Love him or hate him, Jose Bautista is one of the top premier power hitters in the game today.
While he didn’t come up as a overhyped prospect, the veteran outfielder has adapted nicely in the big leagues, seemingly playing better with a chip on his shoulder to prove his worth.
After somewhat of a down year last season due to injuries, Joey Bats is looking to once again capture his peak form to the delight of Toronto Blue Jays’ fans.
Here’s our selection for his top three rookie cards.
2002 Topps Chrome Traded #T180
A nice shiny Topps Chrome card in good condition (without any chipping at the borders) would make a great addition to the set of a Jose Bautista card collector.
He’s noticeably a lot younger and leaner during his Pittsburgh Pirate days, but it’s just another reminder how his game has evolved.
There are variations of this card, namely the Topps Traded version with a yellow/orange border, which is significantly cheaper and readily available.
Value (as of March 2017): $80 (BGS Graded 9.5)
2002 Bowman Chrome #348 (SP)
This card has the Bowman Chrome brand name going for it and it’s labelled as a short print.
It also features a shot of him playing defense (as an infielder), which isn’t often the case these days as his current sports cards like to display his power at the plate (like last year’s infamous bat flip issued by Topps).
While this autograph doesn’t come with a real autograph, there is one printed on the card if that’s something you’re in to.
Value (as of March 2017): $70 (PSA Graded GEM MT 10)
2002 Bowman Heritage #40
Very affordable and accessible, his Bowman Heritage rookie card also has his autograph printed on the card.
It’s probably not worth getting graded but it’s a nice clean card to add for a fraction of the price of his other, more notable rookie cards.
Value (as of March 2017): $5 (Ungraded)