Friday, October 11, 2013

I lived

Welcome to Hometown, IL. It is a very real place. One mile long and half a mile wide. It's sandwiched between the SW border of Chicago and the suburb of Oak Lawn. When I was born almost 5 decades ago, my family had a house in Hometown. My grand parents lived in Hometown over 50 years. Hometown is nothing but duplexes - two small houses that share a common wall. The idea was small, inexpensive houses for the soldiers coming home after WW2.

When I was 14 months old, we moved out of our Hometown house to a bigger place in Alsip. But many years later, my mom moved back and currently lives there. Both my grandparents passed away in their Hometown house. The tornado in '67 blew through Hometown, ripping off roofs. It leaped over my grandparent's home and hit the house two down from them. Somewhere there are 8mm films of the aftermath.

Panini's latest baseball product is Hometown Heroes. I know I rail about the lack of license on some on Panini's products, but I am enjoying this set. The bright colors and the fun design works when the team names and logos are shopped out. How fun is this?

Chipboard stock, but colorful as all get up. They shop the hell out of these, so you have cards like...


But I enjoy the layout of the cards enough that the lack of logos does not bother me like other cards. I did some digging - here is a scan of all the Panini products I have opened over the past couple years.

I like Coopertown a lot, and they use the card layout to hide some things. Golden Age is a fun set, but the shopping works like it does in Hometown Heroes. Compare that shop to the look of Prizm and Pinnacle. I think the lack of logo works when the card design feels older. But that is just me. HH also has some fun insert sets.

3D disks are the "mini" in the packs. Something so 80's about the lensticular cards.

Rivalry - this is a cool idea. Same guy but with different teams. Why has no one done this before?

Curtain Call is fun as well. Focusing on recent retirees and a big moment in their career. I haven't pulled any of the other inserts I have seen (Nickname or Left Their Mark), but maybe in another pack.

The set also boasts some nice autographs and I think most are on card. In my 5 jumbos, I have pulled two.

Nice scribble from Keith Moreland. This is already on it's way to Mark with Once A Cub.

Pulled this nice Lo Duca today. Not too shabby.

I am liking this set. And no, Panini is not paying me for this post, though they are free to send me a box if they like. I won't complain. I'm hoping to find a lot of these in dime boxes. It's a pretty big set (330 cards I think), so set building a dime at a time would not cause strife in my current hometown.


  1. Small world...I was born at Christ Community Hospital in 1961 and lived at 8825 S Kostner in Hometown until we moved to Oak Lawn in 1965. I was in Kindergarten in '67 but have very vivid memories of the tornado. My grandparents also lived in Hometown, on 89th Place, until they died.

  2. I agree, the older players look better than newer guys. And who, outside of Milwaukee, would have thought we'd have 2013 Teddy Higuera cards?

    Topps did those Super Veteran cards in the early 80's. That's pretty close to the Rivalry cards, I think. And I think they did and Then & Now in the early 00's. I kind of like how Panini did the orange/sepia look for the Giants side and blue tint for the Dodgers side. I'd be curious to see others in that set if they did the same thing.

  3. I really like Panini's Hometown Heroes design. It's just a shame there aren't logos. I also like their Hometown Signatures cards. I might have to chase a few of these.