Topps declares baseball card war against Upper Deck in court

Ah, there's nothing like a good old fashioned baseball card fight and it looks like that's what we have between Topps and Upper Deck.

On Tuesday, Topps performed the legal equivalent of placing its competitor between bicycle spokes, filing a lawsuit in U.S. District Court alleging that Upper Deck stole its layout and design for a 2009 set from a set produced by Topps way back in 1975.

However, the pilfering is not said to end there. Topps also claims that Upper Deck is planning new product based on Topps' 1971 and '77 sets. The Manhattan-based card company wants the court to order that any existing cards be destroyed and Upper Deck to turn over any profits from any sales already made.

From the Associated Press:

In its lawsuit, Topps described how it believes Upper Deck mimicked its design with just a few variations.

It said similarities between each company's cards included the use of a colorful, divided two-tone border, the player's photograph superimposed on a thin white border, the player's autograph toward the bottom of the picture and the use of an image of a baseball on a bottom corner of the card.

Topps said its competitor's cards will confuse or deceive customers because each of the Upper Deck designs are nearly identical to the Topps cards.

Compare Brooks Robinson's 1975 Topps to Evan Longoria's 2009 Upper Deck above and it's hard not to see the similarities, (even though I don't see the autograph on the '09). It would appear that Topps has a few bones to pick with its top rival.

A spokesperson for Upper Deck has yet to comment, so it looks like we might be seeing this one tied up in the boring legal system. But, really, how boring could a court case be if it involves baseball cards in each exhibit?