This can’t miss 500+ lot sale includes items from Mickey Mantle, Lou Gehrig, Roberto Clemente, Rocky Marciano, and Babe Ruth, among many other sports legends.
Morphy Auctions, the finest auction destination for fresh to the market collections, is excited to announce this debut, full-day exclusively sports memorabilia auction to be held October 28, 2017, starting promptly at 10am. This sale launches the company’s Sports Memorabilia Division which is headed by Tommy Sage, Jr. and includes trusted industry expert Kevin Bronson, Morphy’s Sports Memorabilia Consultant. Tommy, who has been with Morphy’s since 2004, is well known in the industry for his expertise in toys, trains, and sports memorabilia, and has been collecting sports memorabilia for almost four decades. Kevin has 25 years of experience handling and appraising a full spectrum of important athletic related materials and ephemera. All lot from this top-tier sale are available for preview now in Morphy’s Denver auction gallery.
It’s in the cards that this premier sale will feature many of the world’s rarest and most desirable sports cards. Remarkable collections take the pole position in this category. This sale’s top offering is lot #442, a collection of 520 total T206 baseball cards minus the big 4 estimated at $60,000-80,000. A close second is lot #443, a nearly complete collection of 460 total T206 baseball cards, estimated at $40,000-60,000. The T206 was issued in 1909-1911 through the American Tobacco Company. It is considered the “holy grail” of among many collectors. According to Morphy’s experts, “We all see T206 groups and singles available for sale but opportunities to purchase nice complete sets are rare indeed!” Also of World Series caliber is lot #44, a near complete collection of 219 total T205 master baseball cards, estimated at $20,000-30,000. With the huge success of the T206 baseball card set, the American Tobacco Company came back with 221 cards with stunning lithography and gold gilt borders. These little masterpieces were the first to offer stats, facsimile autographs, and player information on the reverse. This particular set was assembled and upgraded over a decade and is fresh to the market.
Now it’s time to look at some single card highlights. First things first, let’s start with two amazing rookie cards. The first is lot #455, a 1952 Topps #311 Mickey Mantle rookie card. Considered the most important post war baseball card produced, this example has wonderful registration and color, near perfect centering, extraordinary appeal, and is estimated at $30,000-40,000. And the second is lot #453, a 1951 Bowman #305 Willie Mays rookie card. This example, estimated at $3,000-5,000, is extremely well centered and has excellent color.
Two Babe Ruth cards are also the great bambino in this category. The first, lot #448, is a 1931 W517 Babe Ruth throwing card, estimated at $6,000-9,000. This recently PSA 9 graded career card is so nice, it’s hard to believe it didn’t merit a 10. And the second, lot #509, is a 1929-30 Rogers Peet #48 Babe Ruth PSA 7 NRMT highest graded card, estimated at $4,000-6,000. According to our experts, “This is from a small recent discovery of 13 cards found in their original glassine envelopes. I would expect that another example won't be available anytime soon.” Also hard to top in this category is lot #465, a 1956 Topps Carl Erskine. This perfect-in-every-way card is estimated at $4,000-8,000 and has bright color, four razor-sharp corners, and is centered 50/50 all the way around.
Next under consideration is this sale’s Olympic-caliber selection of sports memorabilia. Fine game used jerseys are well represented in this award winning category. Lot #179, a 1960 Yogi Berra Yankees flannel road jersey, is estimated at $20,000-30,000. This shirt was obtained by General Manager Jerry Toman who was in charge of the uniforms sent directly from the Yankees. This extraordinary rarity includes a 1992 Letter of Opinion from Dick Dobbins stating "the owner should feel confident that this is an authentic Yankee jersey undoubtedly used by Yogi Berra,” a letter from Jerry Toman, and a copy of original catalog listing from its sale in 1993 as part of the Binghamton collection at Lelands. And two basketball game worn jerseys merit full court press. Lot #176, a 1969-1970 Charles Williams Pittsburgh Pipers ABA jersey, is exceedingly rare with only a few examples existing. Lot #330, a 2003-2004 Lebron James rookie game Cleveland Cavaliers Jersey Each of these jerseys is estimated at $6,000-9,000.
This sale’s heavy metal selections of football and baseball championship rings are pure gold. Leading the pigskin pack is lot #314, a 1975 Super Bowl X Pittsburgh Steelers World Championship ring presented to quarterback Joe Gilliam, the first African America man to hold that position for the team. This ring is size 11 and is made from 37 grams of 10k gold. It shows expected wear from use but is in excellent condition overall and is estimated at $40,000-50,000. And it’s also a touchdown with lot #322, a 1999 Super Bowl XXXIV St Louis Rams World Championship ring, estimated at $20,000-25,000. This elaborately decorated bling, which comes in its original presentation box, is size 11 and is made from 64.8 grams of 10K gold.
Also on offer is a grand-slam selection of championship baseball rings. Lot #304, a 1960 Pittsburgh Pirates World Series championship ring, issued to the Pittsburgh Press Sports writer and one time Baseball Writers Association President Les Biederman, is estimated at $12,000-16,000. This ring is size 10-1/2 and made from 29 grams of 14K. It has light wear but is in overall to near mint condition. Lot #311, a 1989 Oakland A's World Championship Ring Battle of the Bay/Earthquake Series is estimated at $6,000-9,000. It is size 10, made from 36.6 grams of 10K gold, and is in excellent condition with light wear expected from use. This mover and shaker comes with its original Jostens box as well as a program, a video, and a ticket from game 3 of this World Series event. And lot #312, a 2001 Arizona Diamondbacks World Series ring from a team staff member, is estimated at $6,000-9,000. The size 12 ring, which comes in its original presentation box, was produced by Masters of Design and is made from 54.2 grams of 10K gold.
This professional grade sale rounds out with comprehensive selections of sports-related autographs, equipment, cards, ephemera, medals and trophies, and other items from the most collectible categories. Lot #165, 1982 Willie Stargell Game glove with provenance - one of the finest if not the finest documented Stargell gloves to ever come to market - is estimated at $15,000-20,000. Lot #266, an 1888 J. & E. Stevens cast iron Darktown battery mechanical bank, with exceptional crossover appeal between Black Americana, baseball, and mechanical bank collectibles, is estimated at $1,500-2,500. And lot #228, a c. 19th century folk art painting representing an 1870’s baseball game scene, just may bring an October surprise with its $10,000-15,000 estimate.
According to Tommy Sage, Jr., Department Head of Morphy Auctions’ Sports Memorabilia Division, “The catalog is out and it looks great, and we’re very happy with it. Kevin Bronson has done a wonderful job bringing in consignments, cataloging, and promoting the sale. We both highly anticipate a good auction and we are already working on our next sale, to be held in spring, 2018. We are accepting consignments now but are already about half full for that event.”
Auction highlights Include:
|Lot||Item||Low Estimate||High Estimate|
|165||1982 Willie Stargell Game Used First Baseman's Glove||$15,000||$20,000|
|176||1969-70 Charles Williams Pittsburgh Pipers ABA Game Worn Jersey||$6,000||$9,000|
|179||1960 Yogi Berra Game Used Yankees Road Jersey||$20,000||$30,000|
|228||Baseball Canvas Painting||$10,000||$15,000|
|266||J. & E. Stevens Cast Iron Darktown Battery Mechanical Bank||$1,500||$2,500|
|304||1960 Pittsburgh Pirates World Series Championship Ring||$12,000||$16,000|
|311||1989 Oakland A's World Championship Ring||$6,000||$9,000|
|312||2001 Arizona Diamondbacks World Series Ring||$6,000||$9,000|
|314||1975 Super Bowl X Pittsburgh Steelers Ring Presented to Joe Gilliam||$40,000||$50,000|
|322||1999 Super Bowl XXXIV St. Louis Rams Ring||$20,000||$25,000|
|330||2003-04 Lebron James Rookie Game Used Cleveland Cavaliers Jersey||$6,000||$9,000|
|442||Lot of 520: American Tobacco Co. T206 Baseball Card Set Minus the Big 4||$60,000||$80,000|
|443||Lot of 460: 1909-1911 T206 Baseball Near Set||$40,000||$60,000|
|444||Lot of 219: American Tobacco Co. T205 Master Baseball Card Near Complete Set||$20,000||$30,000|
|448||1931 W517 Babe Ruth Throwing Card PSA 9 Mint Highest Graded||$6,000||$9,000|
|453||1951 Bowman Willie Mays #305 Baseball Card||$3,000||$5,000|
|455||1952 Topps #311 Mickey Mantle Rookie Card||$30,000||$40,000|
|465||1956 Topps Carl Erskine||$4,000||$8,000|
|509||1929-30 Rogers Peet #48 Babe Ruth PSA 7 NRMT Highest Graded.||$4,000||$6,000|
About Morphy Auctions:
Morphy Auctions, the finest auction destination for fresh to the market collectibles, is headquartered in Denver, PA. The company also has a satellite office in Las Vegas, NV. A full-service auction house, Morphy’s presents over 35 premier auctions annually. The company’s three-part mission includes ensuring consignor satisfaction with every auction, offering world-class customer service that goes above and beyond the call of duty, and providing relentless buyer support to create confidence for all clients seeking a trustworthy purchasing experience.
Morphy’s team of specialists includes the nation's finest and most recognized experts in popular collecting categories including advertising; firearms; fine automobiles, automobilia and petroliana; coin-operated machines; antiques, fine, and decorative art; dolls, bears, toys, and trains; cast iron; coins; marbles; jewelry and wrist watches. Morphy Auctions is owned by President and Founder Dan Morphy, himself a lifelong and passionate collector of antiques, banks, and numerous other categories. Morphy's has been in business since 2004 and has grown from two to over 65 employees in over a decade. Morphy Auctions is located at 2000 North Reading Road, Denver, PA 17517. We can be reached by phone at 877-968-8880, by fax at 717-336-7115, and by email at [email protected]. Our auction gallery is open seven days a week: Monday through Friday from 9am to 4pm and Saturday and Sunday from 9am to 1pm. For more information on Morphy's, please visit www.MorphyAuctions.com.