MLB rookie cards have been prized collector's items for decades now, and it’s a passion that is here to stay. What mightsurprise seasoned collectors is the massive influx of new entrants chasing down the latest rookies. Which rookie cards should youlook out for and how? Find out with this Skybox Collectibles guide!
Why Rookie Cards?
A baseball rookie card is the first souvenir of a player’s entry into the big leagues. This affects collectors in two ways:
- Sentimentality:No diehard MLB fan would ever give up the chance to go back and pick up the Topps Vladimir Guerrero Jr. card from the 2019 baseball season if given the opportunity. Fans are always on the prowl for the next great player, and that makes every rookie card an unmissable opportunity.
- Value:Rookie cards are appreciating assets with no real cap on their final value. Every single homerun can cause rookie cards to skyrocket in value overnight, giving enterprising collectors the chance to capitalize massively on an early investment. This is why tons of beginners and older collectors are always on the lookout for the best picks every season – here’s what to watch for.
Evaluating Rookie Cards
- Year:A second-year Lars Nootbaar card will never fetch the same prices as one from the original 2022 season. Remember, an MLB rookie card might not look as great as the ones that come after it, but its value will always eclipse its successors purely based on the vintage.
- Players:Each player’s individual skill also affects the value of an upcoming baseball rookie card. Are they just gaining popularity because of a lucky streak, or have they consistently been outperforming since the minor leagues? Keeping an eye on a prospect’s long-term stats can help you make these decisions.
- Condition & Availability:A difference of just 1 point in a card’s PSA rating can equate to thousands of dollars in value. Even the most prized retro baseball card won’t fetch much in a resale if it’s rated at a PSA 2. If possible, take the time to personally inspect an MLB rookie card before going through with a purchase if you’re unfamiliar with the seller.
The 3 Biggest Rising Stars
#1: Termarr Johnson - 2022
Termarr Johnson made a splash in 2022 with an explosive start at the Pittsburgh Pirates. This shortstop is considered to be a part of the 20 most valuable rookies in the entire MLB, and his baseball rookie card reflects that value. His standard rookie cards graded at a PSA 10 start at about $13, with the autographed and refractor versions alreadyfetching an impressive $1956 on COMC.
The MLB already considers this hitter a potential future all-star, and eagle-eyed fans should keep an eye out for this baseball card’s appreciating value. Collectors can snag Termarr Johnson’s rookie card with the 2022 Bowman case.
#2: Druw Jones - 2023
The most valuable MLB rookie cards often come with their own fascinating storyline, and Druw Jones is no different. Druw Jones’ popularity as a rookie stems both from his skill anddynastic greatness. One of the newest rookies in the MLB, Druw has already been ranked as a #9 all-time prospect in the league as a hitter for the Arizona Diamondbacks.
Druw’s popularity is being helped, in part, by his connection to his father – major league star Andruw Jones. He might not have had the best start to the season, but this underdog’s popularity speaks for itself. Grab this baseball rookie card from the 2023 Bowman Baseball cards.
#3: Francisco Álvarez - 2023
The Mets might be infamous for underperforming in the big games, but Álvarez is no slouch. Francisco Álvarez is also a part of the 2023 Bowman cohort of rookies, and his incredible performance has made him a fast favorite. Coming in with a whopping 25 home runs in his debut season, his autographed MLB rookie cards are already commanding upwards of $2,000 in trades.
Find Your Ultimate Baseball Rookie Card
Druw, Francisco, or an undiscovered star – you never really know what you’re going to unbox in that next sports card box. Keep an eye out for card conditions and have your MLB stats handy when you’re out there looking for a rookie card, and you’ll find a future all-star in no time.
Head over to Skybox Collectibles to find everything from retro cases to the newest sports cards to pre-orders all in one place. Snagging the best new baseball rookies cards is easier than ever with our fast and free USA shipping on orders over $100.