9 Must-Have Baseball Cards For Every Die-Hard Los Angeles Dodgers Fan

The Los Angeles Dodgers made the biggest splash in free agency history, signing two-way superstar Shohei Ohtani to a 10-year, $700 million contract, the largest ever for a professional athlete. Dodgers collectors will surely be after any and all Ohtani cards this upcoming season, but that doesn’t mean they should turn a blind eye to cards from their historic past.

HobbyListings takes a look at the best Dodgers cards every fan needs. Did one of your favorites not make the cut? Sound off in the comments!

The List: Best Baseball Cards Every Los Angeles Dodgers Fan Needs

1. 1948 Leaf Jackie Robinson Rookie Card (#79)

1948 Leaf Jackie Robinson rookie card
1948 Leaf Jackie Robinson rookie card. (credit: eBay)

This card is a treasure, capturing Jackie Robinson in his rookie year. Robinson broke baseball’s color barrier in 1947 with the Dodgers, becoming a symbol of racial integration and a legendary figure in the sport. His impact extends far beyond his impressive career statistics. If you’re unable to afford this, his 1956 Topps card is a suitable replacement.

2. 1955 Topps Sandy Koufax Rookie Card (#123)

1955 Topps Sandy Koufax rookie card
1955 Topps Sandy Koufax rookie card. (credit: eBay)

Sandy Koufax’s rookie card is a must-have, representing one of the greatest pitchers in baseball history. His career with the Dodgers was marked by dominance, particularly from 1961 to 1966, during which he won three Cy Young Awards and was a key figure in multiple World Series victories.

3. 2008 Topps Update Clayton Kershaw Rookie Card (#UH240)

2008 Topps Update Clayton Kershaw rookie card
2008 Topps Update Clayton Kershaw rookie card. (credit: eBay)

Clayton Kershaw’s rookie card marks the beginning of a career that would see him become one of the best pitchers of his generation. A multiple Cy Young Award winner and an integral part of the Dodgers’ success in the 2010s, Kershaw is known for his pitching prowess and consistency.

4. 1949 Bowman Duke Snider Rookie Card (#226)

1949 Leaf Duke Snider rookie card
1949 Leaf Duke Snider rookie card. (credit: eBay)

Duke Snider would go on to be one of the key players for the Dodgers in the 1950s. A Hall of Famer, Snider was known for his powerful hitting and was a central figure in the Brooklyn Dodgers teams that contended for numerous pennants.

5. 1992 Bowman Mike Piazza Rookie Card (#461)

1992 Bowman Mike Piazza rookie card
1992 Bowman Mike Piazza rookie card. (credit: eBay)

Mike Piazza was one of the best hitting catchers in baseball history. Drafted as a favor to Tommy Lasorda, Piazza exceeded expectations, winning the Rookie of the Year in 1993 and becoming a 12-time All-Star.

6. 1981 Topps Traded Fernando Valenzuela Rookie Card (#850)

1981 Topps Traded Fernando Valenzuela rookie card
1981 Topps Traded Fernando Valenzuela rookie card. (credit: eBay)

The excitement of “Fernandomania” swept through Los Angeles and the baseball world in the early 1980s. A sensational pitcher, Fernando Valenzuela ignited enthusiasm and brought a unique charisma to the game.

7. 1957 Topps Don Drysdale Rookie Card (#18)

1957 Topps Don Drysdale rookie card
1957 Topps Don Drysdale rookie card. (credit: eBay)

Don Drysdale was one of the best pitchers of the 1960s. Known for his intimidating presence on the mound and his role alongside Koufax in the Dodgers’ rotation, Drysdale was a crucial part of the team’s success.

8. 1949 Bowman Roy Campanella Rookie Card (#84)

1949 Leaf Roy Campanella rookie card
1949 Leaf Roy Campanella rookie card. (credit: eBay)

Roy Campanella’s rookie card is a tribute to one of the greatest catchers in baseball history. A key player in the Dodgers’ success in the 1950s, Campanella was a three-time MVP before his career was tragically cut short by a car accident.

9. 1954 Topps Tommy LaSorda Rookie Card (#132)

1954 Topps Tommy LaSorda rookie card
1954 Topps Tommy LaSorda rookie card. (credit: eBay)

Tommy LaSorda is better known for his managerial career than his playing career. LaSorda led the Dodgers to two World Series titles – in 1981 and 1988 – and was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1997.

History of the Los Angeles Dodgers

The Los Angeles Dodgers, one of the most storied and successful franchises in Major League Baseball, boast a steep history that spans two coasts and features some of the most iconic moments and players in the sport. Here’s a look at the Dodgers’ storied past.

Brooklyn Beginnings

  • Established in 1883: The franchise began in Brooklyn, New York, and went through several name changes before settling on the Dodgers.
  • Ebbets Field Era: The team played at the historic Ebbets Field from 1913 to 1957, becoming a beloved part of Brooklyn culture.
  • Jackie Robinson’s Debut (1947): Jackie Robinson broke baseball’s color barrier, becoming the first African American to play in MLB in the modern era. His debut was not just a milestone for the Dodgers but a seminal moment in American history.
  • The Boys of Summer: The Brooklyn Dodgers were known as “The Boys of Summer,” a term coined by Roger Kahn in his book about the team. Key players included Robinson, Duke Snider, Roy Campanella, and Pee Wee Reese.

Move to Los Angeles

  • Relocation to Los Angeles (1958): In a move that transformed MLB, the Dodgers moved to Los Angeles, bringing major league baseball to the West Coast.
  • Dodger Stadium: In 1962, the Dodgers began playing in Dodger Stadium, one of the most iconic ballparks in the league.

The Los Angeles Era

  • Sandy Koufax and Don Drysdale: In the 1960s, the Dodgers were known for their pitching prowess, led by Sandy Koufax and Don Drysdale. Koufax’s perfect game in 1965 and a series of World Series appearances highlighted this era.
  • Fernandomania (1981): Fernando Valenzuela, a rookie from Mexico, took the baseball world by storm with his remarkable pitching and charismatic presence.
  • The 1988 World Series: Led by Orel Hershiser and Kirk Gibson, whose dramatic home run in Game 1 became one of the most memorable moments in World Series history, the Dodgers captured the title.
  • Tommy Lasorda’s Reign: As manager from 1976 to 1996, Lasorda became a Dodger legend, known for his passionate leadership and two World Series victories.

Key Figures Through the Decades

  • Mike Piazza: One of the best hitting catchers of all time, Piazza was a key player for the Dodgers in the 1990s.
  • Clayton Kershaw: A dominant pitcher of the modern era, Kershaw has spent his entire career with the Dodgers, earning multiple Cy Young Awards.
  • Vin Scully: The legendary broadcaster was the voice of the Dodgers for 67 seasons, from their days in Brooklyn through their time in Los Angeles.

Recent Success

  • 2010s and 2020s: The Dodgers have been a powerhouse in the National League, marked by consistent playoff appearances and a deep roster.
  • 2020 World Series Champions: The Dodgers won their first World Series title since 1988, a long-awaited victory for the franchise and its fans.

HobbyListings editor Matt Higgins contributed to this report.

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