Thursday, March 27, 2014

2014 JustCommons purchase #5: Hal Morris, part 2

Last Wednesday's post covered part 1 my JustCommons Hal Morris pickups spanning 1990-1994.  Today I'm back with post two of three, and this time we'll be looking at stuff from 1995 and 1996, right around the brand/set explosion:
Hal Morris 1995 Collector's Choice SE
Collector's Choice was a low-end, budget- and kid-friendly product.  SE ("Special Edition") was a parallel, more expensive version of Collector's Choice.  Why does it exist?  I dunno, but I do like the blue borders, so I grabbed a copy of Morris' card.
Hal Morris 1995 Finest
1995's Finest set is a definite improvement over the color explosion from '94.  I believe it's also the first Finest set to include the dreaded protective film.  Free your cards!  I'll be doing this with all of my PC Finest stuff soon.
Hal Morris 1995 Select
I've already said I like this set, so instead I'll ask if anyone would like to enlighten us on the patch featured on Hal's jersey in both photos?
Hal Morris 1995 Stadium Club
Hal Morris 1995 Stadium Club Virtual Reality
'95's Stadium Club set isn't at the top of my list thanks to the goofy logo in the upper-right and the annoying-for-some-reason team logo/name area, but the full-bleed photography is still great.  The Virtual Reality set is TSC's answer to flagship's Cyberstats, which attempted to project non-strike "what if?" stats.  Not an especially great parallel (if you can call it that), but them's the breaks.
Hal Morris 1995 Studio
The '95 Studio set design is often derided for its credit card motif, but I think it's kind of fun, even if it isn't the product's best effort.  It's kind of a fun way to get stats on the front that are usually reserved for the back, including birth date, month and year of debut, and a few counting stats.
Hal Morris 1995 Upper Deck
I've never attempted to put the set together, but '95 Upper Deck has one of the product's best, most understated designs.  The excellent photography is the focus, with the player's name, team, position, and Upper Deck logo not doing much to distract you from great shots like this one.
Hal Morris 1996 Leaf
File this one under "designs that don't scan well."  That's just what happens sometimes when you get all foil-y and reflective.  I'm still a fan, though!
Hal Morris 1996 Pinnacle Aficionado
I remember grabbing a pack of this product at Meijer way back around the time it came out.  Positive side-effect of collecting:  this set taught me what the word "aficionado" meant!
Hal Morris 1996 Score
This set features one of my favorite Score designs.  The clean, white border isn't overly large, the player and team name section doesn't take up too much real estate, and some of the photos like this one are fantastic.
Hal Morris 1996 Studio
Now there's a Studio design that IS near the top of my favorites!  For those that didn't like the various background motifs or the previous year's credit card look, this one comes with a nice portrait interspersed with an action scene.  And for some reason I like the design of the player's name and even the Studio logo.  Put it all together and it's a winner in my book.
Hal Morris 1996 Topps Gallery
This is a pretty nice card, even if it's not from what I consider one of Gallery's best designs, so that says a lot about the quality of that product.  It comes with a great swinging shot of Hal strongly in-focus, while the crowd behind him is blurred.
Hal Morris 1996 Topps Laser
I'm glad Morris was not a pitcher, because their cards feature the only design I really don't care for in Topps' one-and-done Laser set.  You can kind of see why they thought it might be a hit, but the high cost certainly didn't do them any favors.  Anyway, it's another cool Morris to add to the PC.
Hal Morris 1996 Zenith
Too bad Jose Bautista wasn't around for this design, which truly would have been a "Joey Bats" card.  The base set design is nice enough, but I'll always have a soft spot for '96 Zenith because of the amazing Mozaics set (which I showed off here), which actually includes a card featuring Morris along with fellow Wolverine Barry Larkin.

Today's 14 new cards give Hal a beefed-up PC total of 78!  As I mentioned, I have one more group of his cards to show off, but first I'll get back to a few other players.  Then it'll be on to this year's COMC scores.

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