It was touted as “The Event” within and it certainly was eventful! The question of “will they or won’t they” was answered as Mile High Card Company’s October Auction delivered a world-record price of $1,353,625 for the T206 Honus Wagner PSA 2, surpassing a $1.2M sale set earlier this year. Two other recently discovered items blew past the $100,000 barrier to amazing results with a 1916 M101-5 Holmes to Homes Babe Ruth rookie card, the only known example, bringing in $162,850 and a 1933 Sport Kings Gum #2 Babe Ruth Autographed PSA/DNA MINT 9 fetching $148,973. “People have been asking if I was concerned that the auction wouldn’t live up to the hype and I repeatedly told them no because we have the best collector base in the business. The magnitude of this auction was well within their reach. Golden opportunities like this don’t come often and “The Event” exceeded our high expectations. We owe it all to them” said MHCC President and CEO Brian Drent.
In addition to the strong bidding on the Holmes to Homes Babe Ruth card, several other cards from the find performed admirably with the 1916 M101-5 Holmes to Homes Honus Wagner selling for $19,728 and the Walter Johnson netting $17,021. Items that would normally have been headliners in most auctions were on the undercard in “The Event” but still brought in solid prices with a 1909-11 T206 Sweet Caporal Eddie Plank PSA 4 VG/EX closing at $92,880, 1933 Goudey #106 Napoleon Lajoie PSA 4.5 selling for $45,170, 1950-51 Toleteros Joshua Gibson PSA 4 VG-EX fetching $21,221, and a 1952 Topps #311 Mickey Mantle PSA 4 VG-EX bringing in $32,926. Other key cards included a 1909-11 T206 Sweet Caporal 350/30 Eddie Plank SGC 40 VG 3 that sold for $79,691, 1909-11 T206 Piedmont 150/25 Sherry Magie (Magee) Error PSA 2 GOOD that closed at $15,437, 1952 Topps #311 Mickey Mantle BVG 3.5 VG+ delivering $18,789, 1958 Topps #150 Mickey Mantle PSA 9 MINT that sold for $27,317, 1961 Topps #300 Mickey Mantle PSA 9 MINT taking in $10,582, 1963 Topps #200 Mickey Mantle PSA 9 MINT that went for $18,737, 1964 Topps #50 Mickey Mantle PSA 9 MINT that closed at $13,446, 1965 Topps #350 Mickey Mantle PSA 9 MINT that sold for $10,582, 1966 Topps #50 Mickey Mantle PSA 9 MINT taking down $8,467, 1967 Topps #150 Mickey Mantle PSA 9 MINT earning $8,456, 1968 Topps #280 Mickey Mantle PSA 9 MINT netting $3,497, 1969 Topps #500 Mickey Mantle PSA 9 MINT that closed strongly at $8,456, 1969 Topps #500 Mickey Mantle White Letters SGC 8.5 NM/MT+ that netted $16,228, 1948 Leaf #98 Hal Newhouser PSA 7 NM that experienced a bidder battle to the tune of $6,418, and a 1990 Topps #414 Frank Thomas No Name on Front PSA 9 MINT that brought in $15,589. Notable items taking in world-record prices were a 1912 T-202 Hassan Triple Folder Fast Work At Third Charles O’Leary/Ty Cobb PSA 8 NM-MT that sold for $17,165, a 25% jump over the previous high sale, and a 1967 Topps Wacky Packs Moron Salt Die-Cut PSA 9 MINT that landed at $5,747, almost double the previous record for any example in the entire series graded PSA 9.
For advanced Mickey Mantle collectors, the buzz was all about the Robert Mallon collection. Mallon was Mantle’s roommate when they both began their professional baseball careers with the 1949 Class D Independence Yankees, and offered up was a fresh-to-the-hobby 1949 Mickey Mantle Signed and Dated Baseball – The Earliest Known (Dated) Single Signed Example Of A Ball As A Professional PSA/DNA and JSA, that received very heavy bidding before closing at $34,573, 1949 “Mick” Mantle Signed Official K.O.M. League Baseball PSA/DNA that also earned strong action to close at $21,400 , and a 1949 Independence Yankees Team-Signed Official K.O.M. League Baseball Featuring “Mick” Mantle that sold for $11,641. But the Mantle signed balls weren’t the only exclusive items dedicated to Yankees legends as a Spectacular 1933 V353 World Wide Gum (Canadian Goudey) Uncut Sheet Featuring (3) Babe Ruth Cards and Lou Gehrig closed at $54,468, a one of a kind 1934 R310 Butterfinger Babe Ruth Autographed PSA/DNA Auto GEM MINT 10 saw action halt at $12,240, and a Babe Ruth Signed Newspaper Photo PSA/DNA AUTO GRADE GEM MINT 10 that sold for $8,192. Other truly incredible pieces of memorabilia included a Rookie Era 1980-85 Magic Johnson Los Angeles Lakers Game-Used and Autographed Road Jersey MEARS A10 that closed at $12,806 behind spirited bidding, 1989-90 Michael Jordan Chicago Bulls Game-Used and Signed Road Jersey that netted $7,696, and 1960 Johnny Unitas Baltimore Colts Game-Worn Black High-Top Cleats with LOA from Art Donovan that sold for $5,255.
“The Event” offered an impressive selection of sets with a trio of assemblages that were offered complete as well as individual lots. The 1909-11 T206 Complete Set Completely PSA Graded #9 on PSA Set Registry went to a single bidder, snagging the entire collection with an aggressive bid of $167,348. The ultra-rare 1980 Topps Pepsi-Cola Complete Set All SGC Graded was broken up and sold cumulatively for $50,399, led by #5 Reggie Jackson SGC 9 MINT at $8,801, #14 Mike Schmidt SGC 7.5 NM+ at $5,461, #3 George Brett SGC 9.5 MINT+ at $4,233 and #20 Steve Carlton SGC 9 MINT at $3,388. The 1955 Topps All-American Near-Complete Set (94/100) Completely PSA Graded with 8.60 GPA was also broken up, totaling $48,549, led by #36 Turk Edwards PSA 10 GEM MINT at $3,024, #91 Bob Odell PSA 9 MINT at $2,434, and #67 Frankie Albert PSA 9 MINT at $2,288. Other key collections included a 1957 Topps Baseball Complete Set Completely PSA Graded with Every Card Graded PSA 7 NM that sold for $13,350, 1965 Topps Baseball Complete Set All PSA Graded with 8.221 GPA that brought in $24,776, 1975 Topps Complete Set Completely PSA Graded #17 Finest on PSA Set Registry that sold for $14,337, and 1991 Topps Desert Shield Complete Set #3 on PSA Set Registry with 9.78 Set Rating that closed at $28,683.
As always, we’d like to thank everyone who participated and enjoyed the action of “The Event” as much as we did. As memorable as this auction will be, Mile High Card Company is already hard at work to make the next auction even better. MHCC is currently accepting consignments for the December Elite Auction, so if you desire the maximum possible return for your prized sports cards and memorabilia, please call our office at (303) 840-2784 to speak with one of MHCC’s experts, or visit our website at www.milehighcardco.com.