Pete Rose is considered one of the greatest hitters in Major League Baseball history. Nicknamed “Charlie Hustle” for his gritty playing style and hard-nosed determination to win at all costs, Rose established himself as one of the sport’s icons during his playing days from 1963-1986. He still holds the record for most career hits with 4,256, a mark that seems nearly untouchable.

Rose’s incredible career achievements have made his baseball cards some of the most sought after and valuable in the hobby. Here’s a look at the top 10 most desirable and expensive Pete Rose cards on the market today:

1972 Topps #516 – Considered one of Rose’s earliest star cards from the height of his career with the Cincinnati Reds, the 1972 Topps #516 shows Rose batting from both sides of the plate. Condition is key for these seventies Rose cards as they are prone to issues like centering problems or edge wear from heavy use back in the day. High grade examples in mint condition can fetch over $150.

1967 Topps #547 – Rose’s rookie card season was in 1963 but he didn’t receive much fanfare in the early years and thus his 1967 Topps is one of his more prominent early issue cards. It captures him in a Reds uniform ready to swing the bat. High grade copies in Gem Mint 10 can reach up to $200 thanks to its significance as one of Rose’s first star level cards.


1973 Topps #73 – This card depicts Rose in action batting during the 1973 season when he set the NL record (later broken) for most hits in a single season with 230. Ranked among his most iconic cards, a PSA 10 example sold for around $300 in recent years showing the strong collector interest in high grade seventies Rose issues.

1970 Topps #490 – Many consider 1970 to be the peak of Rose’s playing career when he won the NL MVP and batting title. This card features a nice action photo of him at bat. Top condition PSA 10 copies have sold for around $400 due to the card’s status from Rose’s standout 1970 campaign.

1975 Topps #138 – The 1975 season was when Rose broke the all-time NL career hits record. Not surprising then that his ’75 Topps card marking this milestone is highly valuable to collectors. Just a small printing as well boosts its cachet. PSA 10 copies regularly sell for $500 or more.


1976 Topps #230 – This issue shows Rose driving the ball to the outfield fence in color during his 1976 season. Despite some print flaws and centering issues common to the set, high grade copies still exchange hands for over $600. Considered among the best of the late seventies Rose cards prior to his record breaking season.

1980 Topps Traded #T86 – As Rose neared breaking Ty Cobb’s all-time hits record in 1980, Topps rushed out this special “Traded” update card showing his then career hit total of 4,000. Only printed in limited quantities, a PSA 10 recently sold at auction for nearly $900. Very tough card to acquire in pristine condition.

1978 Topps #500 – This is viewed by many as Rose’s most aesthetically pleasing card capturing him batting left-handed with follow through against a yellow background. From his historic season breaking Cobb’s record, high cert PSA 10 specimens can demand upwards of $1,000. A true star item for any serious Rose PC.

1969 Topps #500 – Widely considered one of the rarest and most visually appealing cards in the entire Rose collection. It features a closer action shot and brighter colors than typical for the set. Even low grade copies fetch four figures due to the huge demand. Pristine PSA 10 examples recently broke the $2,000 mark at auction.


1977 Topps #700 – As the pinnacle card of Rose’s record breaking campaign, his ’77 Topps card showing his new all-time hits record stands out as the most valuable and recognizable in his entire series. In Gem Mint condition the card can sell for astronomical sums upwards of $3,000-$4,000 due to its incredible rarity and historic significance. Simply a truly iconic piece of baseball memorabilia.

In summary, Pete Rose’s career achievements and playing longevity resulted in a vast collection of amazing vintage cards that any fan or investor would covet. While the prices at the high end continue rising with each new record sale, his early 70s issues still represent affordable collectibles for building sets from that exciting Reds era. Rose’s story and statistics may be complicated, but his unmatched production on the field will ensure his cards remain a headlining part of the hobby for generations to come.

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