Cal Ripken Jr.
Rookie Card Year: 1982
Investment Rating: 7.5
Cal Ripken Jr. is a player that immediately brings to mind the greatness of baseball. The "Iron Man" carries credibility with collectors who still long for the days of Ruth and DiMaggio. He's also young enough that younger collectors can appreciate what he accomplished, making Cal Ripken Jr. cards coveted by a big cross-section of fans.
While Cal Ripken Jr. cards and memorabilia sell at strong prices, there is little likelihood for significant increases as he gets older. The last big milestone was his induction into the Hall of Fame in 2007, and values should hold steady over the long-term.
Ripken only has three true rookie cards, each of which sell for reasonable amounts. As with most older rookie cards, graded versions tend to sell the most consistently with the gem mint cards going for hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars. Another card from his rookie season, the 1982 Topps Traded Baseball #98T, is also strongly pursued by collectors but is not considered a true rookie because Ripekn was already featured in the main 1982 Topps Baseball set.
Cal Ripken Jr. Rookie Card Checklist
The 1982 Donruss Cal Ripken rookie portrays a classic close-up shot of the young star. Centering issues make extremely high-grade copies of the card somewhat difficult to find. The simple design does not detract from the card's appeal. It is one of the best Cal Ripken Jr. cards.
The 1982 Fleer design is even more basic. It's to the point that it is hard to distinguish as a real baseball card. Not even the brand name is present on the front. Other than the photo, the only thing on the front is a thin orange border and name plate. Of the three rookie Cal Ripken Jr. cards, this is the least desirable.
Although this card has the highest book value of the three rookie Cal Ripken Jr. cards, the fact that he shares it with two other players who accomplished nothing hurts its overall appeal. Instead, many collectors have adopted Ripken's 1982 Topps Traded card as his most desirable, even if it's not a true rookie card.
CAL RIPKEN ROOKIE #21 1982 TOPPS
1982 DONRUSS BASEBALL #405 ORIOLES CAL RIPKEN Jr. ROOKIE CARD NRMT [X#21]
1982 TOPPS RC ROOKIE #21 CAL RIPKEN MINT
1982 FLEER CAL RIPKEN ROOKIE CARD #176
Cal Ripken Jr. Autographed Memorabilia Buying Guide
Below you will find an example of what Cal Ripken Jr.'s authentic signature looks like. This can be used as a first point of reference for determining the legitimacy of autograph memorabilia, but is not a substitute for having your items authenticated by a well-respected professional autograph authentication company.
Signed Baseball Pricing:
Average eBay Sales Price: $90
Lowest Amazon Price: $128.95
Signed Jersey Pricing
Average eBay Sales Price: $175
Lowest Amazon Price: $134.95
Signed 8x10 Photo Pricing
Average eBay Sales Price: $80
Lowest Amazon Price: $113.95