the awareness and thus, the collectability of Tribute. It has a sharp look and rests more on the premium product scale than on the other end of the spectrum. If you can get your hands on it, please do. I don’t think you will be disappointed. 

Overall Score 3.84/5.0

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