Valentine’s Day 2018 LE Set

Our first set of Limited Edition cards debuted back in September of last year, where we released two Philadelphia legends in Mike Schmidt and Steve Carlton to celebrate our first official Clutch tournament. In October we celebrated Halloween with some more LE cards, now with special designs, nicknames, and a spook-tacular Strategy Card. This year for Valentine’s Day, we’re continuing to expand on the idea of the small Limited Edition “mini-set” by adding a Stadium Card and special variants.

New LE Format / Distribution

For this set, we’ve decided to try something a little different and hopefully more fun. This set will feature 4 cards sold in red blind packs. The packs will cost $14.99 each or free with orders $29.99 and over. We will be bringing back 2017 Strategy Sets, priced conveniently at $29.99 to coincide with this release.

So what’s the deal with blind packs? Well, we’ve decided to put in variants of the 2 players featured in the set: Pete Rose and Frank Viola. Each pack will include 1 version of Rose and 1 version of Viola, distributed as follows:
Standard: 55/70   |   Valentine’s Variant: 14/70   |   Special Valentine’s Variant: 1/70

The packs will be limited to 70 and will all include a “Big Red Machine” Stadium Card as well as a “Heartbreaker” Strategy Card. The variants are statistically identical—the difference is purely cosmetic. Packs will be completely random, so you could theoretically get 2 variants in 1 pack. I want to re-iterate that we’re not married to this idea and if it turns out to be unpopular, we’ll obviously re-evaluate it going forward. Here’s our thinking though: the holiday cards can be fun but someone might not necessarily want a Pete Rose with an actual rose on it over a “normal one.” The variants allow us to make [hopefully] everyone happy and give a chance for some people to score some extra-rare cards. Sales begin on 2/1 and will ship immediately.

The Cards

Alright so now that we’ve got that squared away, let’s talk about the cards themselves.

Pete Rose: I’m pretty sure everyone saw “Charlie Hustle” making it into this first Valentine’s Day set. With a last name like Rose and more hits than anyone to ever play the game, it was basically a no-brainer. 1973 was his MVP year as well as his highest WAR year by far—making it another easy pick. His card also features a special Rose-like stance.

Frank Viola: On the flip side, I don’t think anyone saw this one coming. Okay, neither did I until a few days ago. Viola could have made it into the set on his instrumental last name alone, but having a nickname like “Sweet Music” and a CY Young award in ’88 sealed the deal for us.

Big Red Machine: With Rose making his Clutch debut, and red being the theme of the holiday, this made too much sense. In the 8 seasons from 1970-1977, four different Cincinnati batters won the NL MVP award a total of 6 times. In this span they also amassed an incredible 34 All-Star selections. Most of these accolades came from Cincinnati’s “Great Eight” that led the “Big Red Machine” to dominate baseball’s 1970’s. This card is essentially a variant of the current Cincinnati Park, however instead of the bonus effect providing negation, it instead powers up even more when an MVP/AS is at the plate. Another interesting note: Riverfront Stadium did not feature any infield dirt, leading to a strange but unique ballpark diagram.

Heartbreaker: We went through a bunch of ideas but ultimately landed on a card that could lend itself to MVP/AS players which is clearly an underlying theme of this set. This new trigger allows you to play Heartbreaker after a tied advantage and turn the tables on the offense. You’ll also be able to draw 2 cards if your pitcher is an All-Star or MVP (oh hi Frank…).

Alright folks, so there you have it: the 2018 Valentine’s Day set. As always, we love to hear from you. Comment here or contact us on social media @clutchcards to let us know what you think about this set. Are you hoping for a variant or standard limited edition player? Will this new strat or stadium find it’s way into your deck? Remember: orders begin on February 1st!

Michael Bimonte

Co-Owner and Creative Director of Clutch. Current hockey/softball player and devoted Mets and NY Rangers fan. Made his first baseball card game nearly 10 years ago to play during study hall.

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