What is a Rookie Card?

While it has been somewhat clarified in recent years for the major sports, there is still debate as to what constitutes a player’s Rookie Card (RC). Since golf, at times, has gone decades without a major, pack-issued release, I’m not a fan of the strict rules currently in place for other sports, like baseball. It seems silly to me to consider 1981 Donruss as the Jack Nicklaus RC or 2001 Upper Deck #1 the Tiger Woods RC when each had many card options available in the 5-10 years prior. Additionally, some would not allow an oversized card to be considered a RC or one issued in a multi-sport set, but for some of the lesser HOFers this has lead to their RC being as much as 38 years after their first issued card or never having an official RC. My personal preference is to have the first card issued of a given player, whether the wider hobby considers it a RC or not. For purposes of completeness, I intend to list a players first card, their official RC, and any releases in between so you can decide for yourself what you prefer for your collection.

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