Something a little odd has been going on lately and I think I like it. In the past, BBM's website has typically been much later in announcing new sets than the card shop sites like Discount Niki and Hot Box. But in the last week or so, new sets have been popping up on BBM's website first - in fact as I write this, one of the four new BBM sets I'm going to mention isn't on Discount Niki yet. I'm not sure what's changed but I'm pleased that BBM appears to be making more of an effort to keep their web page up to date than they have in the past.
Anyway, on with the new set announcements...
- This year's version of BBM's Icons box set will be released in late March (Niki says on March 24th) and will be entitled "Icons - Japan Pride". There will be 36 cards in the base set which will break down to three per team. I think the top 2016 draft pick for each team will be one of the three players along with players who are participating in the WBC (although I'm not quite sure about that last part). In addition to the base set, the box will also include one "special" card that could be a die-cut card, a facsimile autographed card or a real autographed card.
- BBM's first team box set will also be released in late March and is for the Fighters. The "Hokkaido Nippon-Ham Fighters Premium" set will contain 29 cards - a 27 card base set, an insert card and a "special" insert card. It looks like the insert card will be one of two "2016 MVP" cards of Shohei Ohtani - I assume one shows him pitching and the other shows him hitting. The "special" insert card appears to be an autograph card. I'm not sure I'm understanding the translation correctly but it appear that the autographed cards will include players who are not in the base set. The MSRP on the set is a tidy 10,000 yen (roughly $100).
- BBM's first two pack based team sets have been announced. BBM's website says that the Swallows and Eagles team sets will be out in early April although Niki has the Swallows set coming out on March 30th and the Eagles set coming out the next day. Both sets will have 81 cards in their base sets, 24 insert cards in various sets and a wide variety of autograph cards. There's not a lot of detail on the Swallows set but the Eagles base set will have 66 cards for the manager and players, a three card "Newcomer" subset, a three card "Great Promise" subset and a nine card "Main Players" subset. The Eagles insert cards will break down into six three card sets ("Starting Pitchers", "Relief Pitchers", "Hits Production Machines", "Scoring Sources", "Youngsters Of Expectations" and "Reputable Veterans") and one six card "Phantom" subset. The Swallows set also has an insert set called "Phantom" - I don't know what this is but BBM appears to be saying that it is a popular super rare insert. Guess we'll find out at the end of the month.
- In addition to the new BBM sets there's been another "Trading mini colored paper"team based set announced by Hits - this time it's for the Carp. Like the other three that have been announced, this one appears to feature just eight players. It will be released on April 22nd.