Buster Posey is arguably the best catcher of his era, helping the San Francisco Giants win three World Series titles over a five-year period. He is a near-certainty to enter the Hall of Fame when his name appears on the ballot. As a top-five selection in the 2008 MLB Draft, Buster Posey cards have been in-demand with collectors from the moment they hit the shelves. While Posey has scores of cards available, this list narrows the field down to several of the top options for your collection.
The seven-time All-Star spent his entire 12-year MLB career as a catcher with the San Francisco Giants. The team selected the backstop from Florida State, where he was one of the most decorated college baseball players to don the garnet and gold. His impact on the Giants was immediate as the team won the 2010 World Series during his first full season. Posey took home the National League Rookie of the Year Award that same year. In 2012, Posey led the Giants to a second World Series title, along with winning the National League MVP and batting crown. The Giants and Posey claimed a third World Series championship in 2014. Buster closed out his career in 2021 by guiding San Francisco to the best record in baseball and producing one of the best offensive seasons of his career.
Manufacturers jumped at adding Buster Posey cards to their later releases in 2008, placing the top prospect on several different checklists during his first year in professional baseball. Posey had a limited number of pre-rookie cards created in 2008 and 2009, but the debut of the official Buster Posey rookie cards in 2010 marked the beginning of a decade-plus run of prominence in the hobby. In recent years, the demand and price of his cards have surged, but there are still plenty of great possibilities awaiting those who collect this future Cooperstown resident.
Top 10 Buster Posey Baseball Cards
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10. 2008 Grandstand Salem-Keizer Volcanoes Update Buster Posey
The overall quantity of Buster Posey's Minor League cards is limited due to the fact that he only played one full season in the Giants system (2009). He did appear in 10 games in 2008 after the Giants made him the fifth overall selection in that year's draft. Three of those games were played with the Salem-Keizer Volcanoes of the Northwest League. The team celebrated Posey's brief stay by issuing a small update set of six cards. The distribution was obviously limited and there are few of these available on the secondary market. Typically they can only be found with the team set.
While the Salem-Keizer Volcanoes card does not have the instant recognition of other early Buster Posey cards, the aforementioned factors have given the card a degree of popularity. Collectors should note that the Salem-Keizer Volcanoes have milked Posey's short stint with the team over the years, issuing several other cards with this same picture, but with different border designs.
9T. 2011 Topps World Series Champions Buster Posey #WCAR-BP Autograph Relic #/50
The biggest contribution that Buster Posey made to the San Francisco Giants was helping the franchise win three World Series titles, ending a championship drought of more than 50 years. There were numerous cards issued to celebrate Posey's postseason feats, but none are better than the trio of World Series Champions autographs that Topps issued in the first series of the 2011 and 2013 flagship baseball sets. The cards were tough pulls and remain in high demand with Buster Posey and Giants collectors. As a result, they are not easy to locate.
The first World Series Champions autograph was issued in 2011 Topps Series 1 with a print run limited to just 50 copies. Posey does have a relic-only card, but the autographed version is far more desirable.
9T. 2013 Topps World Series Champions Buster Posey #WCAR-BP Autograph Relic #/50
Buster Posey earned his second World Series ring in the fall of 2012. The Giants improbable run included coming back from a 3-1 deficit against the Cardinals in the National League Championship Series and beating a heavily-favored Detroit Tigers team in the World Series. Topps celebrated the win by issuing two Buster Posey autographs in 2013 Topps Series 1 packs. The more desirable card is the World Series Champions Autographed Relic. With just 50 copies, the card features multi-colored patch pieces.
9T. 2013 Topps World Series Champions Buster Posey #WCA-BP Autograph #/50
Topps also issued an autographed World Series Champions card of Posey in 2013 with no relic. Naturally, there is some price difference between the two 2013 cards, but both are tough finds and in high demand with collectors. The Cooperstown-bound catcher has been featured on many low-print autographs, but these two are amongst his more highly sought-after signatures.
Posey did receive a World Champions card in 2015 Topps Series 1, but the card is a single relic. While this card has some degree of value with collectors, the 2011 and 2013 World Champions autographs are far more popular.
8. 2010 Bowman Buster Posey RC #208
Buster Posey has a few licensed rookie cards that remain available for just a few dollars. His 2010 Bowman card fits into that category, but several factors set this card apart from his other budget rookies. First, 2010 Bowman was produced during the brand's stretch of black-framed cards that ran from 2001 until 2011. Imperfections are easy to spot with dark borders, which can make this card a tough find in mint condition.
Posey's 2010 Bowman card also has a group of parallels that are reasonable in price and not too difficult to locate. Outside of one-of-ones and printing plates, collectors can find Blue (#/520) and Orange (#/250) bordered cards. Finally, there is a Gold parallel with no serial numbering. Topps seeded the Gold parallels at one per pack, so the production quantity is not small.
7T. 2008 Donruss Elite Extra Edition Buster Posey Autograph #177 #/934
Although Cooperstown seems inevitable, Posey has already gained entry into one Hall of Fame during his baseball career. The former Seminole was inducted into the Florida State Athletic Department's Hall in 2018. Posey is considered one of the top baseball players in the program's long and illustrious history. While playing in Tallahassee, he captured nearly every major college award, including Baseball America's Collegiate Baseball Player of the Year in 2008.
Panini naturally gave Buster Posey a prominent place in their NCAA-licensed baseball product, 2008 Donruss Elite Extra Edition. The Giants great has two different autographs in the product with the first falling in the base rookie autographs subset. This set features the signatures of recently drafted players. Buster Posey is the standout name, but Giants fans can also find the first certified autograph of Pablo Sandoval. One nice feature of this Elite autograph is that it has one of the more generous print runs at 934 copies. Collectors looking for a challenge can try to track down two tough parallels: Turn of the Century (#/50) and the die-cut Aspirations (#/25).
7T. 2008 Donruss Elite Extra Edition Collegiate PatchesBuster Posey Autograph #/250 #CP-3
Buster Posey also made an appearance in the 2008 Elite Extra Edition Collegiate Patches set. The popular manufactured patch autographs ran from 2007 until 2010 when Panini started using actual uniform patches. The combination of a giant college logo and a hard-signed autograph is aesthetically pleasing to the eye and extraordinarily popular with team-oriented college baseball collectors. Posey's early autograph has a full print run of 250 signed copies.
Panini has produced more Buster Posey cards with a Florida State uniform in recent years, but the two autographs from EEE remain his most popular cards recognizing his excellent amateur career. College baseball collectors looking for Buster Posey autographs should note that he does have USA Baseball autographs, but they were produced during his professional career. While at Florida State, Posey never played for the College National Team, only the U18 and World Baseball Classic teams.
6. 2010 Topps Heritage Buster Posey RC #114
The 10th installment of Topps Heritage in 2010 borrows its design from 1961 Topps and the product is a treasure trove for Buster Posey and Giants collectors. The set features official rookie cards of Buster Posey and Madison Bumgarner, along with several different autographs of Giants Hall of Fame pitcher Juan Marichal. Marichal's rookie card is one of the most important cards in 1961 Topps.
The Buster Posey 2010 Heritage card has long been one of his most popular rookies on the secondary market. The design of this card has added appeal, especially when paired with a great action shot. This Buster Posey rookie card falls in the front half of the checklist and has a full production run. That means collectors are not paying an extra premium for a short print. Over time, it has become one of the top first-year cards from the successful Topps Heritage product. Unlike his Bowman rookie, the days of finding raw copies of this Posey Heritage card for a few dollars are long gone.
There are other Posey cards in 2010 Heritage worth consideration, but they have limited production and larger price tags. If you are just starting a collection of Buster Posey cards, these could be tougher cards to land.
The first is his 2010 Topps Heritage Chrome rookie card. Heritage Chrome is not a true parallel set, as it is limited to selected cards within the base set. The Heritage Chrome cards insertion was split between Topps Heritage and Topps Chrome, with the Posey card being found in packs of Topps Heritage. The serial numbers follow the usual pattern from other Heritage sets with the Chrome copies numbered to the design year, which, in this case, is 1,961 copies.
The more difficult parallels are the Refractors, with a print run of 561 copies, and the Black Bordered Refractors (61 copies).
Posey also appeared twice on the autograph checklist in 2010 Topps Heritage. One of the cards is a solo signature card from Real One Autographs. The Posey autograph was not short-printed, but many of these cards have already found homes in collections and are not likely to reappear on the secondary market. This is one of Posey's toughest certified autographs. There is also a red parallel numbered to 61, which is very scarce.
Lastly, if you are a Giants collector looking for a great card featuring the autographs of two franchise legends, there is a Real One dual signature of Buster Posey and Juan Marichal. This is another really tough find on the secondary market.
5. 2010 Topps Buster Posey RC #2
Buster Posey's Topps rookie is a key option for those starting a collection. The 2010 Topps Buster Posey rookie has become one of the most iconic cards from a Topps flagship set during the 2010s. It is a must-own for many modern card collectors.
Similar to the Topps Heritage rookie, this card has grown in popularity and price over the years. This is not a card you will stumble upon in a dollar box at a card show and high-grade and raw mint copies can be expensive. 2010 Topps Baseball also has a strong allure for collectors due to the parallel cards. The most easily found parallels available are the Gold (#/2,010) and Red Bordered Factory Set (#/299). There are also Black (#/59) and Silk (#/50) versions with a much lower print run. In particular, the Silk parallels, which are no longer included in the flagship set, are very popular.
4. 2010 Topps Finest Buster Posey Autograph Patch RC #162 (284 copies per letter)
In 2006, Upper Deck created "By The Letter Autographs" for SP Authentic. The cards featured a manufactured letter from the player's name (or nickname) that was autographed, with each letter being a different card. Collectors who found all the versions could spell out the player's name. The SP Authentic letter autographs were wildly popular so Topps began a rival set of cards for Finest starting in 2009. Topps made the manufactured letter autographs stand apart from Upper Deck with a rookie-only checklist featuring last names. Although the insert set would only last two years, Topps has still dabbled with this concept in other products.
The 2010 Finest Buster Posey autograph was easily the best of the letter patch cards produced by Topps. Posey signed a healthy number of cards, so they appear for sale frequently. With a print run of 284 copies per letter, this is one of the larger print runs in the set. If you are looking for a certified autograph from Posey's official rookie card checklist, the 2010 Finest Autograph Rookie Letter Patch is the card to add to your collection. There are also Refractor (#/75), Blue Refractor (#/25), Gold Refractor (#/50), and Red Refractor (#/5) parallels. All of the parallel autographs are tough to find and have a steep price tag. The Blue edition is shown below.
3. 2010 Topps Chrome Wrapper Redemption Buster Posey RC #221
The hottest name in the baseball card world during the summer of 2010 was Steven Strasburg. The Nationals flame-throwing pitcher had been selected first overall in the 2009 MLB Draft. Collectors went crazy for his cards. Many in the hobby began pre-ordering products way ahead of time in anticipation of tracking down rookie and autograph cards of "Stras."
So what does Steven Strasburg have to do with the Topps Chrome Buster Posey rookie card? In late August of 2010, the Nationals placed Steven Strasburg on the disabled list with a torn elbow ligament. Many collectors were upset that they had pre-ordered late-calendar year releases such as Topps Chrome given that the star prospect's health and career were in doubt. Topps attempted to make amends with collectors by adding a wrapper redemption program to Topps Chrome. Mailing in 24 Topps Chrome wrappers—a whole Hobby box—earned collectors a bonus pack of three cards. This Buster Posey Chrome card was included in the bonus wrapper redemption packs. The exact production numbers are not known, but it is not a difficult card to find. All copies of the Posey Chrome card are Refractors. Topps only made one colored parallel for the Posey card, a Green Refractor with 599 copies.
Topps also inserted a rare autographed version of Posey's Topps Chrome card into the Wrapper Redemption packs. While Topps Chrome traditionally has on-card signatures, Posey's card features a sticker autograph. The print run totals just 100 cards (90 Refractors and 10 Green Refractors).
2. 2008 Bowman Sterling Buster Posey Autograph #BSPBP
Over the years, Bowman Sterling traditionally had a strong autograph checklist, offering collectors limited, high-end signatures of players such as Mike Trout and Clayton Kershaw. The 2008 Bowman Sterling Autograph of Buster Posey has quietly joined that pair of future Hall of Famers as one of the best pre-rookie signatures to appear in this product. If you are searching for an upmarket pre-rookie or rookie autograph of Buster Posey, this card is worth your time and money. Collectors may also want to check out the three serial numbered, colored parallel cards, which include a Refractor card (#/199), shown below, along with Gold Refractor (#/50) and Black Refractor (#/25) cards.
1. 2008 Bowman Chrome Autograph Buster Posey #BDPP128
You can never go wrong collecting Bowman Chrome autographs. The Bowman brand is responsible for some of the most important modern autographed rookie and pre-rookie cards. Buster Posey's first pre-rookie autograph appeared in 2008 Bowman Chrome Draft Picks & Prospects. This is the future Hall of Famer's most highly sought-after card. Each Buster Posey autograph in this Draft Picks & Prospects features an on-card signature. The three-time World Series Champion has long been popular in the collecting world and his on-field success throughout his career has only added to the demand and price for these cards.
Collectors looking for copies of this card should be willing to spend generously, especially if you are going to track down the parallels. There are five different colored parallel cards with a print run over 25, making them the most realistic to appear on the secondary market. Following the usual patterns, Refractors are numbered to 500, X-Fractors to 225, Blue Refractors to 150, Gold Refractors to 50, and Orange Refractors to 25 copies.