24 Hank Aaron Baseball Cards For Serious Collectors
If you collect Hank Aaron baseball cards then you know just how special they are.
And for good reason:
He's one of the biggest names in baseball history.
"The Hammer" boasted amazing power that led him to eventually surpassing Babe Ruth's career home record finishing with 755 in total.
Along with players like Mantle, Clemente, Mays and Koufax, he's one of the biggest names in the post-war collecting circle.
His cards are keys to just about every set in which he was featured. Putting together a collection of his cards in high grade takes extreme patience and deep pockets.
Let's take a look at the most important Hank Aaron baseball cards in the hobby.
1954 Topps #128 Hank Aaron Rookie Card
Estimated PSA 8 Value: $28,000
The 1954 Topps Hank Aaron rookie card is just a beautifully designed baseball card, plain and simple. To me, the bright orange background is what really makes the card pop. And the double image of the young Aaron gives collectors some great visuals to enjoy. Bowman did not feature Aaron in their 1954 set so this is his only recognized mainstream rookie card. It’s one of the most valuable baseball cards in the hobby so high grade copies will cost you an arm and a leg. The hands down key to the 1954 Topps set makes it a must have but watch out for poor centering as that’s the biggest challenge for this card.
1955 Bowman #179
Estimated PSA 8 Value: $1,650
Thankfully, Aaron made it into the 1955 Bowman set so we get to enjoy the legendary slugger with the unforgettable TV set design. Chipping and visible wear are constant issues due to the dark brown borders, however. Since Bowman didn’t feature him in their 1954 set, this would be Aaron’s only Bowman baseball card. A nice card overall, a young Aaron is pictured with his hands on his knees gazing upwards.
1955 Topps #47
Estimated PSA 8 Value: $2,500
Topps came out with its first horizontally-designed baseball cards in 1955 and Aaron’s card is super sharp-looking. Even though they used the same head shot pulled from his 1954 rookie card, they made up for it with a great overall design. The full color image of Aaron swinging the bat and facsimile signature are nice complements. And that yellow background makes the card really standout. It’s one of my favorite Hank Aaron baseball cards and a favorite of many collectors as well. 1955 was an important year for Aaron as he’d perform well enough to be selected to his first of 25 straight All-Star games.
1956 Topps #31
Estimated PSA 8 Value: $825
Same head shot again. But still a cool card. A repeat of the horizontal layout in 1956 makes this a great card overall but it just doesn’t have the same pop as his 1955 Topps card. The 1956 Topps cards weren’t as glossy as those in 1955 and at times the photos can appear more grainy. I do love the action shot of Aaron sliding into home plate, though, for one simple reason: it’s actually Willie Mays. Those are the kinds of strange things that make baseball card collecting even more fun, in my opinion.
1957 Topps #20
Estimated PSA 8 Value: $1,500
Notice anything weird about this card? Aaron is batting left-handed. The fact that Topps transposed the image of Aaron in their 1957 issue makes this a special card. But it doesn’t make it necessarily anymore valuable than if they had shown him batting right-handed. It’s just an odd printing error. The 1957 Topps set, as a whole, is a very popular set among vintage collectors and you can see why: the full-color photos on the front and entire career statistics on the back were firsts for Topps. Aaron led the league in runs, RBI and home runs in 1957 which was good enough to earn him his one and only Most Valuable Player award that season.
1958 Topps #30
Estimated PSA 8 Value (White Letters): $1,500
Estimated PSA 8 Value (Yellow Letters): $2,500
Cards numbered between 1 and 110 in the 1958 Topps set featured a unique characteristic: the players’s names on those cards were printed in either white or yellow letters. The yellow letter cards are more scarce therefore making them more valuable. Other than that printing difference, the condition issues between the two are very similar and limited mainly to centering challenges. The cards feature a lot if color and the large headshot of Aaron make this a very visually appealing card overall. Aaron earned his first of three consecutive Gold Glove Awards in 1958.
1959 Topps #380
Estimated PSA 8 Value: $450
The 1959 Topps Hank Aaron baseball card shows off a nice headshot of Aaron encircled atop a yellow background. The set design is instantly recognizable and makes it quickly stand out. It’s the cheapest of all his mainstream cards of the 1950’s but still it’s a key to not only the 1959 Topps set, but any serious Aaron collection.
1960 Topps #300
Estimated PSA 8 Value: $900
In 1960, Topps would release its only horizontally-designed cards of the entire decade. They split the cards up by placing a black and white image of players on the left and a full color photo of them on the right. Centering and print dots are usually the biggest condition concerns for this set. I like the 1960 Topps Hank Aaron card more than most of the rest of his 1960’s cards just because of the design alone. It was creative and featured a nice balance of color.
1961 Topps #415
Estimated PSA 8 Value: $390
The coloration of Aaron’s 1961 Topps card is great. And I like that it’s the only mainstream card in which he was depicted throwing a ball. It was just nice to see for a change. We all know him for his bat but that subtle difference just gives this card some uniqueness, in my opinion. The set overall was one of the better-printed sets of the vintage era making it easier to find in high grade. Still, you’ll see many cards with print dots and centering issues, though. A great card overall, Topps really got it right with the overall mix of coloration.
1962 Topps #320
Estimated PSA 8 Value: $725
Ah, those woodgrain borders. There is no other baseball card set quite like the 1962 Topps set and Aaron’s #320 card is a great one. The bright photo and clear blue sky in the background give this card some nice eye appeal. Centering and visual wear/chipping due to those woodgrain borders are key challenges making this card more difficult than others of the 1960’s to find in high grade. Aaron set a personal best for runs scored in a season in 1962 after crossing the plate 127 times.
1963 Topps #390
Estimated PSA 8 Value: $350
If I had to pick a favorite set of the 1960’s this one might be it. The Pete Rose rookie is far and away the key to the set by itself but Aaron’s card is one of the top ones as well. Topps turned up the creativity in 1963 with those small pictures of players encircled in the lower right. With Aaron’s card, in particular, I think the green bottom border and small orange circle in the lower right are a unique but nice color combo. I’m always surprised that Aaron’s 1963 Topps card isn’t more expensive than it is.
1964 Topps #300
Estimated PSA 8 Value: $250
The 1964 Topps Hank Aaron baseball card is pretty plain and straightforward. Topps didn’t have too many printing issues that year so cards in this set are arguably some of the highest quality among vintage baseball cards. The bright green team name along the top and bring green border along the bottom anchor a nice headshot of Aaron in the center. Not his most expensive card to find but an important one nonetheless.
1965 Topps #170
Estimated PSA 8 Value: $280
Not since his 1960 Topps card had Aaron been pictured holding a bat, easily what he was most famous for in his career. His 1965 Topps card shows him ready at the plate staring down an opposing pitcher. Centering and print dots are common concerns for 1965 Topps baseball cards but finding them in higher grade is not as challenging as some of his other cards. The green border and pennant in the lower left of the card with the Braves team name cap off an unforgettable design to this card.
1966 Topps #500
Estimated PSA 8 Value: $325
Not to take anything away from this card but I’d say it’s probably my least favorite Hank Aaron card of the 1960’s. Even with his 1968 and 1969 Topps cards replicating the same image between them, this one still just seems a bit too basic to me. Don’t get me wrong, it may not be as creatively designed as some of his other cards but it’s still a great card to own. The fact that 1966 was the first year the Braves were in Atlanta adds some historical importance to the card, too. Centering and a bit of tilting are the biggest condition issues for this card so be selective when searching for one.
1967 Topps #250
Estimated PSA 8 Value: $200
I’ve always liked this card simply for its imagery. The full color photo of Aaron following through on his signature swing gives collectors a great visual. It’s relatively inexpensive compared to some of his other cards but it’s still a great looking card.
1968 Topps #110
Estimated PSA 8 Value: $170
The 1968 Topps design is unforgettable. The burlap colored borders give it a unique design far different than any other set. These cards are relatively easy to find in high grade but centering and the presence of wear and chipping showing up on those borders are also issues. The image of Aaron is a bit intense as he’s ready at the plate and staring down the opposing pitcher. It would not be the last time this image was used. The Nolan Ryan rookie card is by far the most important card in the set but Aaron’s is still key.
1969 Topps #100
Estimated PSA 8 Value: $175
Topps took the image from the 1968 Topps Hank Aaron card and zoomed out a bit for their 1969 Aaron card. If I had to choose which one I liked better I guess I’d go with this one. The 1968 Topps design is unique but I just think this card looks better. I can’t really explain why. Centering and tilt are the most common condition issues for this set.
1970 Topps #500
Estimated PSA 8 Value: $145
It looks like Aaron was caught off guard a little bit when the Topps photographer snapped his picture for their 1970 set. Some collectors think that the grey borders of this set give the cards a bland feel but I think Aaron’s card still holds up well. He may be in the dugout with a bit of a surprised look on his face but hey, it’s a Hank Aaron card after all so what’s not to like? Centering can be a challenge for this card. And the grey borders show wear and tear a bit more easily of course.
1971 Topps #400
Estimated PSA 8 Value: $200
I’ve always loved the design of the 1971 Topps set and Aaron’s card does not disappoint. The bright team and personal information across the top and those famous black borders give this card a lot of character. The black borders are notorious for showing wear and tear very easily, though, so higher grades can be tougher to find. Aaron set personal bests in 1971 for most home runs in a season (47) and slugging percentage (.669).
1972 Topps #299
Estimated PSA 8 Value: $120
You either love or hate the 1972 Topps cards but I think Aaron’s card is pretty nice either way just for the photo Topps used alone. Collectors get a nice near-full-frontal look at Aaron standing ready at bat. The rest of the card is a bit electric in coloration and design but this is still a key Aaron card to own.
1973 Topps #100
Estimated PSA 8 Value: $75
What better way to depict one of the most feared hitters of all-time than with an image of him catching a fly ball. While the image Topps picked may not be the greatest, it’s still a very nice card. Aaron finished the 1973 season with 713 career home runs, one shy of tying Ruth’s all-time mark. Imagine the torture that fans and Aaron himself must have felt knowing they’d have to wait an entire off season before he could take another shot at the record.
1974 Topps #1
Estimated PSA 8 Value: $90
On April 8, 1974, Aaron did what was previously thought impossible: he surpassed Babe Ruth on the all-time home run list when he hit his 715th home run. Interestingly, when Topp printed Aaron’s card for their 1974 set he hadn’t actually broken the record yet. Still, Topps rewarded Aaron with his own card unique in design from any other in the entire set celebrating him as the all-time home run king. Fortunately, their printing gamble paid off and he turned out to be the home run king anyway. It’s such a great card and was really a nice gesture on Topps’ part by making him card #1 in the set.
1975 Topps #660
Estimated PSA 8 Value: $125
The Yount and Brett rookies are the anchors to the 1975 Topps set but Aaron remains an important part of it as always. The split yellow and red borders make the card really pop but I think that Topps could have come up with a better image of Aaron. They worked with what they had as Aaron was obviously transitioning to the Brewers for that season.
1976 Topps #550
Estimated PSA 8 Value: $65
The 1976 Topps #550 card was the last of the mainstream Hank Aaron baseball cards to be printed. An older Aaron in his last season stands ready at the plate in his Brewers uniform. The color scheme of this card gives it a lot of appeal. It’s his cheapest mainstream card but still an important step in completing a Hank Aaron card collection.
Hank Aaron Baseball Cards Wrap-Up
Hank Aaron baseball cards have held up in value and popularity for years and there’s no reason they shouldn’t continue to do so for years to come. With 24 mainstream cards to collect, collectors are treated to a large amount of outstanding cards to chase.
He left an unforgettable legacy in the game of baseball as one of the most feared and powerful hitters the game ever saw.
Amazingly, he belted 30 or more home runs in a season at least fifteen times. And although Barry Bonds eventually surpassed his career home run mark, Aaron still holds the records for the most career RBI (2,297), extra base hits (1,477), and total bases (6,856).
He was selected to the All-Star game 25 times (also a record) and is tied with Willie Mays and Stan Musial for most All-Star games played at 24.
I think the most incredible thing is that he was only selected as the MVP once in his amazing career.
Nevertheless, Aaron goes down as one of the game’s greatest of all-time and his cards will forever be held in high regard by numerous hobbyists.