Panini America‘s annual USA Baseball boxed set arrived in hobby shops today with a new inclusion inside.
As in the newest players ever.
New in 2015 Panini USA Baseball are autographs and memorabilia cards like those of Adam Crampton seen above. He was a member of the USA Baseball 14U squad this year. That’s the 14-and-under squad — do the math and you’ll figure out that the third-baseman was born sometime in the 2000s. (It’s May 24, 2001, to be precise, meaning he’s now a grizzled veteran and too old for that roster.)
Buzz knows many collectors like the earliest cards of players and Buzz is actually a long-time fan of USA cardboard because there’s an official affiliation for all players involved and some continuity to collecting in this area. Some of the biggest MLB names of the last 15-plus years have made their cardboard debut in USA Baseball releases, too.
But one has to wonder whether we need cards for somebody that young — someone in the high school class of 2019? (USA Baseball actually has a 12U National Team but that one hasn’t yet made it to cards.) The youngest member of the 14U roster this year was infielder-outfielder Dorian Gonzalez, who is likely a member of the high school graduating class of 2021. He’ll turn 13 next week as he was born on Dec. 31, 2002.
Yep, he’s in the set, too.
There’s no right or wrong answer to the too young question here — and it’s compelling to think that cards of potential big-leaguers could be had several years before they’re even potentially drafted (for the first time) out of high school. Or, maybe they go on to become college stars and get picked after a successful career — that could be nearly a decade from now. Or, maybe they just become kids who find successes in life away from baseball in the coming years.
What do you guys think about these inclusions in 2015 Panini USA Baseball? Tell us in our poll below or by leaving a comment.
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