Sports Collectors Daily

Hottest Willie Mays Baseball Cards

The graceful stride of long ago has been replaced by the guiding hand of an aide.  We all wind up in that arena someday, if we’re lucky.  But when those legs were toned and those arms could turn a fastball into a missle…  

It’s those memories that send collectors in search of vintage Willie Mays cards on eBay or scouring the tables at a card show for more.

In his familiar number 24, Mays amazed baseball fans with dazzling catches and tape measure home runs. A career .302 hitter, Mays hit 660 home runs and drove in more than 1900 runs during his 22 year career.  He was an icon to New York Giants fans in the 1950s and San Francisco backers once the team moved west in 1958.

Mays won 12 Gold Gloves as an outfielder during his time with the Giants, tying him for the most ever with Roberto Clemente. Mays’ wizardry in the outfield, turned in a career fielding averaging of .981, to go along with 195 assists from center field.

In 1972, Mays was traded to the New York Mets, bringing his career full circle. In his last two seasons with the Mets, Mays registered as the oldest regular position player in Major League Baseball. Unfortunately, his best hitting years were behind him, although his fielding percentage was still on par with what he had produced years earlier.

His gorgeous 1951 Bowman rookie card is considered among the greatest of all post-War issues.  While Mays rookie cards can be found pretty regularly, near mint and better examples aren’t as plentiful and have been rocketing upward in step with other vintage Hall of Famers. A graded NM/MT 8 that you could have bought for under $10,000 five years ago cost one recent bidder $51,875.

Mays was a constant for Topps, once the company produced his 1952 rookie card (#261). He became fast friends with Topps executive Sy Berger, who watched him perform his magic at the Polo Grounds as the bubble gum card maker was becoming a major player in the bubble gum card business.

He regularly appeared in Topps sets from 1952-1973, both as the primary subject, on In Action and multi-player cards and, of course, on some star-packed League Leader cards during his prime.

There are several Mays’ cards that won’t break the bank, but collectors should expect to spend a more substantial amount to obtain some of the best Mays’ cards available.

Both were sensational but Mays’ Bowman rookie card has long lagged behind that of fellow 1951 rookie Mickey Mantle. Currently, Mays rookie cards in near mint (7) grades usually sell for less than half of what Mantle’s rookie cards so.  Does that mean Mays rookies are undervalued?  Quite possibly.  However, there are others to consider, too.

Here’s the list of the 25 hottest Willie Mays cards on eBay right now.

1951 Bowman Set Break #305 Willie Mays RC PSA 2 GOOD
20 bids - Price: $460.00 - Watchers: 53
Item #312239649560
1956 Topps Baseball Willie Mays #130 PSA 8 GIANTS HOF NM-MT SET BREAK
22 bids - Price: $1,136.00 - Watchers: 37
Item #202432998491
1959 TOPPS #50 WILLIE MAYS (HOF) SAN FRANCISCO GIANTS SET BREAK PSA 8 TOUGH CARD
13 bids - Price: $406.00 - Watchers: 37
Item #312238741582
1960 Topps # 200 Willie Mays SIGNED PSA/DNA 9 Auto - San Francisco Giants
14 bids - Price: $127.50 - Watchers: 36
Item #292723731869
Original 1951 Bowman baseball card-Willie Mays #305-New York Giants-RC
8 bids - Price: $786.00 - Watchers: 36
Item #362436731712
1953 TOPPS #244 WILLIE MAYS SHORT PRINT SGC 88 NM-MT = PSA 8 RARE HIGH GRADE
10 bids - Price: $2,125.00 - Watchers: 29
Item #163261622551
1953 Topps 244 Willie Mays
7 bids - Price: $142.74 - Watchers: 27
Item #183435956572
1953 TOPPS #244 WILLIE MAYS GIANTS EX+ to EX-MT
26 bids - Price: $332.00 - Watchers: 26
Item #142937716353
1964 Topps #150 Willie Mays PSA 6 Centered High End
7 bids - Price: $43.00 - Watchers: 24
Item #192656044490
1953 Topps Set Break #244 Willie Mays LOW GRADE (crease)
16 bids - Price: $205.38 - Watchers: 23
Item #312237164960
1969 Topps Set Break #190 Willie Mays NR-MINT
22 bids - Price: $90.00 - Watchers: 22
Item #132780553810
2005 PLAYOFF PRIME CUTS AUTO #23/25 WILLIE MAYS
12 bids - Price: $152.50 - Watchers: 22
Item #332802176465
1957 Topps #10 HOF San Francisco Giant Willie Mays Graded BVG 7.5 NM+ Very Clean
17 bids - Price: $147.50 - Watchers: 21
Item #163258614878
Willie Mays 1953 Topps Baseball #244 New York Giants BVG 2
12 bids - Price: $119.74 - Watchers: 20
Item #362435986913
1965 Topps #250 Willie Mays HOF San Francisco Giants PSA 5 EX
13 bids - Price: $25.00 - Watchers: 20
Item #372434497040
1956 Topps Set Break #130 - Willie Mays LOW GRADE (crease)
9 bids - Price: $7.50 - Watchers: 19
Item #132776684305
1953 Topps #244 Willie Mays PSA 3 MK HOF!! JUST GRADED
11 bids - Price: $56.00 - Watchers: 19
Item #283162589338
WILLIE MAYS Signed Autograph 2005 Donruss Signature Series Bat Jersey Card MINT
10 bids - Price: $119.50 - Watchers: 19
Item #332804254929
WILLIE MAYS Autographed 2005 Donruss Signature Series Card #13/25 - NM-MT
6 bids - Price: $9.50 - Watchers: 18
Item #332804513457
2003 TOPPS LEGENDS WILLIE MAYS AUTO #TTWM
11 bids - Price: $81.00 - Watchers: 18
Item #382561002901
1953 TOPPS #244 WILLIE MAYS CSA 8.5 NM-MT+ Sharp! VERY RARE HIGH GRADE
9 bids - Price: $226.74 - Watchers: 18
Item #382564818505
1955 TOPPS #194 WILLIE MAYS GIANTS NM to NM+
6 bids - Price: $70.00 - Watchers: 17
Item #132780572653
1955 Topps WILLIE MAYS baseball card #194 ****STUNNING CARD**** *NO CREASES* WOW
9 bids - Price: $214.50 - Watchers: 17
Item #192658130539
1997 Topps 1960 Commemrative Autograph Auto Willie Mays # 12
3 bids - Price: $10.50 - Watchers: 17
Item #202433410268
2018 18 WILLIE MAYS LEAF HISTORY OF BASEBALL CUT SIGNATURE AUTO #ED 8/33
8 bids - Price: $48.00 - Watchers: 17
Item #223148744451