The best and most valuable Barry Bonds rookie card is the 1987 O-Pee-Chee Card (#320), but there are numerous good alternatives; I’ve covered them all below.
The 7-time NL MVP is MLB’s leading all-time home run hitter, and he hit 30 or more home runs in 13 consecutive seasons, between 1992 and 2004.
Bonds’ first baseball cards came in late 1986 baseball card products, but aren’t considered rookie cards, by traditional definition, because of their distribution – Those cards are considered XRCs, but some are among his most significant and valuable early cards.
His rookie cards appeared in mainstream 1987 baseball card sets, from Topps, Donruss and Fleer, as well as Canadian counterparts O-Pee-Chee and Leaf – There were also more miscellaneous and premium box set releases from that year.
His early cards might not be the most valuable baseball cards, and definitely not the rarest, but he does have some key cards that do hold good value considering the era they are from, right around the start of the Junk Wax Era.
Here’s a breakdown of the Barry Bonds rookie cards, from 1987, and some of his other most popular and expensive early cards, from 1986 and 1987.
Table of Contents
Barry Bonds Rookie Cards
1987 Topps Barry Bonds Rookie Card #320
The 1987 Topps Barry Bonds card is the most iconic and well-known rookie card of his, coming from one of baseball card’s cornerstone products.
The popular 1987 Topps set helps the card’s popularity, and it’s easy to get hold of because of high production numbers.
Average price of a PSA 10: $240-$260
1987 O-Pee-Chee Barry Bonds Rookie Card #320
There’s not a lot of difference between this 1987 O-Pee-Chee Barry Bonds rookie card compared to the Topps one above, and that’s because it’s the Canadian counterpart.
It features the same design on the front, apart from the brand logo on the bottom-left of the card, but has a much lower print run, which is a big reason why it’s Bonds’ most valuable rookie card.
It’s not easy to find this one in a top grade, so you can expect to pay a premium for those – It makes this one easily Barry Bonds’ most valuable rookie.
Average price of a PSA 10: $10k-$10.5K
1987 Donruss Barry Bonds Rookie Card #361
This 1987 Donruss Barry Bonds rookie card features a Pittsburgh Pirates colored design, with the black and yellow striped border.
While the card design fits well with the image of Bonds, the black border makes it prone to damage, so finding it in top condition or grade is a bit tougher.
There was a high production of this Bonds rookie, so it’s not too hard to find, and very much affordable for most collectors; In fact, it’s the cheapest Barry Bonds rookie card to buy.
Average price of a PSA 10: $120-$140
1987 Leaf Barry Bonds Rookie Card #219
The 1987 Leaf Barry Bonds rookie card is to the Donruss card as the O-Pee-Chee card is to Topps – It’s the same design, but it’s the Canadian counterpart, with the only difference on the front being the brand logo, it also has a different card number in the set.
Although it doesn’t quite see the same increase in value as the O-Pee-Chee card does, it does also have a lower print run compared to the almost identical Donruss rookie.
Average price of a PSA 10: $2.5k-$3k
1987 Fleer Barry Bonds Rookie Card #604
The 1987 Fleer Barry Bonds card features a card design that matches the era it’s from, but its simplicity has an appeal to it.
It’s not hard to find this one, and it holds similar value to the Donruss and Topps Barry Bonds rookie cards.
Average price of a PSA 10: $190-$210
Other Key Early Barry Bonds Cards
Barry Bonds’ official rookie cards, which come from mainstream 1987 baseball card products, aren’t his first released cards. He had multiple cards released in late 1986 box sets, while also having a handful of cards from 1987 special edition sets. These cards do not fit the traditional definition of a rookie card, but are still desirable early cards of his, which are highly sought-after by collectors.
1986 Topps Traded Tiffany Barry Bonds #11T
One of the most sought-after early Barry Bonds cards, the 1986 Topps Traded Tiffany card.
Although by today’s standards it can’t be considered scarce, the print run of 5,000 copies made it a very limited production for the year it was released, which was right around the beginning of the Junk Wax Era.
The Tiffany version adds a glossy finish to Bonds’ regular base Topps Traded card, which has an identical design, but much higher print-run – This Tiffany version is one of Bonds’ most valuable early cards.
Average price of a PSA 10: $290-$310
1986 Fleer Update Barry Bonds #U14
This 1986 Fleer Update Barry Bonds XRC features an image of him in action with the bat, and has a simple design, with the yellow colors of the Pirates jersey and the blue border.
I personally think this one is a nicer card than his 1987 Fleer rookie card, but it does cost more to buy.
Average price of a PSA 10: $330-$350
1986 Donruss Rookies Barry Bonds #11
The 1986 Donruss Barry Bonds card was part of the extended Rookies box set, and features a questionable design, with the green striped border.
Although the look of the card leaves a bit to be desired, some value can be found in the top graded versions of this one.
Average price of a PSA 10: $140-$160
1987 Topps Tiffany Barry Bonds #320
This 1987 Topps Tiffany Barry Bonds card is one of his most sought-after early cards, and one of the most valuable as well.
Adding a glossy stock, for a premium upgrade to his Topps rookie card, this Tiffany version had a production run of 30,000 copies.
It’s by no means scarce, but much more limited than the regular base Topps card, and the added glossy stock contributes to its much higher value.
The card also features a nice design – In top grade, it sells for a bit of a premium.
Average price of a PSA 10: $950-$1.1k
1987 Donruss Opening Day Barry Bonds #163
Every player that featured on their team’s opening day roster at the start of the season had a card in the 1987 Donruss Opening Day box set, as the name suggests.
The design is virtually the same as the main Donruss baseball cards from that year, but with maroon colored borders.
Barry Bonds is more significant in the Opening Day set because he has an error card, which features an image of Johnny Ray, with Bonds’ name below – It was a mistake which was quickly rectified, and an image of Bonds smiling replaced it.
However, copies of that error card are out there, and it’s become one of the most sought-after and valuable Barry Bonds cards of all-time, despite it not actually featuring an image of him.
Although the exact amount of the error card is unknown, it’s believed to be very limited, which makes it hard to find.
Average price of a PSA 10: $3.5k-$4k
1987 Fleer Glossy Barry Bonds #604
Fleer had its Glossy 1987 set, which adds a glossy stock to the regular Fleer base card, the same way Topps did with Tiffany.
It is believed that no more than 100,000 of these Barry Bonds cards were produced, which came exclusively in a factory set, so they’re more limited and desirable than the base Fleer card, which features the same design.
Average price of a PSA 10: $350-$370
1987 Fleer Hottest Stars Barry Bonds #5
The 1987 Fleer Hottest Stars Barry Bonds card was only available from a box set, which was sold at Revco stores, so it offers collectors something a bit different.
While it isn’t considered rare, it’s less common than many of the Bonds cards on this list. It isn’t entry-level value, but it’s not hugely expensive for a Bonds card, despite the lower production.
Average price of a PSA 10: $330-$350
When Was Barry Bonds’ Rookie Season?
Barry Bonds’ rookie season was the 1986 MLB season – He was selected as the 6th overall pick by the Pittsburgh Pirates in the 1985 MLB Draft.
What Is The Most Valuable Barry Bonds Rookie Card?
The most valuable Barry Bonds official rookie card is the 1987 O-Pee-Chee Card (#320), which is the Canadian counterpart to the Topps rookie card, with the same design (apart from the brand logo). A PSA 10 copy of the card is worth on average around $10,000.
It had a much lower print run than the Topps version, which is a big reason for it being worth more.