Review: 2012 Panini National Treasures

OK, for starters I DID try and do a video for this, but gave up the ghost after four different attempts to gauge lighting, sound and distance.

Whoever knew these videos would be so bloody difficult to put together?? I even had a picture of Christopher Walken up on the iPad in the background, in an attempt to channel my inner Chris Justice – but to no avail!!

So, I took a few pictures of the ‘opening’ instead. It doesn’t quite generate the same excitement that a video does but at least you don’t have to put up with listening to my voice droning on 🙂

So here goes with the opening of the box –

As you can see it’s a lot like peeling back the layers of an onion!

The tin that the mini-box comes in is nice and solid although you can see a little internal damage on the internal inlay (top-left) which looks as if it was done during the packaging process as there’s no external damage to the tin.

This isn’t a big deal and doesn’t detract from the overall experience!

You can see from the final image that the mini-box is also sealed, which is a nice touch!


Well, with all that opening stuff out of the way it’s now time to look at the cards themselves, in the order they were seeded in the box, starting with –

Card No. 137 – Josh Hamilton ‘Base’ (Jersey) #’d 42/99

First off, these are nice cards made from a good, solid cardstock with a nice glossy finish. I’ve said this before but the all-white background coupled with a fair-sized, mono-chrome image of the player make these base cards absolutely glorious to behold!! My hat goes off to the guys at Panini for coming up with such a striking card design!!

I tell you, these are thick cards and will take a fair amount of bending to inflict any kind of damage on them (not that you’d ever want to, of course)!


Card No. 15 – Willie Kamm ‘All Decade’ (Bat) #’d 22/99

There are several ballplayers in this product that are getting their first ever memorabilia cards, and Willie Kamm of the Chicago White Sox is one of them!

The ‘All Decade’ subset is one of my favourites in the whole set so I was very please to get hold of this little beauty! Made from the same cardstock as the rest of the base cards I just love the design on the front of this card, especially the pencil thin border that frames all of the detail within!!

Very nice indeed!!


Card No. 43 – Miguel Cabrera ‘Treasure Materials’ (Jersey) #’d 88/99

Another jersey card, this time from the ‘Treasure Materials’ set, and featuring none other than 2012’s Triple Crown winner, Miguel Cabrera!

Not a lot to say about this one really. The ‘Treasure Materials’ set features all images of current players, courtesy of Panini’s license with the MLBPA, and isn’t one of my favourite in the set. Not because it’s a poor design, far from it, its just that I tend to gravitate towards the cards of the older ballplayers and HOF’ers!

That said, it’s a nice card of one of today’s greatest sluggers, so it’s not all bad!!


Card No. 18 – Bob Feller ‘Triple Crown Winners’ (Jersey) #’d 81/99

So from one Triple Crown winner to another with this awesome jersey card of Indians Hall of Famer, Bob Feller!

I like the ‘Triple Crown Winners’ set as it features a whole variety of old and new players, pitchers and hitters alike, all brought together under the same design as you see above! The simple use of blues and greys on the white card really accentuates the overall look of the card, and this is another set that I’d like to get more cards of.

Very happy with this one, and the fact that it’s a card of Bob Feller!


Card No. 214 – Tyler Pastornicky ‘Rated Rookies’ (Jersey/Auto) #’d 71/99

Not a player I’m familiar with but I do like the design, with a huge jersey swatch and an on-card autograph of the Braves 2012 Opening Day shortstop. This design is definitely my favourite of the ‘Rated Rookie’ cards and the jersey swatch is huge!!

Although it’s classed as a ‘rookie’ I’m still a bit of a traditionalist when it comes to a players first card and always look to Topps’ Bowman cards for my rookies and prospects. Call me old fashioned, but it’s just me!!

Still, these cards may well be overlooked by collectors and they make an interesting alternative for rookie and prospect collectors who are looking for early player cards to add to their PCs


Card No. 94 – Matt Harvey ‘Treasure Signature Materials’ (Jersey/Auto) #’d 40/99

Now I like this!!

The ‘Treasure Signature Materials’ set is not one I’d paid a lot of attention to before, but I like what I see. Made up of 100 cards and featuring a mixture of HOF’ers, retired players, current players and rookies, this is a really sharp looking cards. Even better that it features one of the Mets top young pitchers in Matt Harvey!

The autograph is of the sticker variety but this is something that doesn’t particularly bother me as it does some collectors. What does stand out with this card is that the signature is nice and clean, and the whole card has a nice structure to it! Again, another set that I’d like to add to my own collection!


Card No. 32 – Harry Heilmann ‘Greatness’ (Bat) #’d 10/99

Another old-time ballplayer finds its way into my collection in the form of Harry ‘Slug’ Heilmann. Another awesome set featuring several of the older Baseball greats, this card has a much simpler design than some of the others in National Treasures!

Nonetheless, I’m still very happy with this one. Heilmann himself was one of the best right-handed hitters to ever play the game, hitting over .300 in 12 seasons and finishing his career with a .342 lifetime batting average.


And last, but not least –

Card No. 73 – Mike Schmidt ‘Legends Cuts Jumbo Nickname’ (Cut Signature Book) #’d/5

Sorry guys, but it’s a redemption!! Certainly not a bad one from the looks of things, but a redemption all the same 😦

This is a Mike Schmidt ‘Legends Cuts Jumbo Nickname’ Book card, and I’ve had a look at the checklist for this and found out that it’s limited to just five copies!! Now that’s more like it!!!

I can’t tell you any more about it than that, I’m afraid!!

I guess that will have to be another post for another day!


And that’s all folks!!

Shame about the redemption but I’m looking forward to getting my hands on that Mike Schmidt book card whenever it arrives!!

I was slightly disappointed I didn’t pull either a Cardinals player or one of those Button inserts (don’t know why but I would have just loved one of those), but the Mike Schmidt Legends Cuts Jumbo Nickname Book card will go a ways in making up for that!

Would I consider that I’d made my money back on the box? I doubt it!

Does it matter that I didn’t make my money back on the box? Not in the slightest!!

I got this box for the experience of opening a high-end product, not to necessarily look for the big hits! I loved Panini Treasures before I got hold of the box and I love it just as much now! So I’d like to say a big ‘Thank You’ to everyone at Panini for all the hard work that’s gone into this product, and in making it such a great pleasure to open!

What would I have done if I’d pulled a big $$$ hit? Who knows?!?! If it wasn’t a player I was interested in, like Harper or Trout, I would have probably put it on eBay and ended up getting more National Treasures cards with whatever I would have made from the sale!

In summary –

Best Card – It has to be the Mike Schmidt Book, but as it’s a redemption I’ll also put forward the Matt Harvey card. I’ve been pleasantly surprised how much I like that card ‘in the flesh’! Great design with a nice, clear autograph!

Worst Card – I don’t really have one, but if pushed I’d probably say the Miguel Cabrera ‘Treasure Materials’ jersey as it’s not one of my favourite designs from the set

Overall Box Rating – 7/10 – Apart from the Schmidt #’d/5, I was surprised I didn’t get any other cards that were serially numbered less than 99. That’s not me being greedy, it’s just based upon observations I’ve made from all the other box breakvideos I’ve seen online

Overall Product Rating – 10/10 – No question one of the best Baseball releases in ages

I’d be interested to hear all your thoughts!!


6 thoughts on “Review: 2012 Panini National Treasures

  1. Two Tigers… know I’d be happy with that!! Be careful with that redemption card. If Panini value it “by the book” it might cost you a bit in the usual taxes and duty.

    1. Thanks Glenn!

      Never dealt with a redemption before so wasn’t sure what the process was.

      I’ll register and redeem it tonight, and just see what happens from there!

  2. I expressed my thoughts on this product before, and I say it again: for that kind of money, you should be entitled to have at least one colossal hit, a card that should leave you speechless for a couple of seconds.. from what I saw, 9 times oout of 10 this won’t happen.
    Anyway, I hope the Mike Schmidt card is a nice one.

    1. I think it all depends what you want out of it Fabio.

      If you break it expecting the ‘hit’ (and the ‘hit’ is the only thing that matters) then you’re right, you will come away disappointed in most instances!

      But it is a LOT of money to shell out in the first place and it’s unlikely I’ll ever go through the experience again!

      Unless I win the lottery this weekend… 🙂

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