The Bowman Reclamation Project

Overview

•There’s no denying that the Bowman name is losing some of its luster.  Over the last few years many of the Bowman brands have failed to live up to expectations.  This is happening for several reasons, which will be outlined below.
•The idea behind this project is to change the entire way the Bowman brands are developed.  This will include replacing some and major overhauls to others.

Reasons for Failures
•There are several reasons that the Bowman brands haven’t been as great lately.  Perhaps the biggest reason is that the checklists continue to get weaker.  Some of this is unavoidable.  However, some of this is due to not digging deep enough and due to the fact that Bowman Draft “wastes” so many of the top guys in one product.
•Another reason has to do with the checklists as well.  This is the idea that guys are used every single year in these Bowman products.  Many guys have a 1st Bowman card one year and then continue to have Bowman cards until they reach the Majors.  This makes the checklists very repetitive and takes away from the idea of “prospecting.”
•All of these Bowman brand products are based off the same idea.  They all feature on-card autographs with a bunch of different parallels.  None of them have a newness feel to them or offer much of anything but the same.  All of them except Inception are on Chrome technology.  There has to be a “hook” to each product that sets it apart and drives collectors to buy it.

Basic Ideas for Changes
•Bowman will still be produced, but will no longer feature Chrome cards.  It will have only Bowman paper cards.  It will release in mid-March.
•A photo shoot will be done where players will put on jerseys, hats, shoes, gloves, etc.  This will be just like the football or basketball photo shoot.  It should include as many first rounders and some later round players as possible.  If players can’t attend, a private shoot should be done.  This will help with photography, but the main reason will be for memorabilia cards.
•No autograph content will be from anything but prospects in Bowman brand products.  There will no longer be veteran or RC content in these products, other than base cards.  This will help maintain the value of RC content in Topps brand products, while also helping to not dilute the checklists in Bowman brand products.
•No players will be used in more than one year of Bowman brand products.  When a player gets drafted, he’ll have all his Bowman brand products the next year.  Then he won’t have anymore Bowman brand autographs again.  This will help with the checklists and also help to maintain the value of these cards.
•Bowman Draft will not be made any longer.  Too many players are wasted as a 1st year card because of Bowman Draft and Bowman Sterling.  Players will no longer have cards the year they are drafted.  They will have their prospect cards the next year or later.
•Every autograph in every product will be on-card.

Product Breakdown
•The first product of the year will be Bowman and it will release around mid-March.  It will no longer include any Chrome and will be a Bowman paper product only.
•Next up will be Bowman Inception which will be geared the same as now.  However, it will not include any RC content and all jersey/patch autos will be prospects.  This product will release in early May.
•Bowman Chrome will be next and will release in mid-July.  It will be the same idea as it is now.
•Bowman Platinum will be up next.  This product will still feature one autograph jersey per box, but it will now be all prospects.  There will now be dual and triple autographs.  This product will release early September.
•Bowman Prime will take the place of Bowman Draft.  This product will feature one autograph patch prospect per box.  It will release in mid-October.
•Lastly, we have Bowman Dynasty.  This will be a super high-end, super premium prospect product.  It will replace Bowman Sterling and will come out early-December.

Bowman
•All cards will now be regular paper cards.  No more Chrome in this product.  Stephen Strasburg and Bryce Harper have proven that paper autographs still sell very well.  There is no reason to have Bowman Chrome in 3 different products.
•There will still be all the same parallels.  Bowman and Bowman Chrome should mirror each other, in terms of parallels.  There should be a base version, Refractor/Silver #ed /500, Blue #ed /250, Black #ed /100, Green #ed /75, Gold #ed /50, Orange #ed /25, Purple #ed /10, Red #ed /5 and Super/Gold #ed /1.  Any parallels added to one should also be added to the other.
•The parallels should be the EXACT same on the non-auto cards.  We should have Blue autos #ed to 250 and Blue non-auto #ed to 250.  Everything should be the same.
•The base set will still include veterans and RCs, but there will be no autograph content from any non-prospect players.
•Inserts should be the same in Bowman and Bowman Chrome.  There should be at least 3-4 inserts sets.
•There will be a Hobby and Jumbo version of this product.  Hobby should have 2 Autos and Jumbo should have 5.
•Cost will be around $50 for Hobby and $110 for Jumbo.

Bowman Inception
•This product will be very similar to how it is done now.  However, all autographs will be prospects and no more RCs.
•There will still be no base cards.
•Parallels of the autographs should be a little easier to get.  There should be at least 1 parallel autograph per box.
•Jersey/patch autographs will be random.
•There will be more high-end chase now with more patches and more booklets.
•5 autographs per box.  Same cost as now.

Bowman Chrome
•This will be a true parallel product to Bowman.  EVERYTHING should be the exact same.  Same checklist, same parallels, same inserts, etc.
•This product will also feature a Hobby and Jumbo version.  Prices should be the exact same as Bowman.  However, Hobby will only have 1 autograph and Jumbo will only have 3 autographs.

Bowman Platinum
•This product will be very similar to what it is now.  It will still feature Chrome technology for the autographs, but not for any base.
•Every box should include 1 autograph jersey or patch.  There should be at least 3 patches per case.
•The parallels should be different in color and numbering from Bowman Chrome.  That means if Black was used in Bowman Chrome, it should not be used in this product.  Since there are only so many colors, this product will feature multi-colored refractors.  This will be similar to what Panini does for Prizm now.  A red/white/blue refractor, a black/green refractor, a yellow/orange refractor, etc.
•Base cards will not be on Chrome technology.  They will be the same as they are now, but this will also include the prospects.  The only base Chrome cards that the prospects will have will come in Bowman Chrome.  Base should still have all the different colored parallels.
•Cost will be around the same as it is now.  2 autographs and 1 autograph memorabilia.

Bowman Prime
•This product will be similar to an SP Authentic type of product.  It will be on regular paper stock.  Will look white and classy.
•Each box will have 1 autograph patch and 2 autographs.  All of these autographs will be #ed to 999 or less with a gold version #ed to 25 and a black version 1/1.  The patch auto 1/1s will include an MLB logo.
•This product will also include other memorabilia pieces like gloves, shoes, hats, etc.
•There should be several inserts as well.
•This product will have 3 mini boxes with one pack.  Each mini box will contain 1 autograph.
•Cost will be around $75-$80.

Bowman Dynasty
•Finally prospectors have a huge, high-end chase product.
•This product will be the only prospect product to feature the following: Jumbo Patches, Jumbo Patch Autographs, Booklet Dual Jumbo Patches, Booklet Dual Jumbo Patch Autographs, Booklet Dual MLB Logos, Booklet Dual Letters, Quad Autographs, Six Player Autographs, Eight Player Booklet Autographs.
•Every hit will be from a prospect.  The base set should only be 40-50 players and should all be prospects #ed /99.
•5 hits per box, with at least 3 being autographs.  All memorabilia are patches.
•Cost is around $200 per box.

Reasons Why This Will Work
•Some of these products are drastically changed and some aren’t really changed at all.  The unchanged products will work better now because of the improved checklist.  Every Bowman brand product will have super strong checklist as it will utilize all the players from the past MLB Draft.
•Each product now has it’s own feel to it.  None of these products are too similar and no prospects will have multiple Chrome autographs.  This will really help to increase the value of these cards.
•Collectors can now look forward to each and every year as the checklist is 100% different.  There are no scrub 23rd round 27-year old relief pitchers any longer.  And no player is used for more than 1 year.
•Products are spread out throughout the year to give collectors time to recover from one product to the next.  Also, none of these products will compete with Topps brand products like Finest or Topps Chrome any longer since the RC content is gone.

Reasons For Push Back
•Potential lost revenue on Bowman Draft and Bowman Sterling.  I believe this revenue will be more than made up for throughout the entire year.  More of all of these products will be ordered because they will all be stronger than in the past.  Plus the two new products will sell very well and should come close to the shared revenue of Sterling and Draft.
•This isn’t a plan that can be implemented right away.  Topps will have to suffer a bit one year since they won’t be able to do Bowman Draft.  This could happen in 2015 and then start the plan in 2016.  Obviously, 2015 will be a bit of a down year.  However, the long term outlook for Bowman is bleak if changes aren’t made.  Once this plan is implemented, Bowman products will be viable each and every year going forward.  No more of this Bowman Draft & Bowman flourishing and then hoping for the best on the rest.
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