top of page

Has Topps Made "Chasing the Rainbow" more Difficult?

As many of you know, I supercollect Austin Hays. For those of you not familiar with the term “supercollect”, it typically means you try and collect each card released for a certain player, team, etc. My Hays collection has become pretty extensive over the years, with it currently taking two full two-row boxes, and will need to expand here shortly. I mark down everytime I get a new card for my Hays collection in a notebook, and cross them off as I go. All handwritten, and updated as Hays has new cards released. Would it be easier to do an electronic spreadsheet format? Probably. But the thrill of getting to cross off something from a list and watch it dwindle down as the scavenger hunt ensues, is one of my favorite parts of the hobby!

Releases Changing Over the Years

Each year, card companies try to find new innovative ways to add to the collecting experience. Recently this can be seen in 2024 Topps Series 1 baseball. The addition of new chases, inserts, parallels, have the collector coming back to enjoy a new experience. For me, these new innovations add a fun challenge to my collection.

In 2024 Topps Series 1 baseball, there are twenty-three different parallels to chase for the base-set (Not including Gold Mirror SSP and printing plates). This year, the additions include: Yellow Crackle /50, and the holiday base parallels of: Eggs, Rabbit, Flowers /50, Umbrella /10, Watering Can /5, and Roses 1/1. The “holiday base parallels” have received a mixed reaction from collectors, with many not understanding the choice of these new parallels. I personally enjoy the designs, but can get behind not understanding the intention behind this release. With that behind said, my 2024 Hays rainbow won’t be complete without them though!

2018 to 2024

Austin Hays had his first flagship release in 2018 as a rookie in 2018 Topps Series 1 baseball. With that, my chase for the rainbow got started. Now, six years later, I wanted to reflect on how vastly different my “chase for the rainbow” is now! 

In the 2018 release, there were eleven different parallels (Not including printing plates) to chase the complete rainbow. Most of those parallels still exist in today’s releases, but one has seen a change. The black parallel in 2018 was /67, and got up to a print run of /72 as of last year, but to my knowledge the parallel isn’t included in 2024. The two different releases don’t have much change, though 2024 has double the amount of possible parallels, only one lower numbered parallel has been introduced (Yellow Crackle) and the others are higher numbered or not at all. 

My Thoughts

I think the intention behind the addition of parallels is to make sure the collector can find hopefully something numbered to get excited about. If the numbers from 2018 were to exist now, numbered cards would be nearly impossible to pull, and would leave a great number of collectors disappointed in their rips. 

This personally doesn’t have much effect on my collecting. I enjoy the chase, and though the new parallels are a bit confusing and require more research, it adds to the fun. It adds to the chase. It also makes for quite a fun picture when the print run is all assembled. 


bottom of page