Buzz Break: 2016 Topps Strata baseball cards

16ttpstrataBBFrom time to time, Buzz will break a box of something and post the results here. Like this and want to see more? Or maybe there’s a box you’d want to see busted? Send Buzz an email at

The box: 2016 Topps Strata baseball cards (hobby box)
Where to buy:

Packs per box: 1
Cards per pack: 2
Cards in this box: 2
Base (autograph) set completion: 
1 of 35 (3 percent)
Duplicates: 0


Autographs/Memorabilia: 2
Strata Autographs (1) 
– Aaron Nola
Clearly Authentic Relics Blue (1) 
– Jake Arrieta (/99)

What’s Buzz-worthy: We all know that a brand like Strata is all about chasing big hits — and the time it takes to open a box, well, that’s a smaller amount of time than about anything in the hobby. This is a wham, bam it’s over kind of break that will either leave you feeling good about the results or leave you stunned wondering what just happened. … This box is probably more in the middle as it included a pair of pitchers and the Clearly Authentic Relic’s code number offers some fun, allowing one to look up info on the game when the piece was used. … And that’s where this box gets interesting. The Arrieta turns out to be a pair of game-used pants from a Cubs-Royals game on May 5, 2015 — well, that’s what the hologram’s info says over on the MLB Authentication site. However, the teams didn’t play that day. The original hologram number of the pants (HZ 633725) that was attached to the new hologram number (JB 288151) description sets the record straight on the error. It was a game on May 31. Arrieta didn’t play in that one, though, as he pitched two days earlier. The pants are game-used but some collectors will certainly question them (just like what happens with many un-serial-numbered Relics) but the extra effort there is worth it for some fans’ wants. … Overall, this box can be topped by other boxes out there, though the brand itself might be helped if there was just one unsigned basic card or parallel in the box to make it feel like there is one more variable to be found here than just, you know, the hits. Overall, though, these are well-crafted cards that are worth a look — especially if they have a discounted box price.

Product Grade: B
Box Grade:
Fun Grade: B-

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