1911 Gold Border Ty Cobb T205 PSA 8 brought $60,439
1911 Gold Border Ty Cobb T205 PSA 8 brought $60,439

Auctions, auctions, auctions, here we go again. There never seems to be a shortage of auctions to report, especially during this time of the year. A giant offering from Mastro, an initial offering from Memory Lane, and another solid showing from Lelands tops the Market Report this week. After a few auction recaps, I have provided a Christmas wish list from an anonymous collector. Wait till you see this one.

Monstrous Mastro Auction Breaks $9 Million Barrier

This is all I have to say; the auction catalogue weighed about 4 pounds! That being said, this catalogue was not only heavy in terms of weight, but it was also heavy in quality. With the exception of the Barry Halper sale of 1999, no other auction has grossed near this amount. In fact, it was the largest multi-consignor auction ever. There was just about something for everyone in this sale including sportscards, bats, jerseys and autographs galore. Needless to say, many records were broken during this historical sale. Here's a peek at some of the highlights.



   

Item   

 Price Realized 

1      N172 Old Judge Collection      $225,433 
2      Signed Baseball Book by John Ward      $27,104 
3      G20 1887 Allen & Ginter Champions Banner      $24,653 
4      N172 Old Judge Uncut Sheet      $44,823 
5      Christy Mathewson Signed Photo      $19,860 
6      PSA 2 T206 Ty Cobb with Brand Back      $23,262 
7      T204 Ramly Complete Set      $69,968 
8      Walter Johnson Tuxedo Tobacco Display      $21,300 
9      PSA 6 M101-5 Sporting News 1915 Babe Ruth      $18,725 
10      1915 Cracker Jack Set w/Album      $97,188 
11      E121 American Caramel Collection      $120,877 
12      E126 1927 American Caramel #38 Babe Ruth      $22,152 
13      1939 First Day Cover Signed by all 11 Inductees      $15,297 
14      PSA 9 1948 Bowman #69 George Mikan      $47,569 
15      1920's Bobby Jones Signed Photo      $12,390 
16      Ruth, Maris, McGwire Signed Baseball      $32,765 
17      Rube Waddell Signed Baseball      $29,786 
18      Ty Cobb Signed Baseball      $23,341 
19      Lou Gehrig Signed Baseball      $61,046 
20      M101-4 1916 Sporting News Set (PSA graded)      $74,204 
21      PSA 6 1960 Fleer #80 Tinker/Martin Error      $4,574 
22      1911-15 Chick Gandil Game-Used Bat      $15,496 
23      1921-31 Rogers Hornsby Game-Used Bat      $21,120 
24      1931 Earle Combs Game-Used Bat      $10,568 
25     1953 Jackie Robinson Game-Used Bat      $29,078 
26      Reggie Jackson Game-Used Rookie Bat      $2,656 
27      1950's Mickey Mantle Game-Used Bat w/UD Auto      $43,244 
28      Earliest Known Photo of Babe Ruth      $43,679 
29      1928 St. Louis Stars Negro League Photo      $18,511 
30      1978 Catfish Hunter World Series Ring      $26,849 
31      1927 Babe Ruth/Lou Gehrig Signed Photo      $36,098 
32      1963 Pete Rose Game-Used Jersey     $39,312 
33      1992 Pedro Martinez Game-Used Rookie Jersey      $9,390 
34      PSA 8 E93 1910 Standard Caramel Honus Wagner      $11,243 
35      PSA 8 T205 1911 Gold Border Ty Cobb      $60,439 
36      PSA 8 1933 Goudey Jimmie Foxx #29      $18,511 
37      PSA 9 1934 Goudey Lou Gehrig #61    $52,854 
38      PSA 8 1948 Leaf Babe Ruth #3      $15,283 
39      PSA 9 1955 Bowman Ernie Banks #242      $9,380 
40      PSA 9 1962 Topps Sandy Koufax #5      $22,690 
41      PSA 10 1968 Topps Mickey Mantle #280      $17,603 
42      PSA 9 1958 Topps Sluggers Supreme #321      $9,182 
43      PSA 10 1993 SP Derek Jeter Rookie #279      $17,476 
44      1916-1920 Ty Cobb Game-Used Bat      $43,244 
45      PSA 3 T206 Honus Wagner      $145,314


Remember that this is just a small sampling of highlights. There were a tremendous amount of strong prices to report. As expected, the team at Mastro Fine Sports was pleased, "When you put together a $9 million auction, it's hard to complain," said a laughing Louis Bollman of Mastro Fine Sports. "It was a lot of fun to offer such a high number of quality items at one time, the bidding was strong, and everyone had a lot of fun participating."

Let's take a closer look at the sale. For the first time at auction, two very high-grade (PSA 8’s) E93 Standard Caramel cards were offered and both cards, a Honus Wagner and Napoleon Lajoie, brought great prices. Another key price was the PSA 8 T205 Ty Cobb. The T205 set is very hot right now and this was the first time, publicly, that a T205 Ty Cobb was offered in that grade. Look for major movement on both sets in the near future. As major condition rarities, both issues offer tremendous value.

Mastro will be holding another auction, strictly on the Internet, that features over 100 lots of PSA Mint 9's and Gem Mint 10's between January 31 and February 7, 2001. Market Report will be there for a full recap.

Memory Lane Makes a Splash with Inaugural Auction

It was a first for Memory Lane, Inc. but, after viewing the prices realized, they seemed like old veterans. The California based card company held a 50-lot PSA card auction with tremendous results, including a record breaking 1948 Leaf Ted Williams PSA Mint 9 that brought $49,002. That was just the beginning as the high-grade material did well across the board. Here's a peek at some of the highlights:

  

   Card  

 PSA Grade  

 Price Realized

1    1948 Leaf Ted Williams #76    9    $49,002
2    1956 Topps Yogi Berra #110    10    $17,114
3    1964 Topps Roger Maris #225    10    $8,405
4    1932 Caramel Bill Dickey #6    9    $7,671
5    1933 Goudey Sport Kings Bobby Jones #38    8    $11,793
6    1954 Topps Jackie Robinson #10    8    $1,153
7    1954 Topps Hank Aaron #128    8    $4,840
8    1954 Topps Billy Martin #13    8    $443
9    1954 Topps Phil Rizzuto #17    8    $1,025
10    1954 Topps Yogi Berra #50    8    $1,025
11    1954 Topps Moose Skowron #239    8    $523
12    1956 Topps Pee Wee Reese #260    9    $4,395
13    1958 Topps Yogi Berra #370    9    $2,489
14    1960 Topps Ernie Banks #560    9    $1,100
15    1960 Topps Roger Maris #565    9    $1,997
16    1965 Topps Tony Perez #581    9    $805
17    1968 Topps Ernie Banks #355    9    $519
18    1969 Topps Roberto Clemente #50    9    $1,771
19    1969 Topps Rod Carew #510    9    $418
20    1969 Topps Super Hank Aaron #34    9    $1,464

As you can see, there were a lot of very strong prices. Steve Hurst, partner at Memory Lane, Inc., wasn't surprised by the success, but he was very pleased. "Our auction was absolutely a success and we accomplished the goals we set out before it took place," explained Hurst. "Some of the prices were very strong, like the 1948 Leaf Williams, but we knew the interest was there for pieces like that because the quality was there too."

Even though the auction was less than colossal in size, Hurst has noticed a trend in the market that was confirmed by the auction. "The 1954 Topps set is very hot right now and all of our 1954 Topps lots received significant attention," said Hurst. "The set is filled with key rookies and stars and the design is considered a classic."

Lou Gehrig Contract Brings $49,301 at Lelands Latest Sale

Anytime you combine an authentic Lou Gehrig autograph with baseball content, you have a winner. When you feature a contract from Gehrig's Triple Crown Season of 1934, the bidding gets fierce. That's exactly what happened at the most recent auction put on by Lelands of New York. When the bidding stopped, that very contract set a Gehrig contract record with a final bid of $49,301. Most Gehrig contracts, which have been offered at public auction, usually sell between $20,000-$35,000, but this one flew past those numbers.

The total sale ended with $1.7 million in bids with approximately half of the lots featuring entertainment memorabilia. A couple of other notable sports related items were Babe Ruth's own signed spittoon ($5,397), Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig signed barnstorming photo ($20,372), Johnny Unitas last game-used Baltimore Colts jersey ($30,560), Roberto Clemente signed and game-used bat ($8,418) and a 1987-88 Edmonton 13" Stanley Cup trophy ($12,245).

A Small Christmas List from a Collector

Here are the top five things I want for Christmas in 2000.

1) I hope that baseball players do not go on strike a year from now, it would be bad for the game and the hobby.
2) I hope that the Minnesota Vikings win the Super Bowl so my dad doesn't throw our television out the window again.
3) I hope that Lennox Lewis ends up fighting Mike Tyson in 2001. After Lewis pounds Tyson's head in, maybe he will get the respect he deserves.
4) I hope that Oscar De La Hoya stops singing love songs and gets back in the ring where he belongs, a Felix Trinidad De La Hoya rematch would be interesting.
5) I hope that Shaquille O'Neal makes a sequel to Kazaam, it will give the media something else to make fun of besides Shaq's free throw shooting.

Santa, for the love of all things holy, please make my wishes come true.

Anonymous Collector

Earliest Known Photo of Babe Ruth sold fo $43,679
Earliest Known Photo of Babe Ruth sold fo $43,679
1950's Mickey Mantle Game-Used Bat w/UD Autograph brought $43,244
1950's Mickey Mantle Game-Used Bat w/UD Autograph brought $43,244

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.