This 1957 Topps Mays went for $9,028.
This 1957 Topps Mays went for $9,028.

A couple of very noteworthy auctions closed over the last 14 days and the bidding on the T206 Wagner card has begun.

First, let’s take a look at the results of a few PSA auctions.

Superior Sports Auctions Showcases Quality and Variety to the Tune of $1,279,622

Superior Sports Auctions, one of the world’s leading sports auction houses, held a one-day auction that generated tremendous interest. The auction closed final bids amounting to $1,279,622. The auction featured everything from key pre-war cards to pristine modern rookies in all major sports. The catalogue also included some interesting pieces of memorabilia.

The vast majority of the auction featured high-quality PSA graded cards with many lots destroying known price records. Whether the cards were key legends of the game or tough commons, bidder interest was outstanding. Here’s a peek at 30 selected highlights from the sale:

Card

PSA Grade

Price Realized

1933 Goudey George Connally #27 8 $13,800
1933 Goudey Floyd Vaughan #229 9 $5,290
1941 Play Ball Ted Williams #14 9 $48,875
1948 Leaf Joe DiMaggio #1 8 $24,150
1956 Topps Pee Wee Reese #260 9 $3,122
1957 Topps Willie Mays #10 9 $9,028
1958 Topps Mickey Mantle All-Star #487 9 $4,025
1959 Topps Mickey Mantle #10 9 $21,850
1961 Topps Juan Marichal #417 10 $4,376
1963 Topps Stan Musial #250 10 $13,800
1963 Topps Whitey Ford #446 10 $4,830
1964 Topps Willie Stargell #342 10 $1,121
1963 Topps Football Jim Brown #14 9 $4,485
1963 Fleer Roberto Clemente #56 9 $4,485
1965 Topps Batting Leaders #2 9 $949
1967 Topps N.L. RBI Leaders #242 9 $1,450
1968 Topps Willie Mays #50 10 $16,100
1968 Topps Hank Aaron #110 10 $12,075
1968 Topps Orlando Cepeda #200 10 $1,064
1968 Topps Johnny Bench #247 10 $7,820
1957 Topps Basketball Bob Cousy #17 9 $12,075
1957 Topps Basketball Jim Loscutoff #39 9 $2,645
1952 Topps Harry Simpson #193 8 $8,913
1959 Topps Duke Snider #20 9 5,520
1963 Topps Lou Brock #472 9 $2,013
1973 Topps Willie Mays #305 9 $1,668
1965 Topps Football Joe Namath #122 8 $5,405
1986 Fleer Akeem Olajuwon #82 10 $2,444
1984 Topps Hockey Wayne Gretzky #51 10 $3,910
1968 Topps Group of 96 commons 9 $10,638

Many of the aforementioned prices either broke known price records or came very close. Chris Porter, Director of Auctions at Superior Sports, felt that the final tally was expected. “This auction featured a great variety of high-grade sportscards so we felt it had a great chance to break the $1.2 million mark,” explained Porter. “Whether you were a set builder or just wanted a key card to add to your collection, this auction had it all.”

As far as market trends were concerned, Porter noticed that there were a few items that really brought out some intense bidding. “The key star card in high-grade always generate a lot of interest but there were some definite surprises in the auction,” said Porter. “League leader cards seem to really be hot. With these cards, collectors can own a card that features many of the top stars for a fraction of the regular card price. They have become popular amongst collectors.”

Porter noticed a few more trends as well. “Low population commons from key sets continue to do unbelievably well,” explained Porter. “There were a few examples from the 1952 Topps and 1933 Goudey set that brought absolutely phenomenal numbers. Set builders realize that certain commons are actually much tougher than many of the stars so the bidding can be fierce.”

Two examples of Porter’s claim were the 1933 Goudey George Connally and the 1952 Topps Harry Simpson. Those two low population commons brought $13,800 and $8,913 respectively, each price exceeding the average cost of a 1952 Topps or 1933 Goudey common by a huge margin. Those sets are arguably the two most popular sets in the hobby, so the interest makes a great deal of sense.

One set, from the 1960’s, seemed to be “on fire” throughout the auction according to Porter. “This auction contained many high-grade lots featuring cards from the 1968 Topps baseball set and the response from bidders definitely exceeded expectations,” explained Porter. “The high-end stars broke price records and high-end commons brought great numbers. Overall, all the lots that featured cards from this set did extremely well.”

Superior Sports will be holding their next auction in September and are currently seeking high-quality consignments for future auctions. If you are interested in consigning your sports collectibles, Superior can be reached at 231-922-9862.

PSA Rookies Steal Spotlight at Goodwin Auction

In a recent Goodwin & Co. PSA card auction, it was clear that size did not matter. A 45-lot auction, very small in comparison to today’s monster auctions, brought an amazing $606,169. There was one very obvious reason for the tremendous success, quality. Almost every lot contained a key sportscard in high-grade. When you combine popularity with rarity, the results can be staggering and they were. Here’s a peak at 20 of the highlights:

Card
PSA
Grade
Price
Realized
1933 Goudey #181 Babe Ruth
9
$87,729
1948 Leaf Jackie Robinson RC
9
$43,615
1911 T206 Jake Beckley
9
$12,839
1962 Topps Mickey Mantle #318 (switch hitter)
9
$9,702
1962 Topps Mickey Mantle
9
$18,069
1963 Topps Mickey Mantle
9
$18,161
1964 Topps Mickey Mantle
9
$16,908
1949 Bowman Satchel Paige
9
$34,837
1939 Play Ball Ted Williams RC
9
$71,588
1948 Bowman Yogi Berra RC
9
$8,845
1955 Topps Roberto Clemente RC
9
$46,774
1955 Topps Sandy Koufax RC
9
$25,596
1955 Topps Double Headers Hank Aaron
9
$8,283
1957 Topps Ted Williams
9
$14,645
1957 Topps Don Drysdale RC
9
$9,130
1962 Topps Lou Brock RC
9
$2,378
1963 Topps Stan Musial
9
$2,843
1933 Goudey #53 Babe Ruth
8
$58,220
1940 Play Ball Joe DiMaggio
8
$15,159
1941 Play Ball Joe DiMaggio
8
$29,692

As you may have noticed, the key rookie cards brought tremendous numbers. In fact, most of the prices realized for those rookie cards were record breakers. The success was certainly welcomed, but not too surprising to Bill Goodwin, president of Goodwin & Co. “The results were fantastic across the board,” said an ecstatic Goodwin. “ There were some legendary figures, like the Robinson rookie in high-grade and from tough issues, so the interest was not a real surprise.”

Goodwin said that besides the 1948 Leaf Robinson, the Williams card received a ton of attention. “For years the Williams rookie card has been overlooked,” Goodwin explained. “Williams is among the top five players of all-time. This card was mint and it is from the pre-war era. In my mind the interest in this example was totally justifiable.”

Another price that blew people away was the price realized for the 1957 Drysdale rookie. Goodwin shared his thoughts about this tough rookie card. “This one has always been a hard card to find in top grades,” Goodwin said. “Some collectors look for key rookie cards or rookies of Hall of Fame pitchers, while others focus on the great Dodger players. “When you add all the relevant factors together, it makes sense that the competition was fierce.”

Goodwin was pleased most, not by the prices, but with the bidder participation. “The industry is alive and growing,” explained Goodwin. “There were a large amount of new collectors that signed up with us for our auction. That’s probably the best news of all because the market is very healthy right now.”

Goodwin plans on running another high-grade auction in the next few months. When it happens, we will keep you informed of the results.

The Week of the Wagner

Finally, the much anticipated auction of the famous PSA 8 T206 Honus Wagner card has begun with less than a week to go. As with most auctions, the bidding doesn’t really begin to “heat up” until the last day or so. The card, at this point, has received bids placing the card at $600,000. With the buyer’s premium of 15%, the card is actually at $690,000 as of July 11.

Even though that price is already a record price for any sportscard in history, most experts believe that the card will easily exceed the $1,000,000 mark and some believe it may even approach the $2,000,000 mark. Whatever the final bid may be, the close of the sale will certainly receive its share of press. In fact, the media hype surrounding the sale should make the bidding even more fierce as the importance of the sportscard rarity is put into focus.

Hailed as the “Mona Lisa” of sportscard collecting, this card has always received attention at every sale. The last two times this card has come up for auction, it has brought prices of $451,000 and $640,500 respectively. At one time, former Los Angeles Kings owner Bruce McNall and hockey legend Wayne Gretzky jointly owned the card. The card was later purchased by Wal-Mart (privately) for the purposes of a national sales contest. After the winner was announced, Christies then auctioned the card for the $640,500 sum.

Judging by the increase in market value of high-grade PSA graded sportscards, the final bid should be very impressive. We will have a full report when the auction closes, so keep your eyes peeled.


Joe Orlando has been an advanced collector of sportscards and memorabilia for over 25 years. Orlando attended Westmont College in Santa Barbara, California where he studied communications and was the starting catcher for the baseball team. After a brief stint in the minor leagues, Orlando obtained a Juris Doctor from Whittier Law School in Southern California in the spring of 1999. During the last fourteen years, Orlando has authored several collecting guides and dozens of articles for Collectors Universe, Inc. Orlando has also authored two books for Collectors Universe. Orlando's first book, The Top 200 Sportscards in the Hobby, was released in the summer of 2002. His second book, Collecting Sports Legends, was released in the summer of 2008. Orlando has appeared on several radio and television programs as a hobby expert including ESPN's award-winning program Outside the Lines and HBO's Real Sports, as the featured guest. Currently, Orlando is the President of PSA and PSA/DNA, the largest trading card and sports memorabilia authentication services in the hobby. He is also Editor of the company's nationally distributed Sports Market Report, which under Orlando's direction has developed into a leading resource in the market. Orlando also contributed the foreword and last chapter to The T206 Collection: The Players and Their Stories, a 2010 release, and to The Cracker Jack Collection: Baseball's Prized Players, a 2013 release.