(Newport Beach, CA) -- A "common" baseball card in spectacularly uncommon condition was registered as the nine millionth card graded by Professional Sports Authenticator (PSA). A 1954 Topps rookie card of Detroit Tigers infielder, Reno Bertoia, graded GEM-MT 10, is now encapsulated with the historic serial number 09000000 printed on the holder's insert.
The card was submitted by Rick Hoskinson, a collector from Northwest Montana, and is the first 1954 Topps Bertoia card (#131) to ever receive a grade of PSA 10. When informed about the precedent-setting grade for his card, Hoskinson's first response was, "Wow!"
Joe Orlando, President of PSA, a division of Collectors Universe, Inc. (NASDAQ: CLCT), stated: "Bertoia may not have been a standout player during his major league career, but this card certainly is. This card is symbolic of the renewed interest in set collecting across the hobby. The PSA Set RegistrySM program now has well over 17,000 registered sets and it continues to grow."
Hoskinson, a member of the PSA Collectors Club since 2004, says the Bertoia card was part of a stack of about 100 vintage cards he purchased several years ago that originated from an estate. His son-in-law encouraged him to submit some of the cards for grading.
"Everyone I talked to pointed to PSA as THE grading authority," said Hoskinson.
In lesser grades, the Bertoia card usually has a retail value of several dollars, but in PSA Gem Mint 10 condition this card could potentially command a few thousand dollars, explained Orlando, who also serves as Editor of Sports Market Report magazine.
"The 1954 Topps set is a popular, classic baseball card set composed of 250 colorful cards. In the nearly 15-year history of PSA we've authenticated and graded nearly 55,000 1954 Topps cards, and only 23 of them, including this newly-graded Bertoia card, have ever been designated as PSA 10."
A dozen1954 Topps Bertoia cards are listed as PSA 9 in the PSA Population Report, and this card designated as number nine million is the first of its kind to be graded PSA 10.
The nine-million milestone occurred just nine months after PSA registered its eight millionth card in March.
For additional information about PSA, PSA/DNA or the PSA Set RegistrySM program, contact PSA, P.O. Box 6180, Newport Beach, CA 92658. Phone: (800) 325-1121. E-mail: [email protected]. Web: www.psacard.com.