You can have single sports cards, unopened packs and boxes, tickets and autographs encapsulated and graded. Magazines, too. The new Heritage Auctions catalog includes several authenticated and graded copies of Sports Illustrated, including the highest rated example of the first issue, from August of 1954.
The company’s September Showcase Auction includes 13 SIs all graded by CGC, which has been authenticating and grading magazines since 2009. While CGC’s publication grading is mostly centered around comic books where they’re a leader in the field, magazine grading has been gaining traction, which some popular issues selling for respectable sums.
The first edition of Sports Illustrated features Eddie Mathews of the Milwaukee Braves on the cover. It’s dated August 16, 1954 and famously includes the first of three SIs in ’54 and ’55 that had a tri-fold pullout gallery of Topps baseball card images. The magazine is graded 9.8 and currently has a high bid of $2,200.
The auction also includes Patrick Mahomes’ first appearance on the SI cover dating to his 2017 rookie season.
One of 11 graded 9.8, it carries a rather stunning high bid of $3,800 at the moment.
CGC grades magazines on a 10-point scale similar to those it uses for other paper collectibles.
Five vintage SI swimsuit issues are also being offered in the Heritage online catalog, which is set to close Saturday.