Success in the postseason often generates even more buzz for players who have enjoyed tremendous regular seasons. Austin Riley rookie cards and prospect issues have been a target of collectors for a while now, but his heroics on the big stage have fans as well as collectors looking for something tangible related to the Atlanta Braves’ newest star.
Riley is quickly becoming a fan favorite, with “MVP” chants commonplace at Braves home games. He’s the latest in a string of young standouts to emerge from the last few MLB rookie classes.
Over the last 30 days, over 3,300 individual Austin Riley cards have sold on eBay for a total of more than $119,000 and an average cost of $36. Most of his rookie cards and 2015 Bowman prospect issues are up 25-75 percent from a month ago.
The Riley Record
The Braves felt Riley was a potential star when they selected him 41st overall in the 2015 MLB draft.
The Memphis, Tennessee native certainly has produced in his tenure with the big club after earning numerous accolades on the minor league circuit. Riley took home Hank Aaron Player of the Year honors for the best player in the Braves minor league system in 2018. He split time between Mississippi and Triple A Gwinnett that season.
Called up to the big club in May of 2019, Riley homered in his first game and later became just the fourth player in history to reel off a string of eight in 16 games,
It wasn’t long before the big league club had to make him pack and head for Atlanta. An adjustment at the plate spurned a breakout in 2021. He finished the regular season with a .303 average, 33 home runs, 107 RBIs, and a .898 OPS–one of the best seasons a young Braves player has ever had.
Perhaps his coming out party took place when he walked off the Dodgers in Game One of the NLCS.
Atlanta fans have long counted on the consistency of Freddie Freeman but it seems the young gun is ready to assume the role of most feared hitter. He might just fill the void left when a fella named Chipper retired a few years ago.
Riley’s first appearance on cards actually came during his high school career in Memphis when he appeared in multiple products issued by Leaf Trading Cards in 2014.
After being drafted the following year, he was part of the ever popular Bowman Chrome, with both paper cards and Refractor parallels as well as autographed cards.
Most of the highest prices for Riley’s cards have come in recent days with a BGS 10 2015 Bowman Chrome Orange Refractor (#15/25) bringing $5,500 and a BGS 9.5 Gold Refractor (#25/50) netting $2,100.
Riley Rookie Cards
Riley appears in several different Topps sets dating to his 2019 including Topps Update (#US100), Chrome, Heritage High Numbers, Archives and Topps Holiday, with parallels and autographs cards sprinkled throughout. His first rookie card was an on-demand Topps Now, issued the day after his big league debut.
Among the big sellers during his 2021 postseason run: a Topps Chrome Red Refractor parallel (#4/5) PSA 10 that sold for $2,000 and a PSA 10 Chrome Update Gold (# to 50) Refractor Autograph that changed hands for $1,400. Most common base ungraded Riley rookie cards can still be had for no more than a few dollars, however.
Below is a list of the 50 most watched Austin Riley card auctions on eBay right now. You can see all of his cards for sale and auction here.