I finally cashed in some points and splurged on some new 2013's at justcommons. Ginter Reds: done. Platinum Reds: done. Let's check out the Reds goodness from Allen & Ginter's base set, mmmkay?
First card of the set: Johnny Bench. No question he's making the set every year. On the design, I think the border is nice, the script is nice, and the painting-style photography is nice (I'm sure there's an actual name for it, I just don't know it). I don't care for the watercolor-like splash behind the players. A&G used this before, and it was novel then, but I'm not too excited that they went back to it.
First of two sideways cards of the Reds set is Joey Votto. I like the look of a paint brush washing away the white to expose some of the background of the action. It's a bit of an awkward position Votto is caught in, and it's framed poorly, but it's redeemed thanks to the GIANT BANANA. I don't think bananas are terribly prevalent in baseball cards. But dangit, here's a nice big one.
While not EXACTLY the same as the poses on Frank Robinson's 1964 and 1965 Topps cards, it's only noticeably different after inspection. So while it looks like Topps wasn't recycling Reds photos too much in this set, they're still knocking on the door.
Best lookin Red of the set is this Bronson Arroyo. The only other sideways card, again showing the brushed-and-exposed background. It showcases Arroyo's exaggerated delivery quite nicely.
You know The Cuban Missile is making this set. While not as insanely dominant as last year, when he's on fire, there's no reliever more exciting.
Mike Leake has been fantastic this year. I had given up on him, honestly, and he definitely showed me never to lose faith in the Redlegs. Mea culpa.
And finally, Johnny Cueto, in a very unflattering photo. Neck, anyone?
If you're keeping score, that's FOURTEEN Reds in the 300-card base set that includes non-baseball players as well. Hard not to feel good about that. There are also TWO MORE Reds in the 50-card short-print series plus six Reds in the Across the Years insert set, which I have and am saving for another day. So much Reds goodness. Sudo love the Ginter. Go Reds.