Vladimir Guerrero Jr. Rookie Cards Aren’t Here Yet, But Here’s What You Can Get

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With his MLB debut slated for April 26, the first Vladimir Guerrero Jr. Rookie Card will arrive soon. He entered 2019 as the consensus top prospect. This comes after 2018 where he was third on both Baseball America and MLB‘s list of the Top 100 Prospects behind only Ronald Acuna and Shohei Ohtani.

Vladimir Guerrero Jr. Rookie Card

A slugger who can hit for average and show patience, Vladimir Guerrero Jr. has the potential to be extremely dangerous at the plate. He’s shown this at every level he’s played at thus far and is one of the most heralded prospects baseball has seen in some time.

While the first Vladimir Guerrero Jr. Rookie Card won’t debut in a big league base set for a bit, collectors still have plenty of cards to chase. These are focused primarily in prospect sets from both Topps and Panini. Although they have been popular from the get-go, Vladimir Guerrero cards exploded in 2017 as his true potential became more clear.

While the key hitting factors have certainly helped on the speculation of his cards, it may be tough for some to maintain their growth. Often a top prospect’s values spike in anticipation of their MLB careers beginning only to fall back somewhat unless they get off to a torrid start. Another factor is the fact that Guerrero Jr. is going to play in Canada. Sure, they’re the most popular team in the country by far. It also means he’s going to get lots of attention on the other side of the border.

But there’s also the name recognition that comes with being the son of a recent MLB great who just so happens to be a Hall of Famer.

When Will the First Vladimir Guerrero Jr. Rookie Card Release?

Going by traditional definitions, RCs come in major league base sets. To get in a full MLB base set, one has to be an active member of the team’s roster. So the first Vladimir Guerrero Jr. Rookie Card, going by traditional approaches, likely won’t be for at least a couple of months. That said, with the advent of print-on-demand sets, there’s a strong chance that his first cards as a major leaguer will be made available within hours of his first game. And then the floodgates will open.

That said Guerrero does have lots of prospect and minor league releases already. Curious about what Vladimir Guerrero Jr. cards are out there? Here’s a breakdown of several key cards of not that are out already, which date back to 2015.

Guide to Key Vladimir Guerrero Jr. Pre-Rookie Cards and Prospect Cards

The following is not an exhaustive list of Vladimir Guerrero cards. Rather, it highlights many of his top early issues from before his MLB debut. Here’s a full Vladimir Guerrero Jr. card checklist.


2015 Elite Extra Edition Prospect Autographs Vladimir Guerrero Jr. #169

Vladimir Guerrero has a base card in 2015 Elite Extra Edition, but it’s the autograph that gets the attention.

Not serial-numbered, collectors should be aware that the base cards are popular with in-person and through-the-mail autograph collectors. Certified autographs are done using stickers. So if the signature is on-card, it’s not from a pack. On the back of certified versions, the bottom of the card also mentions Panini’s autograph guarantee.

Parallels: Aspirations Die-Cut (/100), Status Purple Die-Cut (/75), Status Blue Die-Cut (/50), Red Ink (/25), Status Emerald Die-Cut (/25), Green Ink (/10), Status Orange Die-Cut (/10), Status Gold Die-Cut (/5), Printing Plates Black (1/1), Printing Plates Cyan (1/1), Printing Plates Magenta (1/1), Printing Plates Yellow (1/1), Status Black Die-Cut (1/1)

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2015 Elite Extra Edition Vladimir Guerrero Jr. Autograph




2015 Elite Extra Edition Passing the Torch Signatures Vladimir Guerrero Jr./Vladimir Guerrero #7 /10

2015 Elite Extra Edition has another early Vladimir Guerrero Jr. autograph. But this one is a little more sentimental as it also features his father. Including parallels, there are only 16 total copies of the card so it’s scarcity is a consideration.

Parallels: Gold (/5), Black (1/1)

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2015 Elite Extra Edition Passing the Torch Autographs Vladimir Guerrero Jr.




2015 Panini Contenders International Ticket Autographs Vladimir Guerrero Jr. #12

Releasing before Elite Extra Edition, 2015 Panini Contenders Baseball has the distinction of being the first set with a Vladimir Guerrero Jr. autograph. The card is a short print confirmed by Panini. That means the base version has 200 total copies or less.

Parallels: Blue Foil, Red Foil, Cracked Ice (/23), Playoff Ticket (/15), Championship Ticket (1/1), Printing Plates Black (1/1), Printing Plates Cyan (1/1), Printing Plates Magenta (1/1), Printing Plates Yellow (1/1)

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2015 Panini Contenders Vladimir Guerrero Autograph




2016 Bowman Chrome Prospect Autographs Vladimir Guerrero Jr. #CPA-VG

The 2016 Bowman Chrome Vladimir Guerrero autograph is his benchmark card against which all others are measured. Some might carry more value, but as far as relatively readily available cards go, this is the most important. It’s the outfielder’s first autograph in a MLB uniform. More importantly, it’s Bowman Chrome, the most popular brand in the hobby when it comes to prospecting.

By traditional definitions, this is an insert, not a Vladimir Guerrero Jr. Rookie Card. However, lots of collectors treat it like one.

The card started out strong and soared in price in 2017.

The 2016 Bowman Chrome Vladimir Guerrero Jr. autograph is found in 2016 Bowman Chrome Baseball packs.

Parallels: Refractors (/499), Purple Refractors (/250), Blue Refractors (/150), Green Refractors (/99), Gold Refractors (/50), Orange Refractors (/25), Orange Shimmer Refractors (/10), Red Shimmer Refractors (/10), Red Refractors (/5), Blue Twitter Refractors (/3), Printing Plates Black (1/1), Printing Plates Cyan (1/1), Printing Plates Magenta (1/1), Printing Plates Yellow (1/1), Superfractors (1/1)

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2016 Bowman Chrome Vladimir Guerrero Jr. Autograph




2016 Bowman Chrome Prospects Vladimir Guerrero Jr. #BCP55

Let’s be frank. The 2016 Bowman Chrome Vladimir Guerrero Jr. autograph is expensive. Probably too expensive for a lot of collectors. The unsigned version of the card is, understandably, much more affordable. It carries much of the same significance, though as being among Guerrero’s first cards as a member of the Blue Jays.

Like the signed version, there are lots of different Refractors to add a chase element.

Parallels: Refractors (/499), Purple Refractors (/250), Blue Refractors (/150), Green Refractors (/99), Green Shimmer Refractors (/99), Gold Refractors (/50), Orange Refractors (/25), Orange Shimmer Refractors (/25), Blue Twitter Refractors (/15), Red Refractors (/5), Printing Plates Black (1/1), Printing Plates Cyan (1/1), Printing Plates Magenta (1/1), Printing Plates Yellow (1/1), Superfractors (1/1)

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2016 Bowman Chrome Vladimir Guerrero Jr.




2016 Bowman Family Tree Vladimir Guerrero Jr./Vladimir Guerrero #FT-GU

2015 Elite Extra Edition may have been the first set to include the father-son combo, but the Passing the Torch dual autograph is tough. The 2016 Bowman Family Tree insert is a lot easier to find. And for some collectors, the pairing of both Canadian MLB teams is a nice nod as well. The card comes in 2016 Bowman Baseball.

Parallels: Blue (/150), Green (/99), Orange (/25), Red (/5), Metallic (1/1)

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2016 Bowman Family Tree Vladimir Guerrero Jr.




2016 Bowman Platinum Top Prospects Autographs Vladimir Guerrero Jr. #TPA-VGJ

After taking a break in 2015, Bowman Platinum returned the following year, this time as a Walmart exclusive. Like all Bowman brands, signatures from prospects were a major selling point. Guerrero’s Tops Prospects Autograph isn’t on-card like Bowman Chrome. It also doesn’t have the brand recognition so it’s more affordable.

It is worth noting that Guerrero may not have a base version of his autograph, just parallels starting with Purple, which is numbered to 150.

Parallels: Purple (/150), Green (/75), Orange (/25), Black (1/1)

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2016 Bowman Platinum Vladimir Guerrero Jr. Autograph




2016 Bowman’s Best Best of 2016 Autographs Vladimir Guerrero Jr. #B16-VG

If the 2016 Bowman Chrome Vladimir Guerrero autograph is too much, you might want to look to Bowman’s Best. It’s around half the price (sometimes even lower) and still comes hard-signed and with full MLB marks. The design also has a bit more pizzazz, which may appeal to some. While it might not seem logical to some that it’s so much cheaper, it’s an example of how a brand can influence a card’s popularity.

Parallels: Refractors, Green Refractors (/99), Orange Refractors (/50), Atomic Refractors (/25), Red Refractors (/5), Printing Plates Black (1/1), Printing Plates Cyan (1/1), Printing Plates Magenta (1/1), Printing Plates Yellow (1/1), Superfractors (1/1)

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2016 Bowman's Best Best of 2016 Autographs Vladimir Guerrero Jr.



 

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Ryan Cracknell

A collector for much of his life, Ryan focuses primarily on building sets, Montreal Expos and interesting cards. He's also got one of the most comprehensive collections of John Jaha cards in existence (not that there are a lot of them). Got a question, story idea or want to get in touch? You can reach him by email and through Twitter @tradercracks.

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2 comments

  1. Randy J. 26 March, 2018 at 17:05

    I pulled a bunch of Vlad Guerrero Jr. rookie cards, right out of the pack, last year!

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