The 2006 Topps Heritage baseball card set was met with mixed reviews among die hard card collectors, even Heritage enthusiasts. Some loved the authentic and nostalgic feel of the 2006 Topps Heritage set, while others felt that Topps missed the boat in their attempt and were perhaps a little too authentic with the washed out look of the colors. While the "feel" of the cards can be debated, the set does have a lot of great base cards and inserts for Heritage and vintage collectors.
For this set, Topps was making a throwback to their groundbreaking 1957 set. In that year, the modern baseball card was basically invented in its current form, a 2.5 inch x 3.5 inch card. Up through 1956, Topps had used a slightly larger card. The 1957 set was also the first Topps set to use real photographs for all of the players, where in the past most or all cards had been artistic renderings or airbrushed photos. The 2006 Topps Heritage baseball card set does its best to mimic the style and qualities of those '57 cards. In essence, the cards are all focused completely on a picture of the player. Some pictures are headshot, close ups, while others capture the player in simple poses. These include the true classics like a bat over the shoulder, or a glove at the side, or a fielding ready position pose. Some in-game shots of the players are used.
In the 2006 Topps Heritage set, the photographers and designers tried to match the feel of the '57 set not only with the photograph poses and card layout, but with the colors and tones used. The colors used here are supposed to be less "fake" or computer and digital imagery enhanced, and are supposed to be more natural and true to life. The purpose of the cards is not to make the players stand out unnaturally but to capture their essence as realistically as possible.
Within the set there are many relics, autographs and other inserts. The 15 card New Age Performers set, the 10 card Flashbacks set and the 10 card Then and Now set that have become staples of the Heritage sets are present in 2006. Other highlights from the 2006 Topps Heritage set include the "Flashbacks" seat relics cards, some autographed and some non-autographed. Game used jersey and bat "Clubhouse Collection Relics" with both autographed and non-autographed cards proved to be very popular as well. This is just a sampling of the many possibilities you can encounter when you open up a pack of these cards. If you're a fan of vintage baseball cards and you have never opened a pack of Topps Heritage cards, you are missing out.