The 1992 Fleer Ultra baseball card set was highly anticipated as it was the first release by Fleer since losing the license to produce Topps cards in 1989. Fleer went all out with the Ultra set, featuring sharp photography, embedded metal flake technology in the borders that shimmered in light, and an exclusive Ken Griffey Jr. rookie card that is one of the most iconic and valuable of all time. Now nearly 30 years later, some of the top rookie and star players featured in the 1992 Fleer Ultra set command huge premiums. Here are the 10 most valuable 1992 Fleer Ultra baseball cards based on PSA 10 gem mint condition:
Ken Griffey Jr. #339 – Once setting auction records for vintage baseball cards, the Griffey Jr. rookie is the undisputed king of the 1992 Fleer Ultra set. Still one of the most desirable and iconic rookie cards ever made, PSA 10 examples regularly top $100,000 at auction with some crossing $200,000. Even lower graded Griffey rookies in PSA 8-9 condition can fetch $20,000+. The card features a clean photo of Griffey swinging with gorgeous holograms that add to its investment grade appeal.
Frank Thomas #80 – While not as hyped as the Griffey, the Frank Thomas rookie is equally valuable in high grades. Often considered the 2nd best card in the set behind Griffey, PSA 10 Thomas rookies have sold for over $50,000. He was already a star coming off an AL MVP season in 1993 and his rookie shows immense promise. The photo of Thomas towering over a catcher is classic and the card design highlights his baseball talents.
Chipper Jones #120 – As the superstar third baseman’s career evolved, his 1992 Ultra rookie rose up the value ranks. Jones enjoyed a Hall of Fame career with the Braves and brought the franchise stability for over a decade. PSA 10 examples have reached $30,000 at auction from serious Chipper collectors. The card features an action shot of Jones batting with shiny rainbow holograms along the borders.
Rafael Palmeiro #317 – One of the rare 30 home run, 30 stolen base threats of his era, Palmeiro put up consistent All-Star numbers for over two decades. His rookie is highly sought after mainly due to his longevity and statistical success in the majors. Top graded PSA 10 Palmeiro rookies now trade hands for $15,000-20,000 each. With over 500 career home runs and 3,000 hits, the stats back up this rookie card’s high value.
John Smoltz #346 – Often overshadowed in collectible circles by some of the bigger name 1992 rookies, the Smoltz rookie is quietly gaining steam as a valuable and underrated gem. Smoltz went on to have a Hall of Fame caliber career as a dominant pitcher for the Braves highlighted by a Cy Young award in 1996. PSA 10 examples are achieving $10,000+ price tags as one of the set’s best pitching rookie options.
Derek Jeter #328 – As the Captain and face of the Yankees dynasty for two decades, Jeter’s 1992 Ultra rookie holds steady value but does not match cards of similar star power. That can mostly be attributed to the overproduction of this set compared to others holding Jeter rookies. Still, a perfectly graded PSA 10 sells in the $8,000-10,000 range for serious Yankees collectors chasing their captain’s early cardboard.
Mo Vaughn #320 – After being a surprise AL MVP in 1995, Vaughn’s stock as a star first baseman rose and so did demand for his Ultra rookie. Grading a high PSA 10, Vaughn rookies have cracked $7,500 at auction. He had serious power and hit for average in the heart of the Red Sox lineup for years after this rookie. In top condition, it shows glimpses of the potent bat that made him a star third year in the league.
Jeff Bagwell #237 – One of the most complete hitters of the 1990s with underrated power, Bagwell blasted 449 career home runs and made four All-Star teams for the Astros. With Hall of Fame caliber stats, his 1992 Ultra rookie has gained a lot of traction in recent years. Top graded PSA 10 examples dip slightly under the $7,000 mark last time they changed hands. Bagwell’s smooth left-handed swing looks primed for big things in this rookie card photo.
Don Mattingly #277 – Long considered one of the greatest hitters without a ring, Mattingly’s cardboard maintained strong value during and after his playing career came to an early end due to back issues. As the face of the 1980s Yankees, his Ultra rookie plays well to collectors of that dynasty era even decades later. In PSA 10 condition, Mattingly rookies reach the $6,000-7,000 range on the current market. A true 5-tool talent during his peak years.
Barry Bonds #305 – While overshadowed a bit by his massive 1993 Finest rookie card surge, the Bonds Ultra has gained notoriety all its own over the years. Bonds would go on to smash the all-time home run record and win seven NL MVPs. In a true PSA 10 gem, examples top out around $6,000 for serious Bonds collectors or 1990s vintage set makers. He was already a monster as a rookie evidenced by the early cardboard.
The Griffey Jr. rookie reigns supreme as the most desired and valuable card from the iconic 1992 Fleer Ultra set. High grade copies of star player debuts like Frank Thomas, Chipper Jones, and John Smoltz have all cracked the $10,000+ threshold in PSA 10. After nearly 30 years, the investment appeal of this seminal 1990s set shows no signs of slowing down with its top rookies and stars leading the hobby’s vintage market.