12 Most Valuable Shohei Ohtani Rookie Cards

Shohei Ohtani
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Depending on a wide range of variables, including the player, card’s condition, and history, baseball cards can be incredibly valuable collectibles. If you have it all, the cost of a single card can be extremely high. “Rookie cards” are baseball cards that depict a player during their first season, and they are frequently the most expensive sort available.

A designated hitter, pitcher, and outfielder with the Los Angeles Angels of Major League Baseball, Shohei Ohtani is a professional baseball player from Japan. He had previously played for the Hokkaido Nippon-Ham Fighters of the Pacific League of Nippon Professional Baseball (NPB). Shohei, who goes by the moniker “Shotime,” is so devoted to baseball that in his native Japan, people refer to him as “yaky shnen”—a youngster who lives and breathes the game. These are 12 of the most valuable Shohei Ohtani rookie cards on the market now, accordingly to eBay.

12. Shohei Ohtani 2017 Bowman Chrome Mega Box Card, $25,000

On the card front of this basically unimprovable Bowman Chrome Mega Box Prospects Refractor debut collectible, Shohei Ohtani may be seen wearing the Team Japan outfit. The Los Angeles star’s reputation has reached previously unheard-of heights because of Ohtani’s mastery of the game, which helped him win the MVP award in 2021 and come second in the voting for the award in 2022. This chrome card is one of the most valuable Shohei Ohtani rookie cards ever.

The Japanese sensation pitched a 1.86 ERA and won the Most Valuable Player Award at the World Baseball Classic in March 2023, leading his country to victory. One of the most meaningful events in the Classic’s history occurred when Ohtani ended Team Japan’s chances of winning by striking out Angels teammate Mike Trout in the final at-bat. 

11. Complete Set Of Topps Chrome Black Orange Autos, $29,000

This unbelievably valuable collectible includes112 2022 Topps Chrome Black Orange Auto Parallels, individually selected. Although only one was graded, all were in excellent condition, with the exception of two being in their original encasing and most likely being 9s and 10s. These authenticated cards are some of the most valuable Shohei Ohtani rookie cards available now.

Short Printed Autographs from 30 current Hall of Famers are included in this set (Bagwell, Bench, Carew, Fingers, Hoffman, Jeter, Johnson, Jones, Larkin, Maddux, Martinez, Mazeroski, Molitor, Murray, Ortiz, Piazza, Rice, Rivera, Rodriguez, Rolen, Ryan, Sandberg, Schmidt, Simmons, Smith, Thomas, Trammell, Walker, Winfield, and Yount), along with 3 soon-to-be Hall of Famers along with notable rookies, confirming that this set contains some of the most valuable Shohei Ohtani rookie cards.

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10. Set of Four Shohei Ohtani Rookie Cards – 10 Graded, $29,000

Ohtani, who was regarded early on as a premier two-way player, was selected first overall by the Fighters in the 2012 draft. He was an outfielder and pitcher with the Fighters in the NPB from 2013 to 2017, where he helped them win the 2016 Japan Series. After the 2017 campaign, the Fighters released Ohtani to MLB, where he signed with the Angels and shortly thereafter won the 2018 American League Rookie of the Year Award, making these some of the most valuable Shohei Ohtani rookie cards.

Internationally, Ohtani played for Japan in the 2023 World Baseball Classic. After Team Japan beat Team USA, he was named the tournament’s MVP. Ohtani’s full-count strikeout of Team USA captain Mike Trout in the decisive game made it one of the most-watched baseball games in history.

9. Shohei Ohtani 2018 Triple Threads Rookie Card, $30,000

The Shohei Ohtani standard rookie card in 2018 Bowman Baseball features a simple design. It is straightforward, unobtrusive, and easily accessible. In the long run, it will be one of the most cheap options available for the most valuable Shohei Ohtani rookie cards.

The similarities add some color and more rarity. However, the Bowman Chrome Shohei Ohtani autograph that can be found in packs is what really draws attention to the set. Even though it’s an insert and not a typical RC, some of the rarest refractor specimens have sold for tens of thousands of dollars. The unique Superfractor Autograph generated a lot of buzz inside the hobby and beyond of it. A Californian collector found it in June as one of the most valuable Shohei Ohtani rookie cards around.

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8. 2018 Bowman High Tek Shohei Ohtani Auto Rookie Card, $33,000

Ohtani finished with a batting average of.285, a.361 on-base percentage, 22 home runs, 61 RBIs, and 10 stolen bases in his debut season in the major leagues. He had a 4-2 record, a 3.31 ERA, 1.16 walks plus hits per inning pitched, and 63 strikeouts in 10 starts. His .564 slugging percentage for the MLB season was seventh-best among players with at least 350 plate appearances.

He joined Babe Ruth as the only MLB player with 10 pitching appearances and 20 home runs in a season, making this one of the most valuable Shohei Ohtani rookie cards. He also became the second-fastest Angels rookie to reach that milestone. In April and September, he also took home two American League Rookie of the Month awards.

On September 3, 2018, ESPN reported that an MRI revealed fresh damage to Ohtani’s UCL, and that physicians had advised him to have Tommy John surgery. Ohtani agreed to the operation, which would keep him off the mound until 2020, the Angels revealed on September 25. Billy Eppler, the general manager of the Angels, reported on October 1 that Ohtani had successfully undergone Tommy John surgery. He received the American League Rookie of the Year award on November 12, constituting one of the most valuable Shohei Ohtani rookie cards ever.

7. 2013 Konami #Sr7 Bgs Gem Mint 9.5 Shohei Ohtani Japanese Rookie Card, $45,000

The magnificent 2013 BBM Hokkaido serves as Shohei’s official rookie vehicle from his first year in Japan. Due to the fact that it was only made available in Japan, this card is quite uncommon in the United States. It features an on-card auto and shows the hard-throwing kid breaking his windup to unleash another of his world-beating fastballs during an NPB match.

But rather than the card’s appearance, the card’s backstory and Ohtani’s debut as a professional baseball player might have been the driving force for buying this card as it is one of the most valuable Shohei Ohtani rookie cards. 

Shohei Ohtani made national (and international) news in 2012 while playing high school baseball for Hanamaki Higashi High after throwing a scorching 99.4 mph (160 km/h) fastball at the age of 18. 

At the time, Ohtani was largely seen as a pitcher by scouts, and many observers thought his performance on the mound would set him up for future success. Several scouts from the NPB and MLB were interested after seeing the widely shared video of his record-breaking pitch. In 2012, two months after pitching for Japan in the U-18 World Championships, he decided to look into professional opportunities in America. 

He was given up on by every Japanese team. Every team, with the exception of the Hokkaido Nippon-Ham Fighters, is a “second-tier” team that placed more emphasis on the front-office analytics trend popular in the West. Shohei consistently expressed a desire to play in America, but the Fighters persisted and ended up being the only team to select him in the NPB Amateur Draft, making this one of the most valuable Shohei Ohtani rookie cards. 

6. 2018 Topps High Tek Shohei Ohtani RC Auto Red Rookie Card, $50,000

Topps made the decision in 2018 to revamp their classic “Transcendent” edition by including a second set built just for the Asian market. Just two players, Ohtani and Ichiro, are represented in the 50-card base set and 12 on-card autos, with Ohtani appearing on 30 of the first 50 cards. These cards are incredibly rare on the American market because each base card is /50 and each autograph is /5, making these some of the most valuable Shohei Ohtani rookie cards.

There is an alternate edition of “Ohtani Through the Years” that contains 50 cards that represent the years 1952 through 2018. The collection is similar to the yearly Topps Heritage release. As ShoTime continues to wow fans every day, his legend is growing and these cards are proven to be market movers. 

Ohtani has continued to disprove his detractors since winning Rookie of the Year honors in 2018 and has developed into one of baseball’s top talents. Ohtani recovered from an injury that took him off the field for the entirety of 2019 and a cut-short 2020 season to have an incredible 2021 that earned him the prestigious American League MVP title and launched these into the stratosphere as some of the most valuable Shohei Ohtani rookie cards. 

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5. 2013 BBM Rookie Memorabilia Patch Card Shohei Ohtani, $50,000 

The three magic words for buying sports cards are “GOAT, Rookie, and Limited.” It doesn’t get much better than this, though: Patch #M7 for the 2013 BBM 2nd Version Rookie Memorabilia Ahtani Shohei. This is the greatest rookie card ever made of the greatest baseball player in history and one of the most valuable Shohei Ohtani rookie cards.

There were only 20 patch cards produced! The #04/20, NM-MT PSA 8, and superb 2013 Ohtani Rookie Memorabilia Patch card are from the set. The magic word “Rookie” is printed on the front, back, and PSA label of the garment. a term with significant significance given that this is Ohtani’s True Rookie card. With all due respect to the 2018 Ohtani American “Rookies,” his Japanese Rookies from 2013 are 5 full years older!

When he was 18 years old and had just joined the Hokkaido Nippon-Ham Fighters as a youthful Rookie phenom—soon to become a legend in Japan and the U.S.—the 2-way great is depicted on this 2013 Rookie patch card.

The first outstanding dual player since Babe Ruth more than a century ago, Ohtani is seen stretched across the card’s front in a powerful pitching posture. The eye-catching, four-color, huge jersey patch has a diameter of more than an inch. Additionally, it features two different materials and the initials “FI” from his Rookie Fighters jersey in gold, blue, black, and white. Eye appeal is unparalleled. You have a unique chance to expand your collection with a limited-edition 2013 Ohtani True Rookie, one of the most valuable Shohei Ohtani rookie cards. 

4. 2018 Topps National Baseball Card Day Shohei Ohtani Rookie Card, $52,000

The 2018 Topps National Baseball Card Day collection features more than just packs; an in-stadium component was confirmed at the Topps Industry Conference. This entails giveaways at the ballparks, similar to the 2017 set. One million packets will reportedly be distributed by Topps at stadiums alone. There will be a lot of publicity for NBCD, which can raise interest and attendance and make these some of the most valuable Shohei Ohtani rookie cards.

A new alternative for 2018 Topps National Baseball Card Day is a second exclusive card that is offered two weeks later on August 25. While collectors may still rely on an exclusive Aaron Judge card released by Hobby shops that aren’t featured in packs, this is a new option. Rhys Hoskins, a rookie standout, is featured on this second card. To get each incentive chase card, collectors must spend $10 or more on Topps products, making their money back if they pull this card, one of the most valuable Shohei Ohtani rookie cards.

3. Shohei Ohtani 2018 Panini Rookie Card 1/1, $75,000

For any baseball or Ohtani lover, this 2018 Panini The National VIP Shohei Ohtani Rookie One of One trading card is a must-have. Shohei Ohtani personally autographed this card, which also has a special black prism parallel/variety, making this one of the most valuable Shohei Ohtani rookie cards. Panini Authentic supplied the signature authentication. The card has a near mint or excellent condition and is rated 9.5 by Beckett Grading Services (BGS).

The card is a limited edition collector’s item made of premium card paper and has unique elements such as a hologram, serial numbering, and a one-of-one chase insert. The card is not a legitimate reprint and is in its original form. Any collector would do well to invest in this trading card as it is the ideal addition to any collection and one of the most valuable Shohei Ohtani rookie cards.

2. Shohei Ohtani 2018 Nat’l. Treasures Rookie Card, $125,000

2018 Panini National Treasures Baseball is still a popular option with affluent collectors despite being simply one option among many high-end offerings. Eight signatures or memorabilia are included in the all-hit boxes, with at least one booklet among them, making for one of the most valuable Shohei Ohtani rookie cards.

Similar to how Aaron Judge boosted the 2017 product, the 2018 product is bolstered by significant rookie talent, including hard-signed (and live) Shohei Ohtani autographs in several sets.

MLB Autographs from the 2018 Panini National Treasures set and the Rookie Material Signatures are the primary rookie offerings in the 2018 Panini National Treasures Baseball checklist. The roster includes well-known players like Acuna, Albies, Hoskins, Ohtani, Soto, and Torres, as well as an on-card autograph and swatch piece as one of the most valuable Shohei Ohtani rookie cards.

1. Shohei Ohtani Rookie Baseball Card Leaf 1 Of 1: Most Valuable Shohei Ohtani Rookie Cards, $150,000

Ohtani destroyed opposing pitchers at the plate, slashing .257/.372/.592 with a staggering 46 home runs, 100 RBIs, 26 stolen bases, and eight triples, which topped all players in the major leagues. In addition to earning him a spot in the Home Run Derby, his performance earned him a starting position on the AL All-Star team. Not bad for a pitcher’s debut, making for some of the most valuable Shohei Ohtani rookie cards.

How did he do when pitching? Following two unsuccessful seasons on the mound, many observers wondered about how the Angels may use him as a pitcher going into the 2021 season. Many believed he would start as the opener or serve as the main closer. But manager Joe Maddon took a chance on the rising sensation and kept starting him. 

Shohei had a record of 9-2 in 23 starts, a 3.18 ERA, and 156 strikeouts for a 10.8 K/9 ratio. Ohtani became the first player in history to start the All-Star Game on the mound and hit leadoff after Maddon and the Halos’ risk paid off when he was chosen by his fellow players to be the game’s starting pitcher. His success continued into 2022 when he hit a grand slam in a victory for LA over the Tampa Bay Rays 11-3.

Ohtani keeps demonstrating why he is one of the safest modern options to collect due to his ongoing development and some of the most valuable Shohei Ohtani rookie cards. One of these uncommon Topps Transcendent cards, as well as many other Ohtani cards, may be worth the hunt for collectors. 

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