By Barry Janoff
July 31, 2013: Topps, which has been producing iconic cards of baseball players for more than 60 years, is moving into Fathead territory.
The company has created a new division, Archive Prints, a collection of 25" x 34" vintage art prints featuring digitally remastered original Major League Baseball card artwork.
The company's first foray into the home decor market will feature more than 1,000 original Archive Prints of the biggest MLB stars from the 1970s, 1980s, and 1990s.
According to Topps, each print begins with "the actual physical card from the Topps' archives and then painstakingly re-mastering the artwork with a team of designers."
Unlike the original packs of cards, however, no gum is included.
All Archive Prints are officially licensed by MLB, the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum and the Major League Alumni Marketing Assn.
Among the prints being offered are 20 different Nolan Ryan cards (1980-1990), 12 Reggie Jackson cards (with the New York Yankees and California Angels), 14 Cal Ripken Jr. cards, George Brett, Gary Carter, Mike Schmidt, Tony Gwynn, Jim Rice and Ozzie Smith; and managers including Tommy LaSorda and Sparky Anderson.
Topps is supporting with a spot that shows how the prints are made and a dedicated micro-site that offers the entire collection, which is being updated on a regular basis.
"Having been in the baseball card business for over 60 years, Topps has amassed an amazing collection of one-of-a-kind card artwork and Major League Baseball player photography," Michael Bramlage, vp-digital for The Topps Co., said in a statement.
"Each card captures the style of that year and enshrines the image of your favorite MLB players, exactly as you remember them growing up. We're excited to begin opening up our archives with these authentic, high-quality prints for your wall," said Branlage.
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