2009 Tristar Prospects Plus Review

I’ve always considered Tristar’s Minor League releases as a “poor man’s Bowman Chrome”. The cards featured a respectable checklist, an average design, and sticker autographs.

So while the brand always sold for less than Bowman releases, the TTM crowd loved buying singles for autographs and those who could not afford exuberant Chrome prices always had a reliable alternative to seek out.

With Tristar Prospects Plus, clearly a huge effort went into the design. Base cards look amazing and each card is colorful and elegant. The problem, and it’s a big problem, the cards are now unlicensed.

There are some cards that you’d have a hard time telling the difference but about 50% of the cards I pulled featured players in plain, dark uniforms and hats similar to another non-licensed release, All Sport Plus.

Perhaps the biggest problem with this brand is the decision to include unnamed Stephen Strasburg cards. The cards aren’t done all that well and makes the product feel cheap and desperate.

If you love Minor League cards and can get past the lack of logos, this is definitely one of Tristar’s best efforts in quite sometime. It’s a shame that it took them losing their license to really kick up dust in the design department.


Current price – $75 dollars on DaCardWorld.com

Guarantees – 120 cards with 4 autographs per box

Look for – “hot boxes”, low-numbered autographs

The Good:

Excellent design

Obak Updates

The Bad:

No MiLB or MLB license

The Stephen Strasburg Sketches


Autograph – Matthew Davidson #’d to 199

Autograph – Robert Stock #’d to 199

Autograph – Colton Cain #’d to 50

Autograph – Neil Medchill #’d to 5

Final Grade: C+



  1. “hose who could not afford exuberant Chrome prices”

    Uh, Bowman Chrome usually drops to 30$ a box. Not to mention the whole on card autos and not looking like shit aspect of it as well.

  2. I rate this the same as you Mario, it would have been an A if they had an MiLB or MLB license and those unnamed Stephen Strasburg cards are vomit inducing.

  3. Um. Its just not that good. Unlicesensed can be good on a minor league product, as long as you are only showing minor league players, but as whole the product is just ok. which isnt a good buy at 75 dollars

  4. As usual with Tri-Star, they have done a good job on the design of the card. As to the non-license aspect, the minor league cards do not NEED to be licensed. Yes, it is nice to see the different minor league logos. But you may not know the team affiliation by looking at the front of the card. These were done the way of Donruss Elite EEE. They have the AL / NL with the city name. I do not mind that on these cards.

    I think the fadded color back grounds are great. Right no, $70 is too much to pay for a box. In a few months, it will be down to $30. When it hits $30 (and it will), then I will pick up a few and build the set.

  5. from Blowout:

    2009 Bowman Chrome Hobby Box $37.95
    2008 Bowman Chrome Hobby Box $29.95

    2007 Bowman Chrome was the last decent chrome box

    TriStar and Bowman Chrome are 2 different animals.

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