Johan Santana made his MLB debut on April 3, 2000, with the Minnesota Twins where he would make an immediate impact. Santana pitched eight seasons with the Twins before he ultimately signed with the New York Mets where he pitched the final four seasons of his illustrious career.
Santana exceeded his rookie limits during the 2000 season, where he posted a 2-3 record with a 6.49 ERA over 30 games. There was only one other time in Santana’s career that he had a losing record and that was ultimately his last season in the Majors.
Santana was a four-time All-Star (2005, 2006, 2007, and 2009), and won the Cy Young Award two times (2004 and 2006). In 2004, Santana posted a 20-6 record with 2.61 ERA. Santana appeared in 34 games that season and had 228 innings pitched, struck out 265 (which was the most in his career), while only walking 54.
In 2006, Santana had very similar numbers, with a 19-6 with a 2.77 ERA. In the 233.2 innings he pitched during that season, Santana started 34 games, while striking out 245 batters and only walked 47.
Santana was a great pitcher for so many years before his career ultimately came to an end. Santana’s career numbers ended up being a 139-78 record with a 3.20 ERA. Santana started 284 games and appeared in 360 games. In those 360 career games, Santana pitched in 2,025.2 innings, struck out 1,988, while only walking 567 batters, and gave up only 220 home runs throughout his career.
More baseball: 10 most profitable baseball cards to buy right now
As outlined, Johan Santana may have ultimately had a short career, walking away from the game at the ripe age of 33, but while he was on a Major League mound, he was successful and one of the most feared pitchers of his era. Since he had such a great career, Santana’s rookie cards are sought after. Let’s take a look at the top three Johan Santana Rookie cards and what their futures may hold if you happen to have one of these.
Here are three of the best John Santana rookie cards that investors should pay close attention to.
2000 Fleer Mystique #173
The 2000 Fleer Mystique Johan Santana rookie card, as soon as you look at it, takes you back to a simpler time in not only the world but in baseball in general. Looking at the young Johan on this card he is a lanky-looking left-handed pitcher. When taking this photo, no one knew what kind of career Santana would have. The photo is of a young Santana in what seems to be the beginning of his windup
2000 Topps Finest Refractors #262
With a print run of only 1000 cards, the Johan Santana 2000 Topps Finest Refractors has a known limited quality. The front of the card has an image of Santana with a smile and a Twins cap on his head. The back of the card has listed his “balanced repertoire” as his “finest feature” and discusses his deadly breaking balls such as his curveball and change-up.
2000 Topps Finest #262
The same card as above minus the refractors aspect, the Johan Santana Topps Finest is another great choice for investors. 2000 was Santana’s rookie year and he broke onto the MLB scene in a huge way, dazzling fans with his disastrous strikeouts. While lacking the smaller print run that the refractor card has, this one is still a good option for those that desire a lower entry-point.
The most valuable Johan Santana Rookie Card is the 2000 Topps Finest RC Serial /3000 #262.
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