Date of Birth: 10/16/1992
Rookie Card Year: 2012
Investment Rating: 8.5
As you may be aware, a lot of hype surrounds Bryce Harper. An outfielder for the Philadelphia Phillies, he was selected with the first-overall pick by the Washington Nationals in the 2010 MLB Draft. Official Bryce Harper rookie cards did not come until 2012 products. These, along with Bryce Harper prospect cards, remain some of his most popular trading cards.
Despite some inconsistency and injuries, Harper has already put forth several stretches of greatness and is one of the biggest stars of MLB and the hobby. He won National League Rookie of the Year honors in 2012 and followed that up with an NL MVP in 2015 for the Nationals, and an NLCS MVP for the Phillies.
All of the Bryce Harper cards that came out prior to his MLB debut in April of 2012 are considered prospect cards. His very first releases were issued in Upper Deck's USA Baseball products, although his most popular prospect cards are from 2011 Bowman Baseball.
For further details on his earliest cards, check out our article on the Top Bryce Harper Rookie and Prospect Cards.
Bryce Harper Rookie Card Checklist
Shop on eBay or track prices using the links below. Bolded sets go to full product profiles.
2012 Bowman Chrome Bryce Harper RC #214
A straightforward Bryce Harper rookie, this card is more popular for its many Refractor parallels. For those on a tighter budget simply looking for an official rookie card of the phenom outfielder, 2012 Bowman Chrome certainly fits the bill.
2012 Bowman Draft Picks & Prospects Bryce Harper RC #10
A cheap, entry-level option, the 2012 Bowman Draft Bryce Harper rookie is overlooked by many. Still, it has a nice, clean design. The card also has several parallel versions that garner solid prices.
2012 Bowman Platinum Bryce Harper RC #56
While the 2012 Bowman Platinum Bryce Harper rookie card isn't rare, for those who like a little shine, it's a reasonably-priced option from an attractive set. The card further stands out thanks to the sharp action photo of Harper running.
2012 Bowman Sterling Bryce Harper RC #1
Although Harper's 2012 Bowman Sterling rookie isn't numbered, autographed or souped-up in any way, collectors shouldn't dismiss it. The high-end set has just one base card per pack, making it a tough pull. Not accounting for the many Refractor parallels, you've got what's likely one of the rarest base Bryce Harper rookie cards.
2012 Panini National Treasures Bryce Harper RC #160 Jersey #/99
Part of the Rated Rookies subset, this high-end Bryce Harper rookie card comes with a massive game-used jersey piece. Some are single-color swatches while others do have multiple colors. Although it's still one of his most expensive rookies, the price is somewhat reasonable given the high cost of 2012 National Treasures Baseball.
2012 Panini Prizm Bryce Harper RC #152
It didn't take long for Prizm to become one of Panini's most popular brands. The 2012 Panini Prizm Bryce Harper rookie card is cheaply priced, but the Refractor-esque parallels garner a lot of attention and value.
The fact that this set wasn't released until after the 2013 season started may prevent some from considering it as a rookie, but it's still a solid choice for those on a budget. Harper is also featured in the Prizm USA Baseball insert set.
2012 Panini Signature Series Bryce Harper RC #18
While not numbered, the 2012 Panini Signature Series Bryce Harper is another of his tougher first-year cards. Coming from a hit-focused product, base cards aren't all that plentiful. Increasing its appeal, the intense, close-up image helps it stand out from other Bryce Harper rookie cards. However, because Panini only has an MLBPA license, the card does not have team logos.
2012 Playoff Prime Cuts Bryce Harper RC #10 Jersey #/99
Extremely limited, the 2012 Playoff Prime Cuts Bryce Harper relic card is tough to locate. The lack of MLB logos no doubt hurts the overall appeal of the card. But for fans of low-numbered stuff, this may be a bargain, if you can find one.
2012 Topps Baseball Bryce Harper RC #661 SP
A last-second addition to the 2012 Topps Series 2 set, the flagship Bryce Harper rookie card is also a short print. Although not extremely rare, it is in high demand due to set collectors looking to finish their 2012 Topps Baseball collections. There is also an autographed parallel and several image variations. Harper had later 2012 flagship cards in Update but this was the first.
Other #661 versions include his Complete Set variation with a gray uniform and blue batting helmet. This tends to be one of the most common choices on the secondary market and much more affordable.
Harper also has a screaming image variation from the factory set.
2012 Topps Mini Bryce Harper RC #661
Looking for a Bryce Harper rookie sleeper? His 2012 Topps Mini card might be it. Outside of a few boxes issued at the National in Baltimore, the set was originally only available online and the small print run sold out in about a month. Channeling 1975 Topps Mini Baseball, 2012 Topps Mini is simply a shrunken version of the base set. And while Harper was a short print in 2012 Topps Series 2 Baseball, he isn't here. The tiny card is just as common as every other base card.
2012 Topps Allen & Ginter Bryce Harper RC #12
The first readily available Bryce Harper rookie card, 2012 Topps Allen & Ginter features another classic design from the brand. An artistically rendered Harper poses with his bat, surrounded by a gold border. The card also has several different mini parallels.
2012 Topps Archives Bryce Harper RC #241
The first official Bryce Harper rookie card released, 2012 Archives gives collectors an extremely short-printed option. Harper is pictured using the 1984 Topps Baseball design and the same look is featured on his Fan Favorites autograph. Inserted as a redemption, the rare autograph is signed on-card.
2012 Topps Chrome Bryce Harper RC #196
Featuring chromium, the 2012 Topps Chrome Bryce Harper rookie is especially great for parallel collectors as Refractors come in several colors. Harper also has a Rookie Autograph variation and a base set variation, both of which are rare. Of all the base variations in 2012 Topps Chrome Baseball, Harper is the only player to have a regular and Refractor version.
2012 Topps Finest Bryce Harper RC #73
Another choice with a metallic design, the 2012 Topps Finest Bryce Harper rookie is the top card in the base set. That said, because it's not a short print, prices aren't too bad. The Bryce Harper Rookie Autograph and rare Refractor parallels represent the chase element.
2012 Topps Five Star Bryce Harper RC #1 #/80
The 2012 Topps Five Star card for Bryce Harper doesn't need much to make it one of his priciest rookie cards. Coming from a product that costs hundreds per pack, the rookie is limited to just 80 copies. The card itself is somewhat plain from a design perspective, but that might not be a bad thing. Being Harper's rarest official rookie card, it will always have an audience.
2012 Topps Heritage High Number Bryce Harper RC #H650
Offered as a box set sold only through Topps' online store, this is not the easiest Bryce Harper rookie card to track down. Limited to 1,000 copies, the 2012 Heritage line is very popular with set builders. That means an already small supply of cards is that much tougher to come by as a single.
2012 Topps Triple Threads Bryce Harper RC #129 Autograph Jersey #/99
2012 Topps Triple Threads includes the first official Bryce Harper rookie card to have either an autograph or memorabilia swatch. Numbered to just 99, it's also extremely rare. In addition to an on-card signature, the relic pieces are set behind die-cut windows that note both his position and number.
Bryce Harper Prospect Card Checklist
Shop for Key Bryce Harper Prospect Cards:
- 2008-09 Upper Deck USA Baseball #47
- 2009 Bowman AFLAC #BH
- 2009 Upper Deck Signature Stars USA National Team Future Watch Jersey Autographs #30 #/899
- 2009 Upper Deck Signature Stars USA Star Prospects #USA-8
- 2009 Upper Deck Signature Stars USA Star Prospects Jerseys #USA-8
- 2009 Upper Deck Signature Stars USA Star Prospects Signatures #USA-8
- 2009-10 Upper Deck USA Baseball #USA-30
- 2009-10 Upper Deck USA Baseball Autograph #USA-83 #/502
- 2009-10 Upper Deck USA Baseball 18U National Team Big Sigs #BH #/75
- 2010 Bowman Chrome 18U USA Baseball #18BC8
- 2010 Bowman Chrome 18U USA Baseball Buyback Autograph #18BC8 #/100
- 2010 Bowman Draft AFLAC Autographs #9 #/230
- 2011 Bowman Prospects #BP1
- 2011 Bowman Prospects Autographs #BP1
- 2011 Bowman Chrome Prospects #BCP1
- 2011 Bowman Platinum Prospects #BPP1
- 2011 Bowman Platinum Prospects Refractor Autographs #BH
Bryce Harper Autographed Memorabilia Buying Guide
Below you will find examples of what an authentic Bryce Harper autograph 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. Some of the trusted sources within the sports memorabilia market include the following companies: PSA, JSA, Steiner, Tristar and Mounted Memories.
Early Bryce Harper Cut Signature Exemplar
Early Bryce Harper Key Signature Attributes: An authentic Bryce Harper signature autograph will exhibit several distinguishing characteristics. Regardless of the type of item or when it was signed, look for the following signature features:
- Bryce Harper's signature primarily consists of the initials of his first and last name.
- Both equal in size, the letter "B" shows a much larger bottom loop than top and is open at the bottom.
- The letter "H" consists of one vertical, left-leaning line, with the parallel line resembling a capital letter "C."
- His last name does include characters to imply the remaining letters and looks like a number "7" with a long line extending to the right away from the top.
- Harper typically, but not always, includes his jersey number as an inscription as well as the Bible verse Luke 1:37.
Over the years, Bryce Harper has simplified his signature even more, especially on his baseball cards. A small ridge has appeared in the bottom loop on his "B" in many cases. He has also taken to signing just "BH" instead of his longer signature.
Signed Baseball Pricing:
Signed Bat Pricing:
Signed Jersey Pricing:
Signed Photograph Pricing:
Dig deeper into Bryce Harper cards and memorabilia with the following guides and articles:
- Top Bryce Harper Rookie and Prospect Cards
- 2011 Bowman Bryce Harper Superfractor Soars on eBay
- The Bryce Harper Visual Guide to 2011 Bowman Chrome Baseball
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