Tuesday, January 22, 2013

2003 Donruss Elite

Set Size: 200 cards

Design Notes: The mostly-empty foilboard background is interrupted by two horizontal white lines, between which is a blurry background photo. The player's name, team, and position are easily found along the side. The backs are much easier to view (and scan) with recent statistics and a highlight writeup.

Parallels and Similars: There are five parallels to the set: Aspirations and Aspirations Gold, Status and Status Gold, and an Atlantic City National parallel. Donruss Elite designs, similar to Bowman, remained somewhat similar from year to year. Additionally, the Extra Edition set made things a little more confusing. However, the Donruss Elite logo contains the year making identification fairly easy.

Distribution: Hobby boxes had 20 packs with five cards per pack. The last 20 cards in the set are serial-numbered rookies (/1750).

Thoughts: Foilboard never scans well on my scanner, and that makes it impossible to see the small background photo. I enjoy that part of the photo, because the foil helps it stand out as almost holographic, especially on the gold parallels. Elite sets were much more beautiful in the 1990s, though (especially the inserts) - the 2000s issues have gone the way of Bowman with a lazy design concept and instead relying on rookie and/or hit (autograph/relic) selection.

Additional Images: COMC image of Status Gold to show background detail:
2003 Donruss Elite Status Gold #128 - Bartolo Colon/24 - Courtesy of

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