The 1987 Topps Baseball card set is one of the most iconic issues ever released by Topps. The traditional-sized set featured cards of superstar players like Roger Clemens, Wade Boggs, Ozzie Smith, and others from that era. It is the “Big” subset cards from the release that are among the most sought-after and valuable from the entire 1980s decade. Let’s take a closer look at some of the most valuable 1987 Topps Big cards:

Perhaps the most iconic and valuable card from the entire 1987 set is the Ken Griffey Jr. rookie card (#131). Griffey was already one of the game’s most exciting young prospects at the time after being drafted number one overall by the Seattle Mariners in 1987. His blend of power, speed, defense and hitting ability foreshadowed what would become a Hall of Fame career. The Griffey Big card packs an extra visual punch by showcasing his wide-open leg kick and follow through in a considerably larger format than the standard issue that year. PSA 10 Gem Mint copies in pristine condition routinely sell for over $10,000. Even well-centered, highly graded PSA 8 or 9 copies command prices north of $1,000 due to Griffey’s popularity and status as one of the all-time greats.


Another huge star that had one of the mostvaluable Big cards was Toronto Blue Jays third baseman Kelly Gruber(#97). Like Griffey, Gruber was a highly touted young talent that went on to have an excellent MLB career. Possessing great power and a slick glove at the hot corner, Gruber was a core member of the Blue Jays teams that won back-to-back World Series in 1992 and 1993. His large-sized rookie is one of the tougher cards to find in top condition due to the increased printing surface area. PSA 10 specimens are worth over $2,000 presently, while PSA 9s can sell for $500-$800.

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Skilled switch-hitting catcher Benito Santiago was a bright young star for the San Diego Padres inthe late 1980s. His mammoth Big rookie card (#154) is also highly sought after, though not quite at the lofty value levels of Griffey or Gruber. Even so, a pristine PSA 10 Santiago is worth solid four-figuremoney today. Just below Mint condition PSA 9 copies still command prices exceeding $300 based on Santiago’s long, productive MLB tenure and the visual impact of his oversized rookie presentation.

Though he only had a relatively short MLB career compared to the other players mentioned, New York Mets catcher Mackey Sasser (#149) has one of the most visually striking Big rookies from 1987 Topps. Featuring a bold black and white photo of Sasser eagerly reaching for a high pitch, the card really pops in the enlarged Big format. Combined with his status as one of the rarest cards to find in top shape, pristine PSA 10 Sasser rookies have sold for north of $800. Even well-centered PSA 9s drag over $200 at auction.


While many stars had standard-sized flagship rookie cards in the 1987 Topps set, it’s the subset of enlarged “Big” variants that hold the greatest nostalgia, rarity and modern collector demand. From icons like Ken Griffey Jr. to talented players who had brief MLB tenures like Benito Santiago and Mackey Sasser, these oversized rookie presentaions remain hugely popular with enthusiasts over 30 years later. In top grades of PSA Gem Mint 10 or 9, specimens almost always command premium prices based on their visual impact and link to some of baseball’s brightest 1980s talents like Griffey, Gruber and others. The 1987 Topps Big set remains a benchmark for rookie card collecting from that unforgettable decade.

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