2021 Topps Heritage High Number Review

Heritage High Numbers is a continuation of the main Heritage release. In that way, it is reminiscent of the Topps Update release from the flagship series. The series includes players called up to the show and some high-profile veteran trades. So, without further ado, here is our 2021 Topps Heritage High Number review.

The series is called “High Numbers” because it numerically completes the set from the main Heritage release.  So, this year, the collection starts at #501, picking up where the original release left off.

Topps Heritage High Number Product History

In 2001, Topps showcased two new products: Topps Heritage and Bowman Heritage. They were both based on retro designs, typically tribute to a classic Topps design.

Unfortunately, the Bowman variation went the way of the Dodo in 2007. However, Topps Heritage has proven quite durable and is now a welcome staple in the baseball release schedule.

In fact, Topps Heritage developed enough of an audience to justify a spinoff. So in 2012, the company released the first version of the High Numbers line. It came as a 100 card boxed set, available only on the Topps website at the time.

That first set was partially an excuse to make a Bryce Harper card. The highly-touted prospect made his debut for the Nationals during the 2012 season. Other notable rookies included Yoenis Cespedes and Yu Darvish.

Topps has been releasing Heritage baseball since 2001 (look for 2001 boxes on eBay)

Advantages And Disadvantages Of Topps Heritage High Number 

Topps Heritage High Numbers shares the advantages and disadvantages of the main Heritage series. It is a fun product for vintage enthusiasts and set completists. The cards are attractive to nostalgia seekers, and they are always available at reasonable prices.

The main disadvantage is the lower value of the cards and wax. Generally speaking, both fetch less on the market than flagship and Topps Chrome. Another disadvantage is the derivative nature of the cards. Sure, we all like the classic designs. But there is something mildly depressing about seeing the exact same design reprised repeatedly.

2021 Topps Heritage High Number Review Of Release Formats

So far, the release has been released only in a hobby box format and blasters. I assume that will remain the case, as it was in 2020. Topps used to release hangers and mega boxes. But they were discontinued, most likely due to low sales numbers.

Hobby Box

  • 9 cards per pack
  • 24 packs per box
  • 1 autograph or relic card per box on average
  • Available on eBay for $75

Balsters

  • 72 cards per box
  • Available on eBay for $35

2021 Topps Heritage High Number Review Of The Checklist 

The set has 225 cards overall.

Sometimes, the base set includes cards not included in the original release. In this case, the High Numbers release includes the #216 Cavan Biggio card, which was missing due to an oversight.

2021 High Numbers boxes are on sale on eBay.

Rookie Class

We have already discussed the 2021 rookie class quite often on this website. Overall, we believe it is a good if unspectacular crop.

The main attraction in this set is probably Jonathan India, who did not appear in Series 1 and 2. The National League Rookie of the Year exceeded all expectations this year and seems set for a strong career. Whether he will be a legit star is an open question. My guess is no.

Jarred Kelenic is the opposite example. He was a highly-touted prospect but was sent down to the minors shortly after his debut. However, I believe in him (for whatever that is worth!)

Here are the rookies most likely to have value in this set. They are either top performers or have less common rookie cards. Ideally both:

  • Jonathan India
  • Alex Kirilloff
  • Trevor Rogers
  • Jarred Kelenic
  • Jake Cronenworth
  • Jazz Chisholm Jr.

Short Prints

One of the best-known features of Heritage High Numbers is its short prints. The set traditionally features short prints of the last 25 cards in the set.

Parallels

The black borders are a particularly good short print in Heritage High Numbers. There are only 50 copies of each. There are other things to chase, including chrome versions of 100 of the cards.

Chrome Versions

A 100-card set in total. It includes the following parallels:

  • Refractor /572
  • Red /372)
  • Black /72
  • Gold /5
  • Superfractor 1/1

2021 Topps Heritage High Number Review Of Variations

Heritage is known for its wide range of variations, and the High Numbers release is no exception. Here is a guide to the variations you can find in this release. Remember to always look on the back of the card to spot a variation. You can see them identified in the colored area right beneath the card number.

The set has similar variations to the ones found in 2021 Topps Heritage. They include the following:

  • Action Image
  • Team Name Color Swap
  • City Uniforms (formerly Throwbacks)
  • Nickname
  • Missing Stars

Action Image

One of the main characteristics of the Heritage release is its use of old-fashioned awkward poses for most of the pictures. However, many of the cards have an alternate pose, capturing the players in action. They usually look better and are less common, so they are a cool variation to pull.

501 Francisco Lindor
540 Akil Baddoo
541 Jonathan India
546 Alex Kirilloff
550 Kris Bryant
554 Paul DeJong
556 Buster Posey
558 Ozzie Albies
561 Yermin Mercedes
566 Manny Machado
569 Andres Gimenez
577 Victor Gonzalez
584 Jarred Kelenic
587 Gary Sanchez
598 Brailyn Marquez
616 Nolan Arenado
619 Ha-Seong Kim
624 Andrew Vaughn
627 Anthony Rendon
641 Jake Cronenworth
665 Jazz Chisholm Jr.
669 Blake Snell
686 Zach McKinstry
700 Xander Bogaerts
716 George Springer

Action variations are a nice break from the awkward poses (look for High Numbers Jonathan India cards on eBay)

Team Name Color Swap

Team names consist of two colors in the Heritage design. The Team Name Color Swap simply replaces one color with the other.

501 Francisco Lindor
540 Akil Baddoo
541 Jonathan India
546 Alex Kirilloff
550 Kris Bryant
554 Paul DeJong
556 Buster Posey
558 Ozzie Albies
561 Yermin Mercedes
566 Manny Machado
569 Andres Gimenez
577 Victor Gonzalez
584 Jarred Kelenic
587 Gary Sanchez
598 Brailyn Marquez
616 Nolan Arenado
619 Ha-Seong Kim
624 Andrew Vaughn
627 Anthony Rendon
641 Jake Cronenworth
665 Jazz Chisholm Jr.
668 Zach McKinstry
669 Blake Snell
700 Xander Bogaerts
716 George Springer

City Uniforms

In these variations, the regular team uniforms are replaced with vintage versions. The pictures come from  Turn Back the Clock Nights at the ballpark.

533 Jose Abreu
550 Kris Bryant
561 Yermin Mercedes
571 Nick Madrigal
576 Javier Baez
578 Bobby Dalbec
588 Sergio Alcantara
590 Eduardo Escobar
598 Anthony Rizzo
624 Andrew Vaughn
631 Brandon Crawford
645 Rafael Devers
665 Jazz Chisholm Jr.
697 Jesus Aguilar
700 Xander Bogaerts

Nickname

These cards display players with their nicknames on the front of the card instead of the familiar name.

501 Francisco Lindor
550 Kris Bryant
561 Yermin Mercedes
566 Manny Machado
627 Anthony Rendon
655 Trey Mancini
663 Randy Arozarena
669 Blake Snell
687 Albert Pujols
700 Xander Bogaerts

A Boomer card anyone? (look for more nickname cards on eBay)

Missing Stars

These variations have two stars under the team name. One under each corner.

501 Francisco Lindor
540 Akil Baddoo
546 Alex Kirilloff
550 Kris Bryant
556 Buster Posey
561 Yermin Mercedes
584 Jarred Kelenic
598 Brailyn Marquez
616 Nolan Arenado
624 Andrew Vaughn
665 Jazz Chisholm Jr.
716 George Springer

2021 Topps Heritage High Number Review Of Autos

Topps Heritage High Numbers is not a product for those looking for massive hits. Nonetheless, it does include a good auto list, and with some luck, you can hit a really good one. Most autos are from the Real One Autographs series’s signature (pardon the pun).

However, there is a second series included. It features the 1972 World Series Champion Oakland A’s.

Real One Autographs

These autos come in three forms:

  • Real One Autographs (in blue ink)
  • Real One Autographs Special Edition Red Ink /72
  • Dual Autos

The Real One Autographs list includes the following players:

ROA-AB Alex Bregman
ABA Akil Baddoo
AJA Aaron Judge
AK Alex Kirilloff
ALO Al Oliver
AM Andrew McCutchen
AP Albert Pujols
AS Ali Sanchez
AV Andrew Vaughn
BB Bert Blyleven
BMA Bill Mazeroski
BR Brooks Robinson
BRO Brent Rooker
CCH Chris Chambliss
CF Carlton Fisk
CJ Cristian Javier
CMA Casey Mize
CSC Clarke Schmidt
DB Dusty Baker
DC Daz Cameron
DK Dean Kremer
DW Devin Williams
EF Estevan Florial
FF Freddie Freeman
GCO Gerrit Cole
GPE Geraldo Perdomo
HSK Ha-Seong Kim
JA Jose Abreu
JI Jonathan India
JJ Jahmai Jones

ROA-JK Jim Kaat
JKE Jarred Kelenic
JM Juan Marichal
JO Jared Oliva
JP Jim Palmer
JS Juan Soto
JSA Juan Soto
JV Joey Votto
KB Kris Bubic
KI Kyle Isbel
MC Miguel Cabrera
MM Mickey Moniak
MTA Mike Trout
MY Miguel Yajure
OC Orlando Cepeda
PG Paul Goldschmidt
RA Ronald Acuña Jr.
RAR Randy Arozarena
RM Rafael Marchan
SC Steve Carlton
SM Shane McClanahan
SO Shohei Ohtani
TP Tony Perez
TT Taylor Trammell
WC Will Craig
XB Xander Bogaerts
YA Yordan Alvarez
YME Yermin Mercedes
ZM Zach McKinstry

Dual Autos

RODA-BK Jim Kaat / Bert Blyleven
BO Blue Moon Odom / Vida Blue
CB Byron Buxton / Rod Carew
CH Bryce Harper / Steve Carlton
JT Gleyber Torres / Aaron Judge
PR Brooks Robinson / Jim Palmer
TP Albert Pujols / Mike Trout

Why settle for one Hall of Famer? (get more Heritage dual autos on eBay)

2021 Topps Heritage High Number Review Of Relic Cards

The memorabilia-oriented cards in Heritage are part of the Clubhouse Collection theme.

You can find these cards in relic only versions in the following variations:

  • Gold /99
  • Dual /72
  • Triple /25
  • Quad /10
  • Patch 1/1

CC-AB Alec Bohm
ABA Akil Baddoo
AJ Aaron Judge
AK Alex Kirilloff
AM Andrew McCutchen
AR Anthony Rizzo
BB Bo Bichette
BD Bobby Dalbec
BH Bryce Harper
BL Brandon Lowe
BS Brady Singer
CB Cavan Biggio
CBR Cody Bellinger
CC Carlos Correa
CK Clayton Kershaw
CMZ Casey Mize
CS Corey Seager
CY Christian Yelich
DC Dylan Carlson
DV Daulton Varsho

FT Fernando Tatis Jr.
GS Giancarlo Stanton
GSR George Springer
GT Gleyber Torres
HR Hyun-Jin Ryu
JA Jose Abreu
JA Jonathan India
JBT Joey Bart
JBZ Javier Baez
JD Josh Donaldson
JK Jarred Kelenic
JM J.D. Martinez
JP Joc Pederson
JR Jose Ramirez
JS Juan Soto
JV Justin Verlander
JVO Joey Votto
KB Kris Bryant
KH Keston Hiura
KS Kyle Schwarber

LG Luis Garcia
MB Mookie Betts
MCA Miguel Cabrera
MH Monte Harrison
MK Max Kepler
MM Manny Machado
MT Mike Trout
MY Mike Yastrzemski
NP Nate Pearson
NS Nick Senzel
PA Pete Alonso
PG Paul Goldschmidt
RD Rafael Devers
RH Rhys Hoskins
RM Ryan Mountcastle
SH Sam Huff
TG Trent Grisham
TS Trevor Story
TT Trea Turner
VG Victor Gonzalez
VGJ Vladimir Guerrero Jr.
WC Willi Castro
WCS Willson Contreras

The Clubhouse Collection has some incredible relics (look for them on eBay)

There are also autographed memorabilia cards:

  • Clubhouse Collection Autograph Relics /25 or less
  • Dual Autograph Relics /10

Here is a list of the dual auto relics:

CCD-AA Hank Aaron / Ronald Acuña Jr. /72
BR Anthony Rizzo / Kris Bryant /72
BV Joey Votto / Johnny Bench /72
CS Roberto Clemente / Willie Stargell /72
JT Aaron Judge / Gleyber Torres /72
MT Manny Machado / Fernando Tatis Jr. /72

Clubhouse Collection Quad Relics

These relic cards also come in a 1/1 patch version.

CCQ-ABCV Jose Altuve / Justin Verlander / Carlos Correa / Alex Bregman /10
AGST Ronald Acuña Jr. / Vladimir Guerrero Jr. / Juan Soto / Fernando Tatis Jr. /10
BCMP Johnny Bench / Dave Concepcion / Joe Morgan / Tony Pérez /10
FYBD Rafael Devers / Carlton Fisk / Carl Yastrzemski / Xander Bogaerts /10
MSLD Francisco Lindor / Willie Mays / Jacob deGrom / Tom Seaver /10
SHHM Rhys Hoskins / Mike Schmidt / Bryce Harper / Andrew McCutchen /10

Clubhouse Collection Triple Relics

These relic cards also come in a 1/1 patch version.

CCT-AAF Ronald Acuña Jr. / Ozzie Albies / Freddie Freeman /25
BBG Vladimir Guerrero Jr. / Bo Bichette / Cavan Biggio /25
BBP Mookie Betts / Cody Bellinger / Albert Pujols /25
BSB Ryne Sandberg / Javier Baez / Ernie Banks /25
GMT Manny Machado / Fernando Tatis Jr. / Tony Gwynn /25
KPM Joe Mauer / Harmon Killebrew / Kirby Puckett /25
SSS Juan Soto / Max Scherzer / Stephen Strasburg /25

1972 Themed Inserts

Since the 2021 Heritage series was modeled on the 1972 Topps design, some cards have themes based on that year. They include:

1972 World Series Highlights

Includes great moments from the outstanding World Series, which saw the Oakland A’s beat the Cincinnati Reds in 7 games.

72WS-1 Gene Tenace
2 Vida Blue
3 Catfish Hunter
4 Joe Rudi
5 Tony Pérez
6 Angel Mangual
7 Joe Morgan
8 Johnny Bench
9 Sal Bando
10 Rollie Fingers

Clemente 3,000

This insert celebrates the legendary outfielder while highlighting his 3,000 career hits milestone reached that year.

C3K-1 Roberto Clemente
C3K-2 Roberto Clemente
C3K-3 Roberto Clemente
C3K-4 Roberto Clemente
C3K-5 Roberto Clemente
C3K-6 Roberto Clemente
C3K-7 Roberto Clemente
C3K-8 Roberto Clemente
C3K-9 Roberto Clemente
C3K-10 Roberto Clemente
C3K-11 Roberto Clemente
C3K-12 Roberto Clemente
C3K-13 Roberto Clemente
C3K-14 Roberto Clemente
C3K-15 Roberto Clemente

1972 Baseball Cut Signatures

If you are fortunate, you can hit these exclusive 1/1’s.

72BB-BG Bob Gibson 1/1
72BB-BK Bowie Kuhn 1/1
72BB-CF Curt Flood 1/1
72BB-EW Early Wynn 1/1
72BB-GH Gil Hodges 1/1
72BB-HA Hank Aaron 1/1
72BB-JR Jackie Robinson 1/1
72BB-LB Lou Brock 1/1
72BB-RC Roberto Clemente 1/1
72BB-YB Yogi Berra 1/1

2021 Topps Heritage High Number Review Of Value

No one buys Heritage High Numbers to make big money flipping. In general, Heritage does not resell for much. But still, what is the value of these cards? Let’s take a look at both singles and wax.

Wax

Hobby boxes for Heritage High Numbers are about as cheap as they come. So, there is no significant risk in buying one. But how do they resell over time?

2017 Hobby Box $192
2018 Hobby Box $425
2019 Hobby Box $225
2020 Hobby Box $90

The answer: they resell surprisingly well! It appears that because there are not too many of them around, and they guarantee an auto, the boxes are remarkably popular. If so, there is zero risk to buying one of these babies and putting them on the shelf. You may not make a ton, but you could double or quadruple your initial investment.

Singles

The vast majority of Heritage cards are just about worthless. However, there are rookie hits in these boxes. Let’s see how they hold value. All cards are PSA 10.

2017 Cody Bellinger Red Ink Auto /68 $1,007
2018 Shohei Ohtani $219
2019 Vlad Guerrero (batting pose) $155

While the boxes surprised me with their resale value, the singles are surprisingly lacking in value. For example, I had difficulty finding any that sold for over $1,000.

Not many Heritage High Numbers cards resell well. But this one sure does. (look for Cody Bellinger autos on eBay)

Bottomline Of The 2021 Topps Heritage High Number Review

Heritage High Numbers is known as a fun buy for collectors and completists. It is not a notable investment item. However, the hobby boxes are surprisingly strong resold items. You can buy two for the price of a Bowman hobby box (or four for the cost of most basketball releases). So why not rip one and keep the other?

Shaiel Ben-Ephraim

Shaiel Ben-Ephraim

Shaiel Ben-Ephraim is a former history and political science professor at UCLA. He has a PhD from the University of Calgary. Shai also worked as a diplomat and journalist on three continents.


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