We have had some really great Topps baseball card releases this year, but welcome to the main event. Topps Chrome is here, being ripped, and contents making their way to eBay and other online card shops and platforms.
One of the best parts? For me, it’s this—taking a look at the best cards pulled so far, checking values, and seeing what surprises are in store for collectors both young and old.
Important note here is that especially on the heels of release day, prices can be a bit crazy. More often than not, a new product hits the shelves, people rush to buy the cards they absolutely must have, but then when the dust settles, prices for those same cards decrease drastically.
So, if you want to get your hands on one of these cards, by all means—I’m guilty of doing the same, especially for lower-numbered serial cards you think might not pop up again! But, just remember the likes of Wander and others upon release of Series 1; take a look at card values and try to understand trends a bit more.
For the sake of this list, I’m also not going to include superfractors, and other low-numbered cards. The goal for me here is to educate on what cards you might pull if buying a blaster of cards for yourself, etc. While supers and others are of course the best of the best, the odds of you pulling one is low, not to mention that if a super has already been pulled, your chances of pulling that same card reduce to zero.
It’s also a living list, and while I’m starting with 5 cool cards for now, I’ll certainly be adding more as things unfold. Especially given the fact I’m mainly looking at sold cards, and there are a ton of others that have yet to complete their auction run. Have fun!
2022 Topps Chrome Julio Rodriguez Rookie Auto
I guess it’s time for me to go back and make some updates to my Julio Rodriguez rookie cards post, because this thing is stunning! Yes, I understand it’s a horizontal card, which, whatever, but it’s a wide-open canva for this young star to show off a beautiful swing that is powering the Mariners to the playoffs (maybe) and himself to Rookie of the Year.
2022 Topps Chrome Ronald Acuna SP Gold Speckle Variation
Apparently there is a gold speckle parallel this year? News to me. So, let’s go to the source. Beckett has this to say:
“Image Variations return for select cards. This is one of the few places that Topps gives SPs parallels. Here, they come in the form of Green Speckle Refractors (/99), Gold Speckle Refractors (/50), Orange Speckle Refractors (/25), Red Speckle Refractors (/5) and Superfractors (1/1).”
2022 Topps Chrome Spencer Strider Rookie Auto
Yes, a pitcher! I mean, have you seen Spencer Strider pitch? What a treat. And it’s no wonder you’re already seeing his rookie autos fly off the shelf. I’m not a Braves fan, so as an outsider, it felt like Strider came out of nowhere, and I can’t imagine he has many autos out there? I mean, either way it doesn’t matter because he could have 100 autos, and none would be as coveted as a true chrome rookie auto.
(Quick tip: if you see the price crossed out like this on eBay, that means the card was sold via Best Offer. So, $349.99 is not the price this card sold for. To find that price, you can utilize the eBay price guide or outside tools like 130point.com—which says this specific card above sold for $200.
2022 Topps Chrome Oneil Cruz Rookie Parallels
I really like Oneil Cruz, and I also enjoy rookie chrome refractor parallels like Prisms (not to be confused with Panini’s Prizms) and Xfractors. Of course, there is something about the simplicity of a base refractor, and the great thing about Topps Chrome is that you’ll have options with different colors and then some. Take a look at other Oneil Cruz rookie cards.
A quick aside, as an A’s fan, I’m fortunate green is a color parallel (usually numbered to 99). I feel for collectors of teams who don’t have color match parallels. You can find something close in most cases, but there is no yellow, unfortunately (gold could work in a pinch!)
2022 Topps Chrome Wander Franco Rookie Parallels
Yes, even in the midst of a season filled with injury time, there have been more than enough flashes of Wander Franco’s baseball abilities; and they’re special. Especially if he can get healthy and have a regular playing time run as they Rays make their way to the playoffs, those talents will be on the big stage for many to feast their eyes upon.
And yes, we have a variation! True to Topps form, variations usually feature lighter photos, like players joking around, in the dugout, street, clothes, etc. This card is no different!