November 20, 2018

Hot Baseball Cards: The Postseason Edition

October 6, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

It is often said that art imitates life. That is especially true when it comes to baseball cards. Baseball’s annual Fall Classic provides an opportunity for fans to stock-up on their cardboard heroes, connecting them closer to the player, the game and the memories of October. The playoff run thus far has already seen dramatic individual performances, comebacks, and collapses. It’s the events that transpire between the chalked lines that influence a players cardboard popularity and with plenty of villains and underdogs, there are bound to be a few heroes along the way as well. Oftentimes the value of a player’s baseball cards takes on a life of their own depending on their performance in the postseason. Here is a list of players, and their cards, sure to see fluctuations in value, win or lose.

Justin Verlander

This year’s probable AL Cy Young award winner captured baseball’s unofficial pitching triple crown by leading the league in ERA, Wins, and Strikeouts.  At only 28, he already has 2 no-hitters to his credit and over 100 wins. If the Tigers manage to knock baseballs’ most expansive team out of the postseason, Verlander’s cards are sure to see an up-tick in value.

Key Rookie Cards:
2005 Bowman Chrome #331 (autographed), 2005 SP Authentic #137 (autographed), 2005 Ultimate Collection #239 (autographed)

Josh Hamilton

Capitalizing on the second chance he has been given in life and baseball, Hamilton’s 25 home runs and 94 RBI helped pace the Texas Rangers to a Western Division title. Fans and collectors love the long ball and the players who hit them. With a strong performance in the last month of the season, Hamilton showed he was locked and loaded for the playoff race. A timely go-ahead home run that aids in a playoff series victory will certainly spark interest in his cards.

Key Rookie Cards:
1999 Bowman #431, 1999 Bowman Chrome #431, 1999 Topps Chrome Traded #T66

Ryan Braun

Braun has been one of the hottest hitters of the postseason and his battle with Jose Reyes for the NL batting title came down to the last day, losing by mere percentage points. The homegrown Braun is a cornerstone of the Brewers franchise and the team’s success is a direct result of his performance. As the Hebrew Hammer goes, so go the Brewers. Despite playing in a small market, Brewers fans and collectors are passionate and his cards have already seen an increase in value as a result of the batting title race.

Key Rookie Cards:
2005 Bowman Chrome Draft #168 (autographed), 2005 Bowman Sterling #RB (autographed), 2005 Topps Chrome Update #198

Prince Fielder

If Ryan Braun is one cornerstone of the Brewers, Fielder is the other. Combining to be one of the deadliest 3-4 hitters in the game, Fielder’s dominating power is a staple for the team. Playing in all 162 games this season, Fielder amassed 38 home runs and 120 RBI. While fans have long appreciated his play, being part of a Division title and a potentially deep run in the playoffs will surely help the value of Fielder’s cardboard collectibles.

Key Rookie Cards:
2005 SP Authentic #159 (autographed), 2005 SPx #153 (autographed), 2005 Upper Deck Update #183 (autographed)

Ryan Howard

Howard is out to silence critics about his sporadic play in the postseason. Despite hitting an impressive .318 in last year’s playoffs, his 12 strikeouts came at seemingly crucial points in the game. One of baseball’s most feared hitters, Howard tallied 33 home runs and 116 RBI in the regular season. Despite the Phillies being regulars in the postseason the last several years, a solid performance and some timely hitting will help cement Howard as the face of the franchise and further drive demand for his cards.

Key Rookie Cards:
2003 Bowman’s Best #RH (autographed), 2003 Bowman Chrome Draft #138, 2003 Donruss Elite Extra Edition #47

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