I fear I may have done my Padres-themed "Cards of the Year" post a little prematurely. A few days after publishing, I got the lone Padres card in this year's Stadium Club set. Not that it would've been that high on the countdown (It'd probably take over the ten spot, instead of a different Gwynn card from Topps Series 1), but it definitely warrants some attention.
Topps has done a pretty good job of using different images of Tony Gwynn on it's cards. I mean, I'm not an expert on the subject, but of the 500+ Gwynn cards I have, this is the first time I've seen this picture of Mr. Padre. Love that they used the brown Friar uniforms from the 80's, and you can see a glimpse of the "RAK" patch on the left sleeve (for Padres owner, Ray A Kroc). I miss seeing the full bleed photos, with the only "design" being on the nameplate.
As great as the front of the card looks, the back is a little lacking. I appreciate the good write up, mentioning Tony's string of All-Star Game appearances and comparison to Ted Williams, but that's about it. Remember when they used to have the rookie cards on the back of Stadium Club cards? That would've been cool. This looks pretty boring, and the info box on the top right is unnecessarily large.
Stadium Club is a little too high end for me to buy any packs (well, that, and it's also not available in retail), but when I can pick up a card for 99 cents with free shipping, well, I guess I'm a pretty happy guy.