1998 Pinnacle Epix Baseball Cards

1998 Pinnacle Epix Baseball Cards

1998 Pinnacle Epix baseball cards present stunning designs, articulate confusion, complex rarity, and a somewhat bizarre history. For new collectors, it can be difficult to accurately identify each card from this set. It wasn't until many years after this set was released that I finally figured out what was what and it was only after mis-identifying cards and thinking I had stuff I didn't. If this is you, don't feel bad; it's common.

This set was released around the time Pinnacle was filing for bankruptcy so it never actualized full release and until recently, it was believed the remaining cards that were set to be released didn't actually exist.

In 2018, one seller listed all sorts of unknown cards from the Pinnacle Bankruptcy. The lot included missing cards from the 1998 Pinnacle Epix set. For Frank Thomas collectors, this was our first time seeing the Play versions.

To showcase each of the different designs and parallels from 1998 Pinnacle Epix, depicted here are images of every version of every card featuring Frank Thomas from the set, which comes to 15 unique cards in total. Also featured are examples of each of the three different Header cards. These 18 cards are from my personal collection and it took many years to collect them all.

For player collectors, this is a fun albeit challenging set to collect. Aggressive collectors are known to collect the three Header cards to complement their runs. Completests will attempt to pursue the three unicorn bankruptcy issues, which are the rarest and most expensive versions.

Everything is discussed here, which is a lot so let's get to it. This is 1998 Pinnacle Epix.

Value multipliers are provided to offer an idea of rarity but they don't reflect actual market values.*


1998 Pinnacle Epix Season
1998 Pinnacle Epix Season

1998 Pinnacle Epix Season is a 24-card set (18 officially released, 6 unreleased) and is one of five different 1998 Pinnacle Epix parallel sets. 1998 Pinnacle Epix Season is a multi-release set; here's its distribution, associated insertion ratios, and checklist:

  • Cards #E1-E6 were distributed in packs of 1998 Zenith (1:11)
  • Cards #E7-E12 were distributed in packs of basic 1998 Pinnacle (1:21)
  • Cards #E13-E18 were distributed in packs of 1998 Score (1:61)

Cards #E19-E24 were intended to be seeded within 1998 Pinnacle Certified. However, Pinnacle went bankrupt prior to its release so those cards were never officially released.

E1: Ken Griffey Jr.
E2: Juan Gonzalez
E3: Jeff Bagwell
E4: Ivan Rodriguez
E5: Nomar Garciaparra
E6: Ryne Sandberg
E7: Frank Thomas
E8: Derek Jeter
E9: Tony Gwynn
E10: Albert Belle
E11: Scott Rolen
E12: Barry Larkin

E13: Alex Rodriguez
E14: Cal Ripken Jr.
E15: Chipper Jones
E16: Mo Vaughn
E17: Roger Clemens
E18: Mark McGwire
E19: Mike Piazza
E20: Andruw Jones
E21: Greg Maddux
E22: Barry Bonds
E23: Paul Molitor
E24: Eddie Murray

Pack distribution for each of the three Season cards is the same. Though specific seeding rations for each version of Epix Season were never released, it's believed that:

  • Orange Season parallels carry a 8x value multiplier to the basic card.
  • Purple Season parallels carry a 1.5x value multiplier and were approximately 3x tougher to pull from packs than Orange.
  • Emerald Season parallels carry a 3x value multiplier and were approximately 6x tougher to pull from packs than Orange.

1998 Pinnacle Epix Game
1998 Pinnacle Epix Game

1998 Pinnacle Epix Game is a 24-card set (18 officially released, 6 unreleased) and is one of five different 1998 Pinnacle Epix parallel sets. 1998 Pinnacle Epix Game is a multi-release set; here's its distribution, associated insertion ratios, and checklist:

  • Cards #E1-E6 were distributed in packs of basic 1998 Pinnacle (1:21)
  • Cards #E7-E12 were distributed in packs of 1998 Score (1:61)
  • Cards #E19-E24 were distributed in packs of 1998 Zenith (1:11)

Cards #E13-E18 were intended to be seeded within 1998 Pinnacle Certified. However, Pinnacle went bankrupt prior to its release so those cards were never officially released.

E1: Ken Griffey Jr.
E2: Juan Gonzalez
E3: Jeff Bagwell
E4: Ivan Rodriguez
E5: Nomar Garciaparra
E6: Ryne Sandberg
E7: Frank Thomas
E8: Derek Jeter
E9: Tony Gwynn
E10: Albert Belle
E11: Scott Rolen
E12: Barry Larkin

E13: Alex Rodriguez
E14: Cal Ripken Jr.
E15: Chipper Jones
E16: Mo Vaughn
E17: Roger Clemens
E18: Mark McGwire

E19: Mike Piazza
E20: Andruw Jones
E21: Greg Maddux
E22: Barry Bonds
E23: Paul Molitor
E24: Eddie Murray

Pack distribution for each of the three Game cards is the same. Though specific seeding rations for each version of Epix Game were never released, it's believed that:

  • Orange Game parallels carry a 4x value multiplier to the basic card.
  • Purple Game parallels carry a 1.5x value multiplier and were approximately 3x tougher to pull from packs than Orange.
  • Emerald Game parallels carry a 3x value multiplier and were approximately 6x tougher to pull from packs than Orange.

1998 Pinnacle Epix Moment
1998 Pinnacle Epix Moment

1998 Pinnacle Epix Moment is a 24-card set (18 officially released, 6 unreleased) and is one of five different 1998 Pinnacle Epix parallel sets. 1998 Pinnacle Epix Moment is a multi-release set; here's its distribution, associated insertion ratios, and checklist:

  • Cards #E7-E12 were distributed in packs of 1998 Zenith (1:11)
  • Cards #E13-E18 were distributed in packs of basic 1998 Pinnacle (1:21)
  • Cards #E19-E24 were distributed in packs of 1998 Score (1:61)

Cards #E1-E6 were intended to be seeded within 1998 Pinnacle Certified. However, Pinnacle went bankrupt prior to its release so those cards were never officially released.

E1: Ken Griffey Jr.
E2: Juan Gonzalez
E3: Jeff Bagwell
E4: Ivan Rodriguez
E5: Nomar Garciaparra
E6: Ryne Sandberg

E7: Frank Thomas
E8: Derek Jeter
E9: Tony Gwynn
E10: Albert Belle
E11: Scott Rolen
E12: Barry Larkin

E13: Alex Rodriguez
E14: Cal Ripken Jr.
E15: Chipper Jones
E16: Mo Vaughn
E17: Roger Clemens
E18: Mark McGwire
E19: Mike Piazza
E20: Andruw Jones
E21: Greg Maddux
E22: Barry Bonds
E23: Paul Molitor
E24: Eddie Murray

Pack distribution for each of the three Moment cards is the same. Though specific seeding rations for each version of Epix Moment were never released, it's believed that:

  • Orange Moment parallels carry a 5x value multiplier to the basic card.
  • Purple Moment parallels carry a 1.5x value multiplier and were approximately 3x tougher to pull from packs than Orange.
  • Emerald Moment parallels carry a 3x value multiplier and were approximately 6x tougher to pull from packs than Orange.

It was publicly announced that less than 30 sets of the Moment Emerald parallels were produced. This card is what makes this set particularly challenging to collect. It took me several years of diligent searching before I got mine and it was only because a fellow Thomas collector liquidated his collection. The meager print run makes these especially hard to find. Thankfully, and as with any card from 1998 Pinnacle Epix, serial numbers aren't printed on these cards.


1998 Pinnacle Epix Play
1998 Pinnacle Epix Play

1998 Pinnacle Epix Play is a 24-card set (18 officially released, 6 unreleased) and is one of five different 1998 Pinnacle Epix parallel sets. 1998 Pinnacle Epix Play is a multi-release set; here's its distribution, associated insertion ratios, and checklist:

  • Cards #E1-E6 were distributed in packs of 1998 Score (1:61)
  • Cards #E13-E18 were distributed in packs of 1998 Zenith (1:11)
  • Cards #E19-E24 were distributed in packs of basic 1998 Pinnacle (1:21)

Cards #E7-E12 were intended to be seeded within 1998 Pinnacle Certified. However, Pinnacle went bankrupt prior to its release so those cards were never officially released.

E1: Ken Griffey Jr.
E2: Juan Gonzalez
E3: Jeff Bagwell
E4: Ivan Rodriguez
E5: Nomar Garciaparra
E6: Ryne Sandberg
E7: Frank Thomas
E8: Derek Jeter
E9: Tony Gwynn
E10: Albert Belle
E11: Scott Rolen
E12: Barry Larkin

E13: Alex Rodriguez
E14: Cal Ripken Jr.
E15: Chipper Jones
E16: Mo Vaughn
E17: Roger Clemens
E18: Mark McGwire
E19: Mike Piazza
E20: Andruw Jones
E21: Greg Maddux
E22: Barry Bonds
E23: Paul Molitor
E24: Eddie Murray

Pack distribution for each of the three Play cards is the same. Though specific seeding rations for each version of Epix Play were never released, it's believed that:

  • Orange Play parallels carry a 2.5x value multiplier to the basic card.
  • Purple Play parallels carry a 1.5x value multiplier and were approximately 3x tougher to pull from packs than Orange.
  • Emerald Play parallels carry a 3x value multiplier and were approximately 6x tougher to pull from packs than Orange.

This Frank Thomas 1998 Pinnacle Epix Play 3-card run was purchased together as a set. I was initially offered it when it became available in 2018 but timing prevented me from accepting. Timing was better for me in 2020 and luckily the seller still had a set available so we closed. These complete the full run of Frank Thomas cards from 1998 Pinnacle Epix.


1998 Pinnacle Plus All-Star Epix
1998 Pinnacle Plus All-Star Epix

1998 Pinnacle Plus All-Star Epix is a 24-card set and is one of five different 1998 Pinnacle Epix parallel sets. They were randomly inserted in packs at a rate of 1:21. This set showcases All-Star game highlights from baseball's top stars. The checklist for this set is slightly different than those associated with the other sets. 1998 Pinnacle Plus All-Star Epix is a multi-release set; here's its distribution, and checklist:

  • Cards #1-12 were inserted in packs of Score Rookie and Traded
  • Cards #13-24 were inserted in packs of Pinnacle Plus

E1: Ken Griffey Jr.
E2: Juan Gonzalez
E3: Jeff Bagwell
E4: Ivan Rodriguez
E5: Nomar Garciaparra
E6: Ryne Sandberg
E7: Frank Thomas
E8: Derek Jeter
E9: Tony Gwynn
E10: Albert Belle
E11: Scott Rolen
E12: Barry Larkin

E13: Alex Rodriguez
E14: Cal Ripken Jr.
E15: Chipper Jones
E16: Roger Clemens
E17: Mo Vaughn
E18: Mark McGwire
E19: Mike Piazza
E20: Andruw Jones
E21: Greg Maddux
E22: Barry Bonds
E23: Paul Molitor
E24: Hideo Nomo

  • Orange All-Star Epix parallels carry a 5x value multiplier to the basic card.
  • Purple All-Star Epix parallels carry a 1.5x value multiplier to the Orange.
  • Emerald All-Star Epix parallels carry a 3x value multiplier to the Orange.

Print run info is believed to be stated in the September 1998 issue of Beckett Baseball Card Monthly.


1998 Pinnacle Epix Headers
1998 Pinnacle Epix Headers

1998 Pinnacle Epix Headers come in the three different colors: Orange, Purple, and Emerald. Technically, this is a sixth parallel set. While you might not think it, collecting all three Header cards has proven to be challenging. For a lot of owners, these cards fall into the "who cares" category, which is why they rarely find their way to market. Bottom line, this is the kind of stuff that often gets shuffled under the rug. It's this reason that causes these cards to be mysteriously rare and interesting. While little information is known about insertion ratios and print runs of these Header cards, the Emerald is particularly difficult to find. While these are more cherry on the top than anything else, they do make for a nice round out of the run for those lucky enough to get this far.

→ To see the current eBay auctions for 1998 Pinnacle Epix, click here.


Ken Griffey Jr. 1998 Pinnacle Epix #E1
Ken Griffey Jr. 1998 Pinnacle Epix | Source: @workoutbaseball

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