15 Most Valuable 2000 Topps Baseball Cards

Most Valuable 2000 Topps Baseball Cards


With so much hysteria and uncertainty heading into the turn of the millennium, the 2000 Topps baseball card set offered a bit of calm when Series One his store shelves in December 1999.

Even the 2000 Topps design seemed relaxed...

Though they ditched the gold borders from their 1998 and 1999 sets, they continued the theme of having non-white borders by using silver instead.

In a way, they bring back memories of the dull grey borders of the 1970 Topps set design from thirty years prior.

At 478 cards total, the checklist isn't daunting but it packs plenty of great cards for collectors to chase.

And in this guide, we'll take a look at the 15 most valuable.

Let's jump right in!

Ross Uitts

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Let's be clear: most of the cards from this set do not have any value these days.

Like the 2000 Bowman, Finest, Stadium Club and Upper Deck sets, large print runs saturated the market with these cards, driving down their values.

So, for the cards on this list to be worth much, they'll have to be graded by PSA to be in perfect, gem mint condition.

That means the card needs to be flawless.

Now that we got that out of the way, let's take a look at the list:

2000 Topps Traded #T40 Miguel Cabrera Rookie Card

Estimated PSA 10 Gem Mint Value: $650

Estimated Autograph PSA 10 Gem Mint Value: $15,000

Signed by the Florida Marlins in 1999 as an amateur free agent, Miguel Cabrera's 2000 season was about setting building blocks for a Hall-of-Fame career ahead.

At just 17 years old, Cabrera was a raw talent worth noticing.

The Venezuelan-born slugger was a natural-born hitter with batters box instincts beyond his years.

Yes, Cabrera's numbers to open his American pro career didn't exactly jump off the page.

He hit just .259 with a .685 OPS in 65 games between Florida's rookie-ball and low-A squads, adding 12 doubles, two home runs, two triples, and 28 RBIs in 284 plate appearances.

However, it was impossible to measure Cabrera's growth in raw stats.

He had "it."

Given time and reps, he was ticketed to become something special, even extraordinary.

The most important development for Cabrera in 2000 came about in the Venezuelan Winter League.

Cabrera was moved to third base from shortstop by manager Bill Plummer, his primary position during his back-to-back MVP seasons with the Detroit Tigers in 2012 and 2013.

Topps produced a base and autograph rookie card for Cabrera in their 2000 Topps Update set.

Technically, they aren't part of the 2000 Topps flagship set, but given how unique Cabrera's career has been, I wanted to include it on this list.

2000 Topps Traded #T40 Miguel Cabrera Rookie Card
2000 Topps Traded #TTA40 Autographed Miguel Cabrera Rookie Card

2000 Topps #400 Ken Griffey Jr.

Estimated PSA 10 Gem Mint Value: $75

In November of 1999, the Seattle Mariners announced that negotiations with the face of their franchise were at an impasse.

After rejecting an eight-year deal for $135 million (and seeing that info go public), all-universe center fielder Ken Griffey Jr. readied to move on.

Following in his father's footsteps, The Kid signed off on a five-player deal on February 10th, 2000, that sent him to Cincinnati for outfielder Mike Cameron, infielder Antonio Perez, pitcher Brett Tomko, and pitcher Jake Mayer.

Ken Griffey Sr. spent parts of twelve MLB seasons with the Reds, earning three All-Star nods and two World Series rings.

Now, it was Junior's turn.

Inked to a brand-new nine-year, $112.5 million pact, Junior set out to lift the Reds back into contention.

Cincinnati had made just one playoff appearance since their 1990 World Series win, and the fan base was desperate for a winner.

Junior did what he could in 2000 to oblige, hitting .271 with a .942 OPS, 40 home runs, 118 RBIs, and 100 runs scored, giving him five straight 40/100/100 seasons.

However, the eleven-time All-Star couldn't do it all by himself.

The Reds scuffled early, riding a late hot streak to an 85-77 record, missing the playoffs by a wide margin, a full nine games out of a Wild Card spot.

2000 Topps #400 Ken Griffey Jr. Baseball Card

2000 Topps #1 Mark McGwire

Estimated PSA 10 Gem Mint Value: $65

As the steroid era kicked into its Barry Bonds movement in the early 2000s, Mark McGwire saw his moment in the sun cut short.

From 1998 to early July of 2000, McGwire was on a power surge unlike anything seen before.

Including his then single-season record of 70 home runs in 1998, McGwire totaled 165 dingers in just a shade over 360 games.

And then, the injury bug bit the 36-year-old star and bit him hard.

McGwire went down with a severe knee injury two months into the 2000 season, hastening the end of one of the most controversial and brilliant careers in MLB history.

At the time of his injury, McGwire once again led baseball in home runs (30).

When he returned on September 8th, though, Big Mac was limited to pinch-hitting duty.

The 12-time All-Star went 5-for-15 in his return in limited at-bats, hitting two bombs to finish the regular season with 32.

The Cards continued to exercise caution in the playoffs as McGwire made six plate appearances in two postseason rounds, tallying just one hit (a homer, mind you) and two walks.

McGwire underwent surgery in the offseason in hopes of returning to his previous form.

Instead, he'd call it quits after an alarmingly rough, injury-riddled 2001 campaign.

2000 Topps #1 Mark McGwire Baseball Card

2000 Topps #2 Tony Gwynn

Estimated PSA 10 Gem Mint Value: $65

A year after notching his 3,000th hit in just his 2,440th game, things changed for beloved San Diego Padres outfielder Tony Gwynn.

Because of a laundry list of health issues and injuries, Gwynn appeared in just 111 games in 1999.

Now 40 years of age and two decades into his professional baseball journey, it didn't get any better for San Diego's hit king in 2000.

In fact, it got worse.

Gwynn was hurt for the majority of the 2000 campaign.

He played just 36 games for the Friars, by far the lowest total of his Hall of Fame career.

When one injury healed, another health issue cropped up.

The Los Angeles native's body wasn't up to the six-month grind anymore.

When he could get on the field, though, he was still Tony Gwynn.

In 140 plate appearances, the eight-time batting champ hit .323 with a more-than-respectable .805 OPS.

Retirement loomed in the not-so-distant future, but the 15-time All-Star would go out the same way he played, swinging and making contact more often than not.

2000 Topps #2 Tony Gwynn Baseball Card

2000 Topps #4 Cal Ripken Jr.

Estimated PSA 10 Gem Mint Value: $65

Legendary Baltimore Orioles third baseman Cal Ripken Jr.'s 1999 season ended prematurely due to injury and left him nine knocks short of joining the 3000-hit club.

On April 15th, 2000, Ripken ended the months-long wait with a three-hit day at Minnesota.

His 3,000th was his final hit of the day, a trademark blistering single off of reliever Hector Carrasco.

While the 2000 O's meandered their way to a 74-88 record, Cal battled through constant pain.

Now 39 years old and twenty years into his MLB career, the body of baseball's Ironman was starting to give out as he missed nearly half the season with a back injury, including all of July and August.

Ripken played in only 83 games in 2000, posting his worst batting average since 1992 (.256), 15 home runs, 16 doubles, and 56 RBIs in 339 plate appearances.

To put this into perspective, Ripken had nearly 150 more plate appearances in the strike-shortened '94 season.

And his combined 713 plate appearances in '99 and '00 fall short of his single-season totals for seven different campaigns.

Just over a year later, Ripken would hang them up and end one of the most remarkable careers in the annals of Major League Baseball.

2000 Topps #4 Cal Ripken Jr. Baseball Card

2000 Topps #250 Barry Bonds

Estimated PSA 10 Gem Mint Value: $65

At the turn of the millennium, things changed for Barry Bonds.

The San Francisco Giants superstar, now synonymous with the steroid era, was about to put together the most bonkers late-career boom in baseball history.

Regardless of what one might think of how he got there (and the body changes that came along with it), Bonds' 2000-04 run has no parallels in MLB lore.

And while most baseball historians focus on his four straight MVPs from 2001-04, his 2000 season deserves a closer look.

In 607 plate appearances for the 97-win NL West champs, Bonds slashed .306/.440/.688 with 49 home runs, 28 doubles, 129 runs scored, 11 stolen bases, and 106 RBIs.

He also led the Majors in OPS+ (188) and paced the National League in walks (117).

Somehow, this wasn't enough to net Bonds his fourth career MVP as he lost it to his teammate, second baseman Jeff Kent.

Now a nine-time All-Star and eight-time Silver Slugger, the NL's MVP runner-up had to put the disappointment aside and set his sights on rewriting his sketchy playoff narrative.

However, Bonds was vexed by the eventual NL champion New York Mets in the NLDS, hitting just .176 with a pedestrian .653 OPS in a four-game series loss.

2000 Topps #250 Barry Bonds Baseball Card

2000 Topps #60 Pedro Martinez

Estimated PSA 10 Gem Mint Value: $60

After becoming the third pitcher in MLB history to win an AL Cy Young (1999) and an NL Cy Young Award (1997), Boston Red Sox ace Pedro Martinez entered the 2000 campaign as baseball's most feared hurler.

And in 2000, he added to said reputation with one of the modern era's most incredible single-season pitching performances.

That season, American League pitchers posted a cumulative 4.91 ERA.

It was the height of baseball's steroid moment, with offense coming early and often game after game.

But in a time when hitters reigned supreme, Martinez was the outlier, leading all starters in ERA (1.74), shutouts (4), WHIP (0.737), and ERA+ (291).

The 28-year-old righty led the AL in strikeouts (284) and held opposing batters to the lowest on-base percentage against (.213) in a century to finish with an 18-6 record.

As you might expect, Martinez swept all 28 first-place votes for his second straight unanimous Cy Young victory.

The Red Sox finished at 85-77, 2.5 games behind the hated Yankees in the AL East race.

However, Pedro's generational brilliance helped Sox fans cope as the Curse of the Bambino continued.

2000 Topps #60 Pedro Martinez Baseball Card

2000 Topps #180 Chipper Jones

Estimated PSA 10 Gem Mint Value: $60

Following his MVP season in 1999, Chipper Jones’ personal and professional life changed dramatically.

Jones remarried before the start of the 2000 season, tying the knot with Florida native Sharon Logonov in his parents’ front yard.

And on the business side, Jones’ award-winning 1999 campaign got him paid.

After replacing his agent with his childhood buddy, B.B. Abbott, during the negotiation process, the Atlanta Braves third baseman landed a six-year, $90 million extension, briefly making him the highest-paid position player in the game.

Jones provided a very nice return on Atlanta’s investment in 2000, hitting .311 with a .970 OPS, 36 home runs, 38 doubles, 118 runs scored, 14 stolen bases, and 111 RBIs in 686 plate appearances.

He finished 11th in the NL MVP voting, earning his fourth All-Star selection and second Silver Slugger award for his efforts.

NL East champions for the sixth straight year, the 95-win Braves looked to shed their “always a bridesmaid, rarely the bride” reputation in a marquee NLDS showdown with the NL Central champion St. Louis Cardinals.

Chipper did his part, going 4-for-12 with a double and a walk.

However, Atlanta’s pitching staff caved when the chips were down, giving up 24 runs in a resounding three-game sweep for the Cards.

2000 Topps #180 Chipper Jones Baseball Card

2000 Topps Traded #T46 Michael Young Rookie Card

Estimated PSA 10 Gem Mint Value: $50

Estimated Autograph PSA 10 Gem Mint Value: $150

From trade chip to Texas Rangers legend, Michael Young's time in the Lone Star State began with a three-player deal in July of 2000.

After hitting .313 for Toronto's High-A affiliate in 1999, Young was promoted to Double-A in 2000.

By mid-July, though, he was sent packing for Texas with pitcher Darwin Cubillan in a swap for veteran starter Esteban Loaiza.

Young split time between two organizations and two levels (Double-A and Triple-A) in 2000, slashing .291/.350/.437 with seven home runs, 37 doubles, ten triples, 25 stolen bases, 81 runs scored, and 79 RBIs.

It was enough for the infielder to get a brief look with the big-league squad late in the 2000 campaign.

The Rangers purchased his contract on September 27th, adding Young to their bench to close off a forgettable 71-91 season.

The 23-year-old future batting champion made his MLB debut as a pinch runner.

He received only two at-bats before the season's end, failing to notch a hit and striking out once.

In retrospect, it was a modest beginning to a stellar 13-year stay with the Rangers.

Like Miguel Cabrera, Young had a base card and an autograph card in the 2000 Topps Traded set.

2000 Topps Traded #T46 Michael Young Rookie Card
2000 Topps Traded #TTA46 Autographed Michael Young Rookie Card

2000 Topps #15 Derek Jeter

Estimated PSA 10 Gem Mint Value: $45

New York Yankees fans spent the entire 2000 season watching Derek Jeter play some of the best baseball of his career.

Named the AL's starting shortstop in the All-Star Game for the first time, Jeter captured game MVP honors with a 3-for-3 day, including a double and two RBIs.

He finished the year hitting .339 with a .896 OPS, 31 doubles, 15 home runs, 22 stolen bases, and 73 RBIs.

He also crossed the 200-hit threshold (201) for the third straight year.

In short, Jeter's regular-season performance was exemplary.

Yet, his postseason heroics were the real story in 2000.

After a rough ALDS against Oakland, Jeter hit .318 with a 1.055 OPS, two home runs, and five RBIs in a six-game ALCS win over Seattle.

And then, he hit another gear against the Mets.

Jeter's leadoff home run and triple in Game Four propelled the Yankees to the brink of a title.

And in the clinching Game Five, Jeter knotted up the contest with his second home run of the Series.

Altogether, Jeter hit .409 with a 1.344 OPS, two home runs, two doubles, a triple, and two RBIs to win his first and only World Series MVP award.

2000 Topps #15 Derek Jeter Baseball Card

2000 Topps #104 Rickey Henderson

Estimated PSA 10 Gem Mint Value: $45

Things are a bit different in New York and can turn on a dime.

After signing a two-year, $3.9 million deal with the Mets before the 1999 season, Rickey Henderson turned back the clock and became a fan favorite.

At 40 years young, Henderson hit .315 and stole 37 bases en route to being named Comeback Player of the Year by The Sporting News.

But the goodwill didn't last.

Accusations surfaced that Henderson and Bobby Bonilla were caught playing cards during New York's Game 6 loss to the Atlanta Braves in the NLCS, a defeat that ended the Mets' season.

Henderson denied the report vehemently and publicly challenged anyone to say differently.

And tensions mounted further when Henderson reported late to Spring Training.

By mid-May, the Mets released Henderson in a move that New York GM Steve Phillips called "addition by subtraction."

However, Rickey kept being Rickey and signed with Seattle for the remainder of the season, hitting .238 and swiping 31 bases to help push the M's to their first postseason since 1997.

In the playoffs, Henderson hit .286 with a double, a stolen base, three walks, and an RBI in six games played.

The Mariners fell in six to the eventual World Series champion Yankees in the ALCS, ending Henderson's quick stay in the Pacific Northwest on a down note.

2000 Topps #104 Rickey Henderson Baseball Card

2000 Topps #55 Frank Thomas

Estimated PSA 10 Gem Mint Value: $40

After a remarkable seven-year stretch from 1991-97 that led to seven straight top-eight MVP finishes, two top threes, and two AL MVP awards, injuries caused the Big Hurt to simply hurt.

Now a primary designated hitter, Chicago White Sox slugger Frank Thomas turned in two subpar seasons (by his lofty standards) in 1998-99.

He was noticeably bothered, and his swing wasn't as explosive as before.

In 2000, however, Thomas spotted a window of good health and kicked it open for a season comparable to his mid-90s peak to lead the White Sox to their first playoff berth since 1993.

The 32-year-old future Hall of Famer slashed .328/.436/.625 with 43 home runs, 44 doubles, 115 runs scored, and 143 RBIs in 707 plate appearances (582 at-bats).

Thomas stayed healthy, and the 95-win White Sox reaped the rewards.

The AL MVP runner-up to Oakland's Jason Giambi and the AL Comeback Player of the Year, the Big Hurt carried the Southside back to baseball relevance on his broad shoulders.

And while Chicago's stay in the postseason was abbreviated, a three-game sweep at the hands of the Mariners couldn't kill the good vibes of a vintage Thomas performance.

2000 Topps #55 Frank Thomas Baseball Card

2000 Topps #207 Lance Berkman

Estimated PSA 10 Gem Mint Value: $40

After a cup of coffee in 1999 serving as an injury replacement for Carl Everett, Houston Astros outfielder Lance Berkman looked to cement his spot on the big-league roster in 2000.

Showing no ill effects from a torn meniscus in his left knee the year before, Berkman paced the Astros in Spring Training with seven home runs.

However, he couldn't crack a stacked depth chart and began the season at Triple-A.

But he only stayed there for a short time.

When Moises Alou went down with an injury in late April, Berkman got his promotion.

And while he would eventually get demoted again for a short time, another injury to Roger Cedeno would bring Berkman back to the Bigs to stay.

Disqualified from the Rookie of the Year ballot due to service-time qualifications, Berkman was still arguably the best first-year player in the National League.

His .947 OPS paced all rookies with 400 or more plate appearances.

He also hit .297, slugged 21 home runs, and netted 28 doubles and 67 RBIs in 417 plate appearances.

The Astros scuffled to a dismal 72-90 finish, but the seeds were planted for an exciting new era in Houston.

2000 Topps #207 Lance Berkman Rookie Card

2000 Topps #446 C.C. Sabathia

Estimated PSA 10 Gem Mint Value: $40

Selected by the Cleveland Indians with the 20th overall pick of the 1998 MLB Draft, CC Sabathia was fast-tracked for the Majors.

Signed at just 17 years of age, it would take time for Sabathia to grow into his frame and harness his strikeout stuff.

Yet, his electric mound presence and seemingly unlimited upside made for a steady ascent toward Cleveland's MLB roster.

But it came with a sacrifice.

Come 2000, Sabathia was selected for the United States' 28-man Olympic Team roster.

However, his impending promotion took away his opportunity to play for the eventual Gold Medal-winning squad in Sydney.

Regardless, the future was bright for the hulking, 6-foot-7 lefty.

Sabathia led all Cleveland minor leaguers with 159 strikeouts and earned a roster spot for the 2000 Futures Game.

Rated as the top prospect in the Carolina League by Baseball America, the 19-year-old southpaw was also named the organization's Minor League Player of the Year.

By 2001, Sabathia earned a spot in Cleveland's starting rotation, and just like that, a Hall-of-Fame caliber 19-year career was about to begin.

2000 Topps #446 C.C. Sabathia and Mark Mulder Rookie Card

2000 Topps #451 Barry Zito and Ben Sheets Rookie Card

Estimated PSA 10 Gem Mint Value: $40

Possessing one of the most drop-dead gorgeous 12-6 curveballs of all time, Barry Zito headed into the 2000 campaign waiting for his shot to show it off.

Zito began the year in Triple-A, going 8-5 with a 3.19 ERA in 101.2 innings pitched before the A's called him up in mid-June.

The A's were a team on the rise, but Zito helped them rise further and faster when he got there, finishing with a 7-4 record and a fantastic 2.72 ERA in 14 starts.

Thanks largely to a new Big Three of Zito, Mark Mulder, and Tim Hudson, the Moneyball A's ended a seven-year playoff drought with an AL West title.

And when Zito got the nod for his first postseason start, he made it count.

In front of 56,915 unfriendly fans at Yankee Stadium and facing elimination, Zito gave up just one run and scattered seven hits over 5.2 innings for a Game Four win.

His clutch start saved Oakland's season, if only for a day.

Less than two years prior, Zito worked out for soon-to-be A's pitching coach Rick Peterson in a parking lot on a rain-soaked day in New Jersey.

Now, he was a legit MLB starter with a gutsy playoff win on his resume.

Ben Sheets spent ten years in the Majors and was named an All-Star four different times and finished eighth in the Cy Young vote in 2004.

Sheets was primarily known for his first eight years that he spent mostly as the ace in the Milwaukee Brewers lineup.

2000 Topps #451 Barry Zito and Ben Sheets Rookie Card

2000 Topps Baseball Cards In Review

In many ways, there weren't many drastic changes to the 2000 Topps baseball set that collectors hadn't seen before.

Instead of gold borders like the year before, silver borders highlighted an otherwise pretty straightforward design.

Subsets, inserts, random autographs and a Hank Aaron reprint series highlighting each of his base cards from 1954 to 1976 gave collectors plenty of variety.

Unopened Box of 2000 Topps Baseball Cards

The "Magic Moments" subset was an excellent idea that highlighted memorable accomplishments of ten big-name stars throughout their careers.

And, with five variations of each card, completing the entire fifty-card subset offered a decent challenge for the dedicated set builder.

Though there aren't any Hall of Fame rookies to help anchor the set checklist, there are many superstars and Hall of Famers to keep things interesting.

Overall, the 2000 Topps set is an excellent way to look back at some of the game's brightest talent at the turn of the millennium.

Ross Uitts

Ross is the founder of Old Sports Cards and has been collecting sports cards for over 30 years. He also loves to write about the hobby and has written for Beckett, Topps, SABR and of course, this website. Need help buying or selling cards or have a general question about the hobby? Contact him at [email protected]

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