Sunday, October 21, 2018

Recent Pick Ups

A couple of Rubes joined my collection recently.

I was very happy to have picked up these two W519-1-1s.  These are the black numbered versions of the W519s.  Type II's (W519-2) do not have numbers and are all blue backgrounds.  The W519-1-2s have blue numbers instead of black and are harder to find than the black number type I's. 

First up in Rube Benton who pitched for the NY Giants when this card was produced in 1920.

Next up in one of my favorite prewar players, HOFer Rube Marquard who was pitching for the Brooklyn Robins in 1920.
I hope you like these two new strip cards as much as I do.  The W519s don't show up as often as some of the other strip sets so I was happy to get these two.
Enjoy the hobby's a great one.

Thursday, October 11, 2018

Recent Pick Ups

I recently raised my Kraken number by two points with the addition of these two beauties.

Nothing crazy but I'm very excited to have finally picked up an E90-1 Rebel Oakes.  I've always considered this card one of the best looking cards in the hobby and a must have.  A true classic in my opinion.

I've always liked how Oakes' glove breaks the border at the top of the card.  Another tough card from the set, the Jerry Upp card, also has this characteristic.  Only on Jerry's card it's his butt that breaks the left border of the card.  Another classic card in my view as well.
The next one I picked up was this trimmed (at least I'm pretty sure it is as it's very short top to bottom and has a wavy bottom edge) Blankenship.  I like the solid blue background on this one. 
So what exactly is a Kraken number?  I can hear a bunch of you asking this question and feel I should explain.  The T206 set is affectionately known as "The Monster".  So in the caramel card world, the E90-1 set has been dubbed "The Kraken" by some collectors. 
A Kraken number is your score on a scale of points related to the level of difficulty of obtaining the different cards.  This is all explained, talked about, and collectors are reporting their scores in this thread on here.  Below is the list of the points for each card that total 250 for a complete set. 
20 Joe Jackson

10 Tris Speaker
10 Honus Wagner (throwing)

7 Hugh Duffy
7 Mike Mitchell
7 Honus Wagner (batting)
7 Cy Young (Cleveland)

5 Fred Clarke (Pittsburgh)
5 Ty Cobb
5 Willie Keeler (red background)
5 Jake Stahl
5 Bill Sweeney (Boston)
5 Ed Walsh

4 Peaches Graham
4 Christy Mathewson
4 Eddie Plank
4 Cy Young (Boston)

3 Bob Bescher
3 Patsy Dougherty
3 George Gibson (back)
3 Harry Howell (wind up)
3 Ed Karger
3 Willie Keeler (throwing)
3 Addie Joss (throwing)
3 Nap Lajoie
3 Tommy Leach (throwing)
3 Hans Lobert
3 Larry McLean
3 Dots Miller (sunset)
3 Orval Overall
3 Dave Shean
3 George Stone (left hand showing)
3 Jerry Upp

1 each for the rest of the 88 cards

A complete set of 121 would thus be 250 points
My Kraken number is only 12 (will be 14 when I get the two cards I won in the recent Brockelman Auction) but I'm having fun collecting the set and seeing my number (slowly) go up.
Feel free to post your Kraken number in the comments and on Net54 if you have any.  We need more people reporting in their numbers!
I hope you liked my recent pick ups as much as I do.
Enjoy the hobby's a great one!

Thursday, August 16, 2018

1971 Topps Long Shots

I was looking through my 1971 Topps Black Beauties recently and noticed a bunch of the images in this set are wide angle shots.

I really like these particular cards.  I'm drawn to the images showing multiple players in one picture, or just a shot of a player from a distance.  I found a couple cool pitchers for example where they were photographed from a distance and the cards are just plain awesome.

Now, I realize I picked two stars here, but what I really like about the cards are the images.  The Gibson shows the third baseman and third base ump in the background with the full stands behind them.  And the Ryan with that huge RC Cola ad behind him in the outfield. 
Here are three shots of the action at second base.  Each image has a baserunner sliding into the bag with the fielder making his play at first.  The Maxvill image is my favorite of the three as he is looking down at the runner who was trying to take him out of the play. 
These two are great.  They show some great in action photos involving the runner sliding into second, the defensive players in the middle of making the play and the ump right there to make the call.  These are so cool! 
And my absolute favorite card in the entire set is not the Thurman Munson as is a lot of folks favorite, but rather it's this World Series Game 5 card of Brooks Robinson making a signature play at short.
Is this the best image on a card in this set or what?  I mean how far away is the photographer for crying out loud?  And there is nothing else in the frame but dirt!  I mean Brooksie is in the middle of nowhere on this card. 
What other cards do you guys like from the 1971 Topps set?  Let me know in the comments.  And yes, these are all cards from my set and I could care less about the condition as you can tell.  I just collect cards, I don't care if they are beat up.
Enjoy the hobby's a great one.

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Recent Pick Ups

It's that time again to share my recent pick ups.

I recently picked up a couple more T205s for my set.  Nothing groundbreaking here, but still a couple steps closer to the finish line.

The first one is this Louis Evans with a Polar Bear back.  Even though the backs aren't as ornate as the T206 backs, I still like the Polar Bear backs in the T205 set.  And I like the bios and stats more than just a large ad for smokes. 
 One part of his bio that I really like is where it says, "He is a good waiter, and was granted 78 passes in 1910".  I've never heard of a batter being called a waiter in reference to getting walked.
The second T205 is that of J. Clyde Milan of the Washington Senators.  I like the designs of the American Leaguers in this set much more that the National Leaguers.  I think that because I first started collecting just the NY Giants from T205 I got bored of the National League design and now when I pick up an American Leaguer I am much more pleased. 
The back of Milan's card also states something I've never heard before in that "he also pilfered 44 bases" in regards to his stolen base tally.  I like that, pilfered. 
Anyway, those are my most recent acquisitions and I hope you enjoy them.
Enjoy the hobby's a great one.

Sunday, August 12, 2018

NY Giants From Long Ago...

A little look at John McGraw, Christy Mathewson and the NY Giants.

Ever wonder what the game was actually like during the prewar era?  Here's a little video clip of some of the NY Giants including John "Mugsy" McGraw and Christy Mathewson. 


I don't know about you, but I think it's pretty cool to see these guys in motion like this.  Too bad there wasn't sound so we could here the crack of the bat or the crowd in the background or the players talking. 

I hope you liked the video as much as I did!

Enjoy the hobby's a moving one. 

Saturday, August 11, 2018

Baseball Postage Stamps

There were some really nice looking baseball related postage stamps issued around the world pre-1950.

You might think the first baseball themed postage stamp would be issued by the United States, but it was actually issued in the Philippines in 1934.  There was a great article in Old Cardboard # 32 from the Spring of 2015 related to these stamps.

After reading that article, I decided to collect these stamps.  I used to collect stamps as a kid so I thought it would enjoy these stamps.  I was able to pick up all but one of the pre-1950 stamps.  The one I haven't gotten yet is the 1935 Colombia issue due to the fact that it is difficult to find as a single stamp and is usually found as part of a 16 stamp set that sells in the $1K range. 

Pictured below are the stamps I have so far.

These two are the 1934 Philippines and the 1938 Panama examples.

This is the 1937 Nicaragua complete set of four different colors.

This is the first US Postage stamp with a baseball theme.  It is from 1939 and was issued as a centennial of baseball stamp as it was believed to have invented in 1839. 
This is my favorite of the different stamps issued before 1950.  This is the 1944 Venezuelan complete set of 9 different colors. 
This block of four represent a set issued in Japan in 1948 and as you can see one of them includes a baseball scene.
Also issued in 1948, this stamp from Nicaragua shows a close play at the plate. 
There are many stamps from around the world issued after 1950 and I have quite a few of them as well.  I have these pre-1950 stamps all posted online on my online wantlist website.  You can check them out here.
I still need to scan and post most of the stamps from after 1950.  I have most of the classics shown already, but there are many more to see. 
Enjoy the hobby's an awesome one.

Tuesday, August 7, 2018

A Big Four on eBay

Well you don't see this all the time where one of the Big 4 shows up on eBay.

There is currently an Eddie Plank T206 listed on eBay that is in a PSA 1 holder.  Here is a link to the listing.

The seller, brigandicoinsandcollectibles, has it listed as a Buy It Now (BIN) for $59,500.00 or best offer.  One thing I really like about this listing is that the seller is offering free shipping. 

For some reason I'm always a little annoyed when someone is selling a high dollar card and they want an additional $10 shipping.

I understand both sides, the seller doesn't need to eat the cost of shipping and insurance, but I also just think that if a buyer is willing to shell out thousands of dollars for a card then the least the seller can do is cover the shipping. 

This PSA 1 card was sold in 2015 for $24,000 and the last PSA 1 sold for $36,500 in 2016.  I would imagine the asking price on this one this time is a little high but the seller is hoping for a reasonable offer to come in.

While T206 Planks are rare, they do show up for sale in auctions regularly, just in better condition that a PSA 1.  It is a very desirable card and this one will certainly sell.

My estimate is around $45,000 - $47,000 for an offer that would be accepted.  Is that low?  Maybe, but it's still a nice jump from the last sale of a 1 and that crease right through his face will hurt the final sale.

In any case, it's exciting to see an authentic Plank show up on eBay.  I consider (as do many) the Plank to be right behind the Wagner in the listing of the Big Four T206s.  I feel like the Magie error is three and the Doyle is four.  Even though the Doyle is the rarest and most difficult to find of all four, I think it's behind the other three when ranking these cards. 

People don't really know why the Plank is so difficult even to this day.  Some say the plate was broken early in the print run and was just never replaced so only so many of them were ever printed.  Others think it may be something similar to the Wagner theory that he didn't agree with his image being used to promote tobacco when children were collecting the cards.

Whatever the reason, he is a tough card to find.  So let's see where this one ends up folks.

Enjoy the hobby's a great one.

Monday, August 6, 2018

Some Nice Little Gems in Love of the Game Auctions

The current Love of the Game Auction has a lot of great items in it.

But there are a couple of lots that are really interesting to me.  I'm watching these items to see where they will end up and may bid on one of them as well.

The first really cool item I found is this T209 of B.E. Thompson.

This is a classic card from this set and actually doesn't feature a baseball player at all, but what some believe to be a farmer named Benjamin Thompson who supplied tobacco to Erwin-Nadal who then used his tobacco in the production of Contentnea Cigarettes.

Usually this card stands out simply due to the image of the "Uncle Sam" on the front, but this one is special for another reason altogether.

Most T209s exhibit an ad on the reverse for Contentnea Cigarettes in a very nice looking ad.  However this particular card has a slightly different back to it. 

While most all other backs feature the straight ad for the cigarettes, the back of this card says, "Be sure and save B.E. Thompson's picture.  Ask your dealer about it.  Contentnea Cigarettes." 

Some say this lends credence to the idea that this particular card could have been saved and redeemed for a prize.  What prize you ask?  Possibly the album that was produced for the set.  And in that album there was a full page dedicated to this card itself.

This is a rarely seen card and it being of the B.E. Thompson front it is highly desirable.  We'll see where this one ends up at the end of the auction.

I've always wanted an example of the Thompson and this would certainly be the one I would want.  Even in the poor condition it's in.

I've been picking up a few T205s recently and slowly working on that set, so the second item from Love of the Game that really caught my fancy was this blank backed Ed Reulbach with a handwritten bio on the reverse.  This card is just super cool. 

Maybe it's because I'm into T206s with back stamps, but whatever the reason I find this card fascinating. 

I am really drawn to prewar cards that have period writing or stamps on them and this one is just awesome.  First, the card is blank backed, which by itself if really cool.  But then to know that some kid 100 years ago scribbled out a bio for Reulbach takes it to the next level. 
It's not easy to read the bio at all, so I'm not going to try to translate it for you here.  You can enlarge the image and try to read it yourself.
Any way, this is another one that I'm watching closely and may bid on before too long. 
Take a look at the current auction at Love of the Game.  See if there is anything that you can't live without.  Like I said, they have a lot of cool stuff to look through.  I just picked out a couple of the non-featured items that caught my eye.  See what you can find.
Enjoy the hobby's a great one.

Sunday, August 5, 2018

Amazing Baseball Photos in Color

You have got to check out this Facebook page.

There is an amazing Facebook page where color photos of old time baseball are posted.  Here is the link to the page.

Here are some examples from his site. 

Yankees Lou Gehrig scores head first in 4th inning as Joe Harris' throw gets away from catcher Hank Severeid of Senators. Umpire is Dick Nallin. Yanks beat Senators 3-2. Aug 16 1925

I'm a little partial to Christy Mathewson so I picked this one...
Christy Mathewson, New York Giants, 1908

Walter Johnson and the Washington Senators, 1931
This shot outside of Shibe Park in Philly in 1914 is really cool.  I love seeing the crowds and vehicles from that period. 
Shibe Park, Philadelphia, 1914
Please check out this Facebook page a like it.

Enjoy the hobby's a colorful one.

Saturday, August 4, 2018

1955 Bowman Mantle Pulled From Pack at National

At a pack break of a 1955 Bowman pack at the National in Cleveland a Mickey Mantle was pulled.

This was a cool story on  A company called Vintage Breaks charged $500 for spots in a pack break of 1955 Bowmans.  The second to last card in that pack was the most valuable card in the set, the Mickey Mantle.  It was in superior condition and caused quite a stir among those watching. 

What are the chances really?  Well, the guy who won the card was 375 miles away at the time and when he checked online to see what happened he was floored.  He said he was going to sell the card as he already had a lower grade copy. 

He headed back to Cleveland to the show to claim the card and he brought it to PSA for grading.  After a few hours it came back as a PSA 9.  It is only the ninth time a 1955 Bowman Mantle was graded a 9 and the first time in over 20 years. 

According to the last PSA 9 Mantle sold for $35,089 and someone has already offered $50K for this one. 

This must have been one sweet experience for the winner of this card.  I'm sure he now enjoys the hobby.
Enjoy the hobby's a cool one.

Friday, August 3, 2018

1923 Lections

There is still mystery surrounding the 1923 Lections set.

The 1923 Lection set is a 10 card set that doesn't have a solid history behind it yet.  The cards have an image of a player inside an oval on the left of the card with their name and team written below the image.  The word Lections is written at the top of the right side of the card with a 1923 copyright for B&B Co. printed under that.

The rest of the card shows a baseball scene in either green or orange.  Below is a nice example of the Babe Ruth card.

Most examples of Lection cards are in poor condition for some reason.  And there are only estimated to be 40 - 50 examples known in the hobby today. 
Not much is known about this set or the distributor.  It is rumored that they were given to children around the same time that similar "election" cards were being distributed to adults for political candidates at the time.  The political cards looked similar but obviously weren't baseball themed. 
Another very interesting thing about these cards is that they are often found with holes punched in them like the example on the right.

Some thoughts about the holes are that they were punched when the cards were redeemed at local candy stores.  I'm not completely on board with this idea since some of the cards are completely covered with these holes.

I just don't see the cards being used over and over again at some local candy or ice cream store this many times.  Here is another Ruth example with a few more holes in it.

Maybe someday we will find a lot more about these cards and maybe find some solid proof about their distribution and why they were punched so much.  Below is a nice gallery of the then known examples from our friends at OldCardboard.
Enjoy the hobby's a mysterious one.

Tuesday, July 31, 2018

A Couple Sweet Strip Sets

Strip sets seem to get a bum rap in the hobby.

I understand why some of them are looked down on.  I mean look at the W9316 set for example.  They are just plain ugly.  But there are some strip sets that I am really drawn to.  Why do they call them strip cards to begin with?  Well, they were originally issued is strips of cards that were meant to be cut apart into individual cards.  Because of this many of them are torn apart terribly and the condition is horrible. 

Some kids back in the day would tear them apart instead of cut them.  High grade examples are rare because of this.  Even when they are cut really well, the TPGs will label them as Hand Cut with or without a numerical grade.  Since they are all hand cut from strips I have no problem with them grading Authentic without a number.

Let's start with the W519-1-1 numbered set.  Here is a nice group picture of the set courtesy

I really like the various portraits and player selection.  It's not full of the same old players that are in every other set.  There are only two cards that aren't portraits.  And I'm really drawn to all the different colored backgrounds.
The next set I really like is the W520 set.  Again, here is an image of the set courtesy
What I really like about this set is the mix of portraits and action  shots.  The colorful backgrounds look awesome when they are all together as well.  There are actually two examples of Zach Wheat in this set for some reason.  One portrait pose and one action shot.  There is a really nice Babe Ruth card in this set showing the Bambino throwing.
Another interesting thing about the W520 set is that it is exactly the same as the W522 set but numbered differently.  W520 is numbered 1 - 20 while the W522 is numbered 31 - 50.  In my experience the W522s seem to show up for sale more often as well. 
So don't disregard all strip sets equally when you think about them.  Some of these sets are really nice, small sets that have several HOFers.  I mean both of these two have Babe Ruth in them. 
What do you guys think about strip sets?  Not just these ones, but any strips in general.
Enjoy the hobby's a sweet one.

Saturday, July 28, 2018

Cards You Should See

Here are some cards I thought you should see if you haven't already seen them.

First up in the 1887 Four Base Hits Mike "King" Kelly.  This is a sweet card that I believe there are only two known examples. 

The cards in this set are 2-1/4 x 3-7/8 and there are 14 known cards in the set.  This is my favorite pose from this set (which is why I'm sharing it with you).
The next card I want to share is another Mike Kelly.  His nickname was $10,000 Kelly and one this N172 Old Judge card he is actually noted as such,  The clarity on this card is amazing and the grade of SGC96 reflects this.
I'm not sure about the price tag on it, but it's certainly worth a pretty penny.  You just don't see Old Judges with this much clarity all that often so this is a real treat.
Here is a third sweet card to see.  This is just a really nice high grade example of a 1915 Cracker Jack Walter Johnson.  Of course it is more likely to see a 1915 in high grade like this than a 1914 since they could be ordered without being packaged in the candy.  This kept them from getting the caramel stains typical on the 1914 cards.
I just wanted to share these cards with you since I find them so awesome.  I hope you liked them too.
Enjoy the hobby's a great one.

Saturday, July 21, 2018

Worst Call In History

A couple umps were asleep during this play...

I know, I know, I've been on a video clip trip lately, but I just figured out how to embed a video and I'm loving it.

Anyways, back to the post at hand.  Check out this missed call by these two, yes two, umps in a Mexican League game.

The batter clearly swings fully through at the pitch and the catcher notices that the ump doesn't call a strike and he asks him about it.  The ump behind the plate then confers with the first base ump to see if the batter actually swung or not. 

Then the first base ump actually calls the batter safe and claims he didn't swing! 

How can both umps completely miss this call?  The batter completely swung through the pitch.  What do you guys think?  Have you seen a call worse than this before?  Let me know.

Friday, July 20, 2018

Mickey Mantle Races Roger Maris

Here's some fun story time with Mickey Mantle.

I saw this video posted on Net54 and thought I would share it with you as well.  This is a funny story about Mickey Mantle racing Roger Maris in a swimming contest. 

Even though this isn't about prewar baseball cards and the Mick isn't a prewar star, it's Mickey friggin' Mantle talking on camera!  I am just fascinated listening to him tell a story. 

Enjoy the hobby's a super one.

Thursday, July 19, 2018

Recent Pick Up

Recently picked up some new cards and wanted to share them with you.

I picked up another couple E90-1s and another T205.  I only have a scan of one of the E90-1s right now so you'll have to wait to see the other one, but here is the one of which I do have a scan.

There are two Tannehills in the set, Lee and Jesse.  This is Lee's card.  The very first caramel card I ever bought was this card many years ago but I sold it a while back.  So I'm very pleased to have this one to replace it (even with the 3 written on it).
The next card I picked up is a T205 Danny Hoffman example.  This is a particular new favorite of mine as it is the Yellow Second Base variation.

The Hoffman T205 card actually has up to four variations depending on how you define a variation.  You can read about all the "errors" in the T205 set on  There are 23 discussed there.

The four different Hoffmans are as follows:
  1. Yellow Second Base (no stripe)
  2. Yellow Second Base (with stripe)
  3. White Second Base (detailed face)
  4. White Second Base (face lacks detail)
The stripe refers to a wide lighter green diagonal stripe behind Danny's head.  You can see all four examples posted on Net54 by clicking here.  Eventually I'll try to pick up the others as well, but this one is a favorite right now.

If you have any of the ones I don't have yet and would consider selling it, please let me know.

Enjoy the hobby's a great one.

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

PM8 Our National Game Pins

PM8 Our National Game pins many times come attached to a paper backing.

I was perusing an old auction catalog today as I often do and came across a lot containing a group of PM8 pins.  It reminded me of some thoughts I've had in the past about these pins.  What are the paper backings that are very often found with these pins?

I've noticed something over the years.  These backings are rarely found in anything but NM
condition.  So rarely in fact, that I would never buy one with a damaged backing.  Even a slight crease would keep me away since it seems to be so easy to find them in such good condition.

These pins were distributed 80 years ago in 1938.  The pins themselves are rarely found in NM condition.  At least I am used to seeing them with damage including dents and scratches.  Many times they are so badly damaged that you can barely read the player's name.

So how is it that the pin can be so badly damaged but the backing is so darn perfect?

It's my belief that these backings were all made far later than 1938 and that they were not issued with the actual pins.  How hard would it be to print up a ton of these paper backings? 

Do the pins sell for a premium with the backing?  I'm not sure to be honest.  If they do I think the premium is minimal if anything.

They aren't matched up to any particular pin so it's not like you need the Dizzy Dean backing to go with the pin.  The backings are completely anonymous so you can interchange them with any pin.  All they say on them is, "Our National Game A Baseball Hero". 

They aren't large pins measuring only 7/8" in diameter with a tab at the top.  The tab slides through a slit in the backing and that is how they are held together. 

So what do you guys think?  Am I crazy here thinking these aren't original to the distribution period?  Are collectors already all over this idea and that's why the pins with backings don't sell for much of a premium?

Let me know your thoughts in the comments.  I'm interested to know if I'm onto something or if this is old news and I'm behind the times.

Enjoy the hobby's a cool one.

Sunday, July 15, 2018

Hunt Auctions at FanFest

I saw a cool video of David Hunt of Hunt Auctions talking about some of the items in the Auction at FanFest.

This was a cool short video of David Hunt being interviewed by Rick Klein of ABC News at the All Star FanFest.  He is talking about a few of the items in the auction and showing them off from the display cases they are in. 

They talk about Walter Johnson items including some nice photographs.  And they also show a large collection of original photos that were used for the artwork in the T205 set.  It was very cool seeing some of those images. 

They also talked about some Mel Ott items that were consigned by the Ott family.  One interesting note was the photo of Mel accepting a War Bond Popularity Contest certificate with a cow behind him.  David had no idea why the cow was there.  If you do know, please share it with me in the comments.  I'd love to know why the cow was there.

Enjoy the hobby's a cool one.

Saturday, July 14, 2018

T206 PSA 10

There are some very high grade T206s coming to auction soon.

Heritage Auctions will be featuring several high grade T206s in their upcoming auction.  There are a lot of PSA 8s and 9s including names like Cobb, Mathewson, Young, Johnson and even a Magie error card.  But I wanted to bring attention to the ultimate graded T206s here.  That's right, there are going to be five PSA 10 Gem Mint examples.  These include the following cards:
  1. McGraw (finger in air)
  2. Chase (white cap)
  3. Liebhardt
  4. Oldring (fielding)
  5. Bates
I've posted images of three of these (Heritage hasn't posted images of Liebhardt or Oldring yet) here.  You can view many of the other examples of 8s and 9s using this link

I have to say, I can't tell the difference between many of these 9s vs. 10s.  And I would think the centering would have to be perfect in order to get a 10 grade, but this is not always the case as you can see.  They are close to perfect, but even I can see they aren't exactly centered in some cases.  You be the judge.

I hadn't seen a PSA 10 T206 before this, so I wanted to share these with you all in case you hadn't seen them either.

Image Courtesy Heritage Auctions

Image Courtesy Heritage Auctions
Image Courtesy Heritage Auctions
Enjoy the hobby's a great one.

Saturday, June 30, 2018

T205 Stanage Miscut

There was recently a very cool miscut T205 on eBay.

For several years there has been interest in T206 oddities like miscuts, scraps, double names, etc. 

The phenomenon hasn't been as big of a deal with T205s for some reason.  At least I haven't seen as many instances of oddities with the T205 set. 

But recently on eBay there was a very miscut example of a T205 Oscar Stanage.  This card was miscut top to bottom with the entire ad on the reverse cut off the bottom and printed on the top of the card.  The front, of course, was just as miscut as the back. 

This is a very cool mistake that I would love to own myself, however the ending price was a bit out of my range.  This particular card ended at $1,136.11.  Is this a strong price for this card?  I don't know as there aren't a whole lot of T205 oddities to compare it to. 

I do know that there was a miscut T206 Knight with a similar miscut that sold in a 2015 Robert Edward Auctions auction and closed for $4,500.  This is a comparable common miscut card from the T206 set, although the Knight was a little better condition.

But this goes to show that the T206 oddities command a bigger premium than the T205 oddities.  That shouldn't be much of a surprise to you though.  The T206 set is much more widely collected and popular.

You can search T206 miscuts and find several other examples as well.  There is even a nice Cy Young example out there.  That one sold for $10,400 back in 2014. 

Enjoy the hobby's a cool one.

Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Recent Pick Up

My latest pick up...

Here is my latest pick up folks.  It's a pretty cool card from the M116 set.  This one fits in the "Pedigree" category.  This is my third Lionel Carter card and I really like it.  It's an M116 Sporting Life Nig Clarke card graded SGC 3 VG. 

This is my only card from this set so it's a type card for me.  I don't plan on working on the set at all either so it'll stay a type card.  Not a bad addition I would say.

Enjoy the hobby's a sweet one.

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Big Changes at SGC

Sportscard Guarantee, LLC (SGC) has announced several changes and enhancements to their services.

I know I'm not the first person to report this, but SGC has some changes coming up.  As was reported on one of the changes is that they will abandon their 100 point scale for grading cards and begin using a 10 point scale. 

Collectors will also be able to track their submissions throughout the process and know where their cards are at all times. 

One of my favorite changes is the fact that SGC will begin scanning each card after it is slabbed and before it is shipped.  Collectors will be able to view their cards online allowing them to also verify that a card that is being sold is the same card that was in the slab when it was graded and hasn't been switched out. 

Another new option for submissions is the "Grader Notes Option" where customers can see the notes that the graders make when they are evaluating their card and get a better idea of why they received the grade they did.

Check out the article at Sportscollectorsdaily for more info.

Enjoy the hobby's a grade one. 

See what I did there?  A grade one.  Like a great one.  Ha!

Sunday, June 17, 2018

T206 - The Basics

There is a lot one can learn about the great T206 White Border set, but here are some of the basics you should know.

The T206 White Border set, affectionately known as "The Monster", has been studied by many hobby scholars over the years and much has been learned about the set.  Even today new theories are being put forth regarding how the set was printed, why some cards are more difficult than others, etc.  But here we will just be taking a look at the basics of the set.  It's such a complex beast that it can be overwhelming and confusing if you just jump in and try to digest it all at once.  So let's begin...

The set was produced by The American Tobacco Company (ATC) during the period 1909 through 1911 to be inserted into various brands of tobacco products as a premium to be collected by consumers.  The cards began to be very popular with children and it was common for kids to ask smokers for their "baseball men" when they bought a pack of smokes.   

The cards were printed by The American Lithograph Company (ALC) in New York and were then sent to one of six factories to be inserted into the product for distribution.  Printed on the backs of the cards was an ad for whichever brand of tobacco the cards were packed with.  There were 15 different  brands of tobacco advertised on the backs. 

Backs examples
These 15 brands in alphabetical order are American Beauty, Broad Leaf, Carolina Brights, Cycle, Drum, El Principe de Gales, Hindu, Lenox, Old Mill, Piedmont, Polar Bear, Sovereign, Sweet Caporal, Tolstoi and Uzit.  A large number of collectors also consider the Ty Cobb back to be part of the T206 set as well, but these 15 brands are the unquestionable brands in the set.  The Ty Cobb "King of the Smoking Tobacco World" back is only found with the Ty Cobb red background portrait front and is extremely rare.  For this reason, I will consider it a separately issued card that is not part of the set.
Ty Cobb Back
Some collectors also entertain the idea that the Type I Coupon cards are part of the T206 set as well.  While it is true that these share a very similar ad design on the backs, I believe the Coupon sets are distinct separate sets as well.  Below is a Type I Coupon back with four T206 backs that all share the same design. 
Back Comparison
The backs all identify what factory the cards were distributed from at the bottom and, as was mentioned earlier, there are six different factories.  Some backs were distributed from several different factories and some were distributed from just a single factory.  Another designation on the backs of some of the cards is the series in which the card was issued.  For example, some backs state 150 Subjects, 350 Subjects, 350-460 Subjects or 460 Subjects.  These help identify when the cards were printed between the three years of distribution.
When you consider all the backs possible with different ads, different factories and different subjects you end up with 36 different backs.  This does not include the Ty Cobb back, Coupon back, blank back or brown Old Mill back.  The blank and brown Old Mill backs are considered scraps or not actually issued with the tobacco. 
There are 524 different fronts in the Monster set.  But when you take into account all the front/back combinations there are over 6,000 unique card possibilities. 
Within those 524 different fronts there are many tougher cards than others and some outright rare cards.  There are four cards you should definitely know in the set.  These are called "The Big Four" and they are Wagner (Pittsburgh), Plank, Magie (error) and Joe Doyle N.Y. Nat'l. 
The Big Four
 Then there are the next two cards that make it the big six: Demmitt (St. Louis) and O'Hara (St. Louis).  One thing you should know about these two cards is that they are only found with the Polar Bear back.  There are multiples of several players with Ty Cobb having four examples alone.
Ty Cobbs
 Hal Chase has the most unique cards with five examples.  But many players have two or three.  There are 76 Hall of Famer cards in the set as well.  And there is a subset of players from the Southern Leagues that includes 48 different cards.  These are all a little tougher to find than the other common cards in the set.  One of my favorite subsets is the horizontal subset.  There are six horizontal cards in the set and they seem to carry a slight premium as many collectors focus on them.
 There are many different ways to collect T206s; trying to get each of the 524 fronts (although many consider the set complete at 520 and do not include the rare Big Four), team collections and player collections, front/back combos, back runs of a particular front, etc.  Below is an impressive back run of a Fred Merkle front.  Click to enlarge the image.
Merkle Back Run
Another popular way to collect cards from the set are to collect what are called "Freaks".  They can be anything from a miscut card that shows part of another card, a name caption on the top as well as on the bottom, overprints, missing colors, missing names, proofs, etc.  Here are some cool examples of T206 Freaks...
There is no wrong way to collect them.  So go ahead and jump right in and start picking some up.  But be careful as you may get hooked on these cards.
As I said, these are just some of the basics of the set.  There is much more to learn about T206 but this should give you a good start.
Enjoy the hobby's a Monster!