7 Must-Have Oakland Athletics Baseball Cards For Die-Hard Fans

It’s been a rough time for Oakland Athletics fans as owner John Fischer seemingly gave up on the city and community as he plans to move the franchise to Las Vegas. Even though A’s fans don’t have much to cheer for nowadays, that doesn’t mean that should stop collecting their favorite franchise players.

To help fans with their collections, HobbyListings has put together a list of the top Athletics baseball cards. Did we miss one of your favorites? Let us know in the comments below!

The List: Best Oakland Athletics Baseball Cards Every Fan Needs

1. 1969 Topps Reggie Jackson Rookie Card (#260)

1969 Topps Reggie Jackson rookie card
1969 Topps Reggie Jackson rookie card. (credit: eBay)

Known for his power hitting, Reggie Jackson played a key role in the Athletics’ three consecutive World Series titles in the early 1970s. Jackson, one of baseball’s most charismatic and influential players, was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1993.

2. 1980 Topps Rickey Henderson Rookie Card (#482)

1980 Topps Rickey Henderson rookie card
1980 Topps Rickey Henderson rookie card. (credit: eBay)

Rickey Henderson’s rookie card is iconic, capturing the beginning of a career that saw him become the greatest base stealer in MLB history. Henderson spent 14 seasons with the A’s over four different stints, setting numerous records and redefining the role of the leadoff hitter.

3. 1965 Topps Catfish Hunter Rookie Card (#526)

1965 Topps Catfish Hunter rookie card
1965 Topps Catfish Hunter rookie card. (credit: eBay)

Catfish Hunter was a key part of the A’s dynasty in the 1970s, Hunter was known for his pitching prowess, throwing a perfect game in 1968 and winning multiple World Series with the team. The 1974 AL Cy Young Award winner was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1987l.

4. 1969 Topps Rollie Fingers Rookie Card (#597)

1969 Topps Rollie Fingers rookie card
1969 Topps Rollie Fingers rookie card. (credit: eBay)

Rollie Fingers’ rookie card is a must-have, representing one of the best relief pitchers in baseball history. With his distinctive handlebar mustache and excellent pitching, Fingers was instrumental in the A’s World Series victories and won the AL MVP and Cy Young awards in 1981.

5. 1986 Donruss Jose Canseco Rookie Card (#39)

1986 Donruss Jose Canseco rookie card
1986 Donruss Jose Canseco rookie card. (credit: eBay)

In what many thought would make us millionaires back in the day, Jose Canseco’s Donruss Rated Rookie card captures the early career of a player who was one of the most dynamic in baseball during the late 1980s. A key figure in the “Bash Brothers” era with Mark McGwire, Canseco was the 1986 Rookie of the Year and the 1988 AL MVP.

6. 1985 Topps Mark McGwire Olympic Card (#401)

1985 Topps Mark McGwire Olympic card.
1985 Topps Mark McGwire Olympic card. (credit: eBay)

Mark McGwire’s Olympic card is significant for capturing the start of a career that saw him become one of the most feared power hitters in baseball. With the A’s, he set the rookie record for home runs in 1987 and was a key player in the 1989 World Series-winning team.

7. 1976 Topps Dennis Eckersley Rookie Card (#98)

1976 Topps Dennis Eckersley rookie card
1976 Topps Dennis Eckersley rookie card. (credit: eBay)

With the A’s, Dennis Eckersley became one of the most dominant closers in baseball, leading the team to three straight World Series appearances from 1988 to 1990 and winning the AL MVP and Cy Young awards in 1992.

History of the Oakland Athletics

The Oakland Athletics have a rich history marked by iconic players, groundbreaking strategies, and multiple championships. Here’s an overview of the journey of the Athletics, from their early days to where they stand now.

Early Beginnings and Philadelphia Years

  • Established in 1901: The Athletics were one of the eight charter franchises of the American League, originally based in Philadelphia.
  • Philadelphia Athletics Era: Managed by Connie Mack, the Philadelphia A’s were a powerhouse in the early 20th century, winning World Series titles in 1910, 1911, 1913, 1929, and 1930.

The Kansas City Interlude

  • Move to Kansas City (1955-1967): After a period of decline, the franchise moved to Kansas City in 1955. This era was marked by mediocre performances, but it set the stage for the team’s subsequent success in Oakland.

The Oakland Dynasty

  • Relocation to Oakland (1968): The move to Oakland marked a new chapter for the Athletics.
  • The 1970s Dynasty: Under the ownership of Charles O. Finley, the A’s won three consecutive World Series titles in 1972, 1973, and 1974, a feat achieved through a combination of talented players and innovative management.
  • Key Players: This era featured stars like Reggie Jackson, Catfish Hunter, Rollie Fingers, and Vida Blue, who became household names in baseball.

The “Billy Ball” Era

  • 1980s Resurgence: Managed by Billy Martin in the early 1980s, the A’s adopted an aggressive style of play known as “Billy Ball.” Although this period didn’t bring championships, it revived interest in the team and laid the groundwork for future success.

The Bash Brothers and the 1989 Championship

  • 1980s to Early 1990s: The A’s, with stars like Mark McGwire, Jose Canseco, Rickey Henderson, and Dennis Eckersley, were a dominant force in baseball, culminating in a World Series win in 1989.

The Moneyball Era

  • Early 2000s: Under General Manager Billy Beane, the Athletics gained fame for their “Moneyball” strategy, using sabermetrics to assemble competitive teams despite a low payroll. This approach, highlighted in the book and film “Moneyball,” has had a lasting impact on the sport.

Recent Years

  • To put it simply, the organization has been a dumpster fire lately. Owner John Fischer never put money into the team and decided to uproot the franchise for Las Vegas, alienating fans.

Key Players in Modern Times

  • Barry Zito, Tim Hudson, and Mark Mulder: Known as the “Big Three,” this trio of pitchers was crucial to the A’s success in the early 2000s.
  • Rickey Henderson: One of the greatest leadoff hitters and base stealers in baseball history, Henderson had multiple stints with the A’s.

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