Thursday, February 22, 2024

Most Valuable Rookie Baseball Cards

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Topps #164 Roberto Clemente Rookie Card

The 15 Most Valuable Topps Baseball Rookie Cards from 2000-2009

Estimated PSA 9 Mint Value: $325,000

Dimensions: 2-5/8″ x 3-3/4″

Demand for Clementes rookie card has skyrocketed over the past couple of years.

While a PSA 10 Gem Mint copy sold for $432,690 in 2012 a PSA 9 copy sold for an even higher amount, $478k, in 2016.

That tells you how much the prices of Clementes rookie card have increased. His aggressive play on the field and his generous ways off the field made him a special individual.

His legendary career and life were cut short on December 31, 1972, when he died in a plane crash while en route to deliver aid to earthquake victims in Nicaragua.

Along with the Killebrew and Koufax rookies, the Roberto Clemente rookie card is an anchor in the 1955 Topps baseball card set and the most expensive of the three.

Mike Trout 2009 Bowman Chrome Gold Refractor // $215000

Dubbed âthe holiest of grailsâ by Sports Collectors Daily, Mike Troutâs rookie status with the Los Angeles Angels got the highly reflective treatment from Bowman in 2009. A Professional Sports Authenticator 10 autographed card fetched $215,000 on eBay. In 2012, the card could have been had for as little as $2500. Only 50 of the Gold Refractor versions were produced.

Fleer #258 Mike Schmidt

Estimated PSA 10 Gem Mint Value: $40

Before the 1982 season, Mike Schmidt and the Philadelphia Phillies agreed to a six-year deal that would guarantee at least $10 million for the future Hall of Fame third baseman.

Over 148 games, Schmidt belted 35 home runs with 87 RBI while also scoring 108 runs, thanks largely to his MLB-best .403 on-base percentage.

Schmidt also led the NL in slugging percentage , OPS , OPS+ , and walks .

Recognized as one of the best players in the league on both sides of the ball, Schmidt also picked up his third-straight Silver Slugger and seventh-straight Gold Glove.

Though the Phillies had certainly got their money’s worth, there would be no three-peat for Schmidt as NL MVP though he did finish sixth in the vote.

Unfortunately, there would also be no postseason for the Phillies under new head coach Pat Corrales as their 89-73 record didn’t quite top the first-place St. Louis Cardinals at 92-70.

The following season, Schmidt would get a crack at another World Series ring after the Phillies swept Los Angeles in the NLCS but, unfortunately, they’d lose in five to the Baltimore Orioles in the 1983 World Series.

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Topps #82 Mickey Mantle

Estimated PSA 9 Mint Value: $325,000

Dimensions: 2-5/8″ x 3-3/4″

Some argue that this is Mickey Mantles most beautiful card.

But whats not up for debate is whether its one of his most important.

Collectors go wild for it. Especially for high condition copies of the card.

Centering and chipping along the red bottom border are usually obstacles to achieving a higher grade.

And because it features a close-up of Mantle, print defects on his face can also sometimes turn off collectors.

It should be no surprise that this card is the key to the entire set with the Willie Mays and Jackie Robinson cards coming in second and third place, respectively.

T3 Turkey Red Cabinets Ty Cobb

10 Most Valuable 1990 Topps Baseball Cards

Estimated PSA 8 NM-MT Value: $220,000

Dimensions: 5-3/4″ x 8″

Theres just something about this card that makes it visually stunning.

These 5¾ by 8 cards were part of a redemption program where collectors sent in coupons in exchange for them. Either 10 Turkey Red Cigarette coupons or 25 Old Mill or Fez Cigarette coupons would earn you one card.

Walter Johnson, Christy Mathewson, and Cy Young were also featured in the set but Cobbs issue is undoubtedly the most desired.

Collectors got a glimpse of what it was like to be a pitcher in that era with Cobb intensely staring them down before the pitch.

Neither makes a difference when it comes to value, though.

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Shohei Ohtani 2018 Topps Chrome #150 1/1 Superfractor $301048

Ohtani is in just his 5th season in the MLB but is making waves as a successful two-way player.

Hes currently batting .269 with 37 home runs and is 6-1 with a 2.93 ERA as a pitcher. Ohtani is breaking records on the mount and at the plate. This card is just a population of 1 and recently sold at Goldin Auctions. A base version of this card in a PSA 9 is valued at $99.96 and has sold for as low as $50 raw .

Topps Steve Carlton Rc/fritz Ackley Rc #477

The list of 1965 Topps Rookie Cards includes several Hall of Famers including Joe Morgan, Jim Catfish Hunter and Tony Perez. But the top card belongs to Steve Carlton, a four-time Cy Young Award winner. Hes paired with Fritz Ackley to make for a card that, visually, doesnt have a lot of flair. But thats standard for the majority of multi-player Rookies from the era. Coming from the higher part of the checklist makes this card a little more scarce but its not considered to be one a short print to the same level as Hunter, Perez and the rest of the final series, which starts at #523.

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Topps Fernando Tatis Jr Rc #410

Pete Alonso may have broken the rookie home run record but collectors appear to be playing the long game with 2019 Topps Baseball. Prices on Fernando Tatis Jr. Rookie Cards have surpassed comparable Alonso cards when it comes to prices. Its still early, though. Like 2018, theres a deep class to draw from that also includes Keston Hiura, Vladimir Guerrero Jr. , Eloy Jimenez and more.

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What Is The Oldest Baseball Card Company

Top 45 Most Valuable Ken Griffey Jr Baseball Cards Rookie Card Value?

While various forms of baseball cards have existed since the mid-1800s, the first company to mass-produce baseball cards in America was Goodwin & Co., which launched the now-famous N167 line in 1886. These cards featured 12 players from the New York Giants, the companyâs home team. Over time, baseball cards became a major mass phenomenon, and these days, there are dozens of baseball card companies across the country.

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Red Lobster Ryne Sandberg Rookie Card#23

The 1982 Red Lobster Ryne Sandberg is technically the first rookie card released for Ryne Sandbergs professional career. He started with the Chicago Cubs in 1982, originally playing third base.

The Cubs released a team set of cards, which included rookie Ryne Sandberg. Red Lobster sponsored the release of the cards, and the restaurants logo appears on the back.

Fleer Baseball Cards In Review

As you can see, Fleer’s follow-up to their flagship 1981 release made up for the many printing issues they faced by offering some great cards.

Cal Ripken Jr.’s rookie card easily sits at the top of the list as the most desirable, but plenty of other star and Hall of Famer cards will keep you busy.

And, don’t forget, Fleer included those team logo stickers for the first time, too, after losing a court decision that said Topps was the only company that could include gum in their packs.

As far as subsets go, Fleer did squeeze one in with cards #628 – #646 commemorating significant player achievements and magic moments from the 1981 season.

Some collectors may find the design boring, but others appreciate its simplicity.

It’s hard to pick a favorite Fleer set from the 1980s but this one ranks among my favorite.

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Where To Find 2022 Baseball Rookie Cards

For licensed 2022 MLB rookie cards, collectors have a variety of Topps sets issued throughout the year, and possibly into 2023. There are also MLBPA-licensed Panini products. These two card makers supply the bulk of the rookie content.

Other brands offer prospect-driven products without any league or team licensing.

Review all the products with the full 2022 Baseball Card lineup.

Baseball Cards Worth Money: Most Valuable Baseball Cards List

10 Most Valuable 1990 Topps Baseball Cards

Baseball cards are a memory for all those who love baseball. Do you remember the excitement a child feels when he finds his favorite card for the first time?

The original purpose of baseball cards was to promote cigarette packs. Gradually, it became popular, and many people considered collecting it as a hobby. Are baseball cards worth money? If you still have Hall of Fame or rookie cards, find them now. Their value can be up to six or seven cash figures.

This article by Scott Fujita will help you better understand why these sports cards are valuable and point out the most valuable baseball card.

Baseball cards may offer a massive fortune for their owners


  • Final Thoughts
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    Nadja Caramel E92 Ty Cobb

    Estimated PSA 9 Mint Value: $115,000

    Dimensions: 1-1/2″ x 2-3/4″

    Nadja was a brand name of the Blake-Wenneker Candy Co. of St Louis and the set features 62 cards in total.

    Caramel cards are usually more scarce than tobacco cards since they were sold to children rather than adults.

    You can imagine the wear and tear that children put on the cards by comparison.

    As with the American Caramel Cobb card mentioned just a bit ago, the design of the card isnt unique but it is certainly one of the more desirable Cobb poses in the hobby.

    Topps #485 Gaylord Perry

    Estimated PSA 8 NM-MT Value: $650

    The San Francisco Giants were on a World Series mission during the 1969 season as they had plenty of incredible talent on both offense and defense.

    Went it came to the starting rotation, they depended heavily on their two studs, Gaylord Perry and Juan Marichal.

    In fact, by season’s end, Perry had led the Majors in innings pitched and batters faced while turning in an incredible 26 complete games over his 39 starts.

    Perry’s 2.21 ERA and 1.171 WHIP kept opponents on their toes all season long and allowed him to earn an impressive 19 wins.

    Between the two of them, they contributed 40 of the Giants’ 90 wins that year, but it was not enough to get past the first-place Atlanta Braves and their 93-69 record.

    As you can see, Perry was another one of the players in the set who was impacted by the white letter error, giving that variation of his card a nice boost in price in top grade.

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    Fleer Update Dwight Gooden Rc #u

    Perhaps the least recognizable card on this list, the 1984 Fleer Update Dwight Gooden makes the cut primarily because of the set and not the player. 1984 Fleer Update Baseball has long been considered one of the rarest sets of the era and still commands top-dollar today. Despite a tumultuous end to his playing career and several off-field incidents, Gooden still has a dedicated collecting base who look back fondly on his dominance during the mid-1980s.

    Goudey #144 Babe Ruth

    Top 25 Most Valuable Baseball Cards from the 1990’s – Rookie Cards Only

    Estimated PSA 9 Mint Value: $350,000

    Dimensions: 2-3/8″ x 2-7/8″

    The last of the legendary quartet of 1933 Goudey Ruth cards on our list is the #144 Full Body Ruth.

    This one was double-printed meaning there were more of them in circulation but its still surprisingly tougher to find in high grade than the #181 Green Ruth.

    If you look closely at each of the double prints of this card, youll notice that one version shows better clarity and focus than the other.

    But the value between the two isnt affected. Collectors will pay big money for either version as long as its in high grade.

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    American Caramel E106 Honus Wagner

    Estimated PSA 9 Mint Value: $100,000

    Dimensions: 1-1/2″ x 2-3/4″

    The E106 American Caramel cards are some of the scarcest Honus Wagner cards in the hobby .

    Seldom seen at auction, the 48 card set distributed by the American Caramel Co. of York, Pa. released some of the rarest type cards in existence.

    Their glossy obverse surface usually results in creasing and cracking issues making it tough to find these in high grade.

    Considered to be one of the more obscure Honus Wagner type cards its value continues to remain strong.

    T210 Old Mill Joe Jackson

    Estimated PSA 3.5 VG+ Value: $600,000

    Dimensions: 1-1/2″ x 2-5/8″

    The T210 Old Mill set features hundreds of minor league ballplayers that most people have never heard of before.

    But, Joe Jackson is instantly recognizable on this card depicting him as a member of the Cleveland Naps minor league team, the New Orleans Pelicans.

    After spending 1908 and 1909 with the Philadelphia Athletics, they quickly gave up on him and traded him to the Cleveland Naps for the 1910 season.

    What a mistake that was!

    Jackson dominated the minors that year and the Naps called him up late in the 1910 season.

    The rest is history.

    There are only a handful of known copies of this card in the hobby making it a rare and highly demanded issue.

    However, as with any colored borders, the surrounding red borders of this card are susceptible to wear making it very condition sensitive.

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    Roger Clemens Fleer Update Rc #u

    This card features a fresh-faced Roger Clemens in his Boston Red Sox uniform holding his pitchers glove. The ultra-simplistic design is reminiscent of the time with the majority taken up by the picture of Clemens, with simple blue and white borders and writing.

    The 1984 Fleer set is very desirable amongst collectors and is seen as one of the best sets of the 80s

    It is hard to say how many were made with estimates being in a rather wild range of 4,000 to 100,000.

    However, many there were, some issues with the original packaging means that finding them in mint 10 condition is increasingly rare. PSA says that just 6% of the 3,000 submitted to them have been in mint 10 conditions with a further 43% being graded 9.

    When they are found on the market mint 10 copies are valued at around $1600 with mint 9 copies worth about $350. Ungraded copies crop up too and can be purchased for around $35.

    Clemens has, rather inexplicably to some has not yet been elected to the Hall of Fame. If this eventually happens this card value could experience a boost.

    The most popular rookie card of one of the greatest ever baseball players. This Topps card features Henderson in action in yellow and white Oakland Athletics uniform, with the bench blurred in the background.

    The overall card design is good with some nice-looking graphics on the front and a printed autograph.

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    T205 Gold Border Christy Mathewson

    7 Most Valuable Baseball Rookie Cards From the 1980s

    Estimated PSA 9 Mint Value: $100,000

    Dimensions: 1-7/16″ x 2-5/8″

    This instantly recognizable card is easily one of Mathewsons most popular.

    Its a very tough card, too.

    The card features a great close-up of the star pitcher surrounded by the famous T205 gold borders.

    Matty was on the backside of his career in 1911 but still managed to lead the league in ERA and put up 26 wins.

    This is no doubt one of the most sought after cards of one of the games best pitchers of all time.

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    Topps #260 Reggie Jackson Rookie Card

    Estimated PSA 8 NM-MT Value: $3,500

    By the time you get into the PSA 9 and PSA 10 range, Reggie Jackson’s rookie card would exceed both the white and yellow letter versions of Mickey Mantle’s card at the top in this set.

    In February 2022, a PSA 9 example sold for $99,000, and in February 2021, a PSA 10 example breached the million-dollar mark with a whopping $1,005,600 price tag.

    Yet, with 562 examples of this card having received the PSA 8 grade at the time of this writing, there are just enough in circulation to water down the price enough to where the Mantles can outmatch it in the same grade.

    Still, as one of the most iconic cards in the hobby, this one is a must-have for any vintage collector.

    Jackson’s career was not without controversy, but there’s no debating that he was one of the greatest hitters this game has ever seen.

    His incredible power and towering home runs earned him the 1973 MVP, fourteen All-Star selections, five World Series rings and two World Series MVPs.

    And, don’t forget, Reggie had a reputation for coming up big when it mattered most: in the postseason.

    For that reason, he will always carry the nickname of “Mr. October.”

    Fleer #312 Carl Yastrzemski

    Estimated PSA 10 Gem Mint Value: $40

    Only one other player in MLB history, Brooks Robinson, has played as many seasons with one team as Carl Yastrzemski spent with the Boston Red Sox.

    And from 1961, when Yastrzemski entered the league, to 1977, when Robinson retired, the two crossed paths quite a bit as the Red Sox and Orioles squared off year after year.

    In 1982, Yaz was in his 22nd season with Boston and, at 42 years old, played well enough to earn his seventeenth selection to the All-Star team.

    Though he was a seven-time Gold Glover from years past, Yaz spent most of the 1982 season as the team’s designated hitter.

    In that role, Yaz slashed .275/.358/.431 with sixteen home runs, 72 RBI and 53 runs scored.

    His contributions helped the Red Sox to an 89-73 record and a third-place finish in the AL East as the Milwaukee Brewers finished six games in front of them to win the pennant.

    Yaz would retire after the 1983 season, having played in the second-most games in MLB history behind Pete Rose who played in 3,562.

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    Donruss #277 Ryne Sandberg

    Donruss was not the most successful trading card company. But the 1983 #277 Ryne Sandberg card is still a very popular option for Sandberg rookie cards. They tend to sell for approx $220 for a PSA 9.

    The card features a full-color photo of Sandberg at bat. You can clearly see the 23 below his left arm and the Cubs mascot on his left shoulder.

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