Notebook: 1979 Topps Pete Rose Sells for…What? MLB Cancer Auction, Autograph ‘Consistency’, Astrodome Seats

PSA 10 1979 Topps Pete RosePSA’s Set Registry and some very passionate…and very wealthy…collectors.  We’ve tracked several auctions of rather pedestrian modern era cards lately that have sold for mind-boggling numbers, like this 1979 Topps Pete Rose PSA 10.

There are five of these in existence—not just one—but the winning bid is something you have to see to believe.


For the second consecutive year, Major League Baseball and its 30 Clubs have organized a Winter Meetings charity auction that includes once-in-a-lifetime experiences and unique items to benefit Stand Up To Cancer (SU2C). The initiative was inspired by the numerous members of the baseball family who have been diagnosed with cancer in recent years.

Various items and experiences are up for bid at MLB Auctions including numerous game-used baseballs and bases and even the chance to spend a day with the 2013 MLB Commissoner’s trophy awarded to the World Series champion Boston Red Sox.


Seeing this photo of newly signed Tom Brady football cards on Panini America’s blog over the weekend is a sight for the sore eyes of those who’d been hanging onto redemption cards for months.  They were in the mail this week.  It also serves as a reminder that no matter how much we may insist that a player’s autograph be ‘consistent’ when we try to determine whether it’s authentic, the fact is that many times players’ autographs aren’t consistent.

Autographed Tom Brady cards

Brady forms letters differently.  He writes straight across and on an up slope.  It’s human nature and if we each wrote our names 100 times, you could find more than two that looked nothing like what others may believe your autograph to be.

Brady signed these quickly, we can pretty much be assured of that.  Many times that’s how autographs are obtained.  A player is on the move.  One is trying to work his way through a crowd.  Another is signing an item while holding it against the back of someone’s shirt.  Maybe he’s drunk.

There are a lot of things that go into autograph authentication, many of which are universally true, but whether you’re buying or just spewing an opinion, to expect complete uniformity isn’t reasonable.


If you missed out on the sale of Astrodome seats and memorabilia, there’s still hope.  Reliant Park, the group which manages the old facility, is holding an online sale of 2,400 seats Wednesday.

Seats are $200 per pair with a limit of four pairs per person.  All sales are final and you’ll have to pick them up December 17.  No word on what else might be offered but you can check it out at