He belted a game-winning home run in his first big league game back in 2014 and since that time, he’s developed into one of baseball’s best players. There’s no doubt this native of Puerto Rico is a big deal to Cubs fans but Javy Baez rookie cards and pre-rookie issues have also become a hobby favorite.
Here’s a breakdown of some of his most popular issues and a current list of the hottest auctions on eBay.
Collecting Javier Baez Prospect Cards
Despite his first major issue cards coming out back in 2010, Baez did not get official rookie cards until the 2014 season. The first of them all hit in packs of 2010 Bowman AFLAC, but the certified autograph version of that card did not see the light of day until 2014 Bowman Chrome was released. Limited to 200 copies, it may be his first signed card chronologically, but there were plenty that were on the market beginning in 2011.
The most desirable of the cards issued that year for most folks is the 2011 Bowman Chrome Draft Prospect Autograph and the accompanying color parallels. Unnumbered versions can still be had for under $200 with the serial numbered versions selling for quite a bit more.
Those looking for an early signature of Javier Baez that may not break the bank can also consider those that came in releases from Leaf Trading Cards and Panini America. They may lack logos, but they do provide a more affordable alternative, especially the 2011 Donruss Elite Extra auto, which is numbered to 565.
Over the next three seasons, Baez cards were added to many releases and some of them featured him alongside other then-promising prospects that have turned into big leaguers like Francisco Lindor, Xander Bogaerts, and Carlos Correa. One issue stands out in particular: his 2014 Bowman Inception, which offers a great image from the season in which he made his big league debut.
Here Come the Rookie Cards
Topps was able to finally make a fully-licensed rookie card for Javier Baez in his Cubs uniform in 2015 and there are 17 different options on the market for hobbyists to track down.
By the same token, there are six different MLBPA-licensed cards from Panini America which some may consider to be rookie cards as well. While he does have rookie cards in 2015 Bowman and 2015 Bowman Chrome, the values on these cards are quite reasonable since they do not feature his signature. In 2015 Topps Heritage, he shares a multi-player rookie card with Jorge Soler which features the classic 1966 Topps design. He also makes appearances in long-standing brands such as the flagship Topps product, Stadium Club, Topps Chrome, Gypsy Queen, and Allen & Ginter, too.
Among his most popular rookie cards were those issued in 2015 Topps Triple Threads. Serial numbered with pieces of memorabilia and an autograph, they’re still relatively inexpensive.
As for the Javier Baez rookie cards issued by Panini America, there are options for every budget. The easiest to acquire come from brands such as Donruss, Diamond Kings, and Prizm, but there are two high-end cards that are worth consideration. Both have an autograph and a piece of memorabilia and while the one from Panini National Treasures is numbered out of 99, there is also lots of demand for that issued in packs of 2015 Immaculate Collection since only 49 copies were made.
Naturally, there are plenty of parallel versions for most of his rookie cards and nearly different 3,000 cards featuring his likeness have been released to date.
Below is a live list of the current most watched Javy Baez cards on eBay.