Ruth rookie headlines Mile High’s recording-settin

2.jpgMile High Card Company’s December auction grossed $2,062,745, which represents a company record.

The MHCC sale featured such items of note as an 1887 N690-1 Kalamazoo Bats Pittsburg Team Cabinet, which realized an astounding $62,299, and a 1915 Sporting News Babe Ruth Rookie card (shown) graded PSA 8 NM/MT that commanded a record price of $140,665.

The auction had a long litany of highlights, including, a 1923-25 Hillerich & Bradsby Louisville Slugger game-used Babe Ruth Bat graded Mears A-10 ($152,849), a single-signed Ruth ball ($16,405), a 1921 E121 Ruth PSA 6  ($12,660), a 1948 Leaf Ruth PSA 8 $6,562, a 1933 Goudey No. 144 Ruth PSA 6 ($4,101), a 1933 Goudey No. 181 Ruth PSA 6 ($4,921), and an extremely tough 1929 Star Player Candy Ruth card SGC 40 ($5,955).

Some of the card highlights included: 1915 Cracker Jack Ty Cobb SGC 88  ($22,967); 1932 US Caramel Ty Cobb PSA 8 ($9,383); 1934 Goudey No. 61 Lou Gehrig PSA 8 ($10,827); 1939 Play Ball Joe DiMaggio GAI 9.5 ($11,205); 1948 Leaf Satchel Paige GAI 8 ($37,285); 1949 Bowman Ralph Kiner PSA 10 ($12,139); 1951 Bowman No. 1 Whitey Ford PSA 9 (shown at right, $39,701); 1951 Bowman Mays PSA 8 ($9,022); 1952 Topps Bill Dickey PSA 9 ($9,022), 1954 Bowman No. 66 Ted Williams PSA 8 ($7,940); 1954 Topps Henry Aaron SGC 96 ($19,850), 1955 Topps Duke Snider GAI 9 ($8,964); 1958 Topps World Series Batting Foes (Mantle/Aaron) PSA 9 ($7,457); 1961 Topps Roger Maris PSA 9 ($6,340); and a 1962 Topps Mickey Mantle PSA 9 ($7,466).

Another of the highlights of the auction was the breakup on a card-by-card basis of one of the most difficult postwar baseball sets, 1948 Leaf. MHCC broke the No. 2 set from the PSA Set Registry, yielding a  Joe DiMaggio PSA 8 ($10,168), Stan Musial PSA 8 ($5,955), Ted Williams PSA 9 ($19,850), and a Frank Gustine PSA 10 ($21,617), as well many of the short prints from the set.

That list includes: Virgil Trucks PSA 6 ($1,712), Michaels PSA 8  ($3,868), Billy Goodman PSA 8 ($5,616), Harry Lowrey PSA 8 ($3,516), Al Zarilla PSA 8 ($6,229), Eddie Stevens PSA 7 ($2,740), Johnny Schmitz PSA 8 ($2,641), Al Dark PSA 7 ($2,552), Bobby Adams ($3,196), Tommy Henrich PSA 7 ($2,808), Barney McCosky PSA 8 ($4,680), Orval Grove PSA 8 ($5,663), Ed Miller PSA 8 ($5,663), Bob Feller PSA 6 ($3,868), Hal Newhouser PSA 8 ($6,329), Gene Hermansk (incorrect spelling) PSA 6 ($2,491), Emil Leonard PSA 7 ($2,491), Enos Slaughter PSA 8  ($3,930), Kirby Higbee PSA 7 ($3,648), Harry Walker PSA 8 ($3,829), Danny Murtaugh PSA 8 ($5,616), Harold Reiser ($4,641), and Floyd Baker PSA 8 ($6,167).

Some of the memorabilia highlights included: 1895 Base Ball Club Championship team photograph ($3,061); a stunning 1912 Boston Garter advertising display ($31,705); 1891 Cleveland Spiders vs. New York Giants scorecard featuring Cy Young on the cover ($2,324); a miniature 1894 Baltimore Base Ball Club Champions pin ($1,312); and a 1907 W-601 Sporting Life composite ($2,952); a Honus Wagner pencil-signed 3-by-5 card ($2,487); a nearly completely autographed 1953 Topps Baseball card set ($23,779); and a 1965-68 Louisville Slugger game-used Mantle bat ($24,019).

Brian Drent of MHCC remarked,”Without question, there has been an amazing response to prewar material as of late and the prices seem to be extremely strong in this area of the hobby.” In addition to the previously mentioned sale of the 1887 N690-1 Kalamazoo Bats Pittsburg Team Cabinet, other 19th-century material performed to equally impressive levels highlighted by an extremely scarce 1893 Just So Tobacco E. J. McKeon SGC 70 which realized $18,488, as well a nice group of high-end PSA 7 1887 N28 Allen & Ginters, including an Anson ($5,955), Clarkson ($2,625) and a Kelly ($3,281).

Some of the 20th-century card highlights included: a 1909-11 T206 Ty Cobb Bat Off Shoulder PSA 7 ($10,549); 1909-11 T206 Ty Cobb Bat On Shoulder PSA 7 ($8,311); 1909-11 T206 Ty Cobb Green Portrait PSA 6 ($6,103); a 1909-11 Ty Cobb Red Portrait PSA 7 ($5,548); a 1909-11 T206 Addie Joss Portrait PSA 8 ($6,189); a 1909-11 T206 John McGraw Portrait No Cap PSA 8 ($5,625); a 1909-11 T206 Christy Mathewson Dark Cap PSA 7 ($3,516); 1909-11 T206 Cy Young Bare Hand Shows PSA 7 ($3,868); 1911 T205 Ty Cobb PSA 6 ($7,926); and a 1912 T202 Hassan Triple Folder Speaker/Wood PSA 8 ($7,992).

Also: a 1933 Goudey No. 1 Benny Bengough PSA 7 ($10,462); 1933 Goudey Pie Traynor PSA 8  ($3.609); 1933 Goudey Jimmy Foxx PSA 7 ($3,493); 1933 Goudey Tris Speaker PSA 8 ($3,281); 1933 Goudey No. 160 Lou Gehrig PSA 7 ($5,360); and a 1950 Bowman Jackie Robinson PSA 9 ($9,925).

The MHCC auction also included a boatload of football, basketball and hockey vintage cards, headlined by the breakup of a stunning 1935 National Chicle Football set.

That grouping included: No. 1 Dutch Clark PSA 8 ($3,609); Pug Rentner PSA 8 ($1,278); Knute Rockne PSA 8  ($4,880); Ben Ciccone PSA 8 ($1,701); Cliff Montgomery PSA 8 ($2,265); Dale Burnett PSA 7 ($1,823); Bull Tosi PSA 6 ($2,487); Nic Niccolai PSA 8 ($2,778); Chester Johnston PSA 8 ($2,526); Bronco Nagurski PSA 7 ($9,022); and Bernie Masterson PSA 8 ($5,602).

Other highlights: a 1965 Topps Joe Namath PSA 8 ($4,921); 1972 Topps Roger Staubauch PSA 10 ($22,033); 1948 Bowman Max Zaslofsky PSA 9 ($3,493); 1969 Topps Lew Alcinder GAI 10 ($6,497); a 1969 Topps Oscar Robertson PSA 9 ($1,598); a 1952 Parkhurst No. 1 Maurice Richard GAI 8  ($4,227); a 1954 Topps Gordie Howe SGC 92 ($3,056); and a 1957 Topps Norm Ullman rookie ($1,934).

MHCC officials were also justifiably enthused about a 1955 Topps all-graded complete set that featured 187 of 206 cards graded PSA 8; the set sold for $51,151. The auction also featured the No. 2 ranked PSA Set Registry 1955 Topps Double Header set, which sold for $17,897, and another 1955 Topps set that was completely graded and predominantly PSA 7, which fetched $14,436.

Also: a 1956 Topps all-graded set of mainly PSA 6’s and 7’s ($11,483); a 1950 Drakes complete set that ranged in condition from good to near-mint ($4,880); a 1954 Red Heart all-graded PSA 8 set ($9,925); a 1959 American Motors Home Run Derby complete set ($11,326); a 1958 Hires Root Beer complete set with tabs ($4,101).

Besides baseball, other sports were very well represented by the following sales: a 1954 Bowman Football all-graded set ($11,508); a high-grade 1969 Topps Football all-graded set ($6,340); and the No. 1 PSA Set Registry 1966-67 Topps USA Test Hockey ($18,046).

Mile High Card Company is planning a May 2006 auction; to consign or to add your name to the mailing list to receive a catalog go to: www.milehighcardco.com, or call (303) 840-2784.

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