Hundreds of vintage baseball cards, original photography, vintage ticket stubs and display pieces are among the highlights in Love of the Game Auctions’ Spring Premier, which is open for bidding.
The auction catalog’s cover features the Graig Kreindler painting of Roberto Clemente that’s being sold to benefit UnidosUS, the largest Latino civil rights organization in the country
“We’re thrilled to partner with an artist as important as Graig on the sale of such a meaningful work of art,” stated Auction Director Al Crisafulli. “The cause is excellent. And as an artist in high demand, Graig has recently put a moratorium on accepting new commissions – so if you want the ability to purchase a brand-new Kreindler, this is your only chance for a while.”
Other key Clemente items highlight the auction, including a PSA 8 example of his rookie card (current bid $62,856) along with some tough regional and oddball issues, and an autographed 1958 Topps card.
As is the case with most Love of the Game auctions, the auction features a large assortment of cards, with a heavy focus on prewar baseball. One of the most notable is a scarce 1921 Exhibit card of Babe Ruth, graded EX 5 (MK) by PSA.
Another key auction highlight is an autographed 1925 Exhibit card of Hall of Fame pitcher Walter Johnson.
Vintage autographs make up a large component of the auction, highlighted by an enormous, single owner Baseball Hall of Fame autograph collection. Featuring nearly 240 different autographs, the collection is being sold in one group, with many of the more difficult and valuable signatures authenticated and encapsulated by PSA/DNA.
“It’s a great collection, assembled over the period of years by a dedicated autograph collector,” explained Crisafulli. “It’s not uncommon to see large groups of Hall of Fame autographs in auctions. But once you get up over 200 signatures, it gets more and more challenging. At 238 signatures, this group includes some really, really scarce ones.”
The auction features more than 100 lots of autographed cards, including a gorgeous 1938 Goudey Joe DiMaggio with a vintage fountain pen signature.
Other prewar Hall of Fame signed cards include Grover Cleveland Alexander, Paul Waner, Frankie Frisch, Stan Covaleski, Burleigh Grimes, Highpockets Kelly, Bucky Harris, Sam Rice, Red Faber, Charles Gehringer, Jim Bottomley, Gabby Hartnett, Edd Roush, Joe Sewell, Honus Wagner, Hank Greenberg and more. The auction also features some very rare signed cards from common 1920s players.
There are also numerous signed Hall of Fame rookie cards including Luis Aparicio, Ernie Banks, Yogi Berra, Lou Brock, Jim Bunning, Rod Carew, Steve Carlton, Whitey Ford, Bob Gibson, Reggie Jackson, Al Kaline, Ralph Kiner, Bill Mazeroski, Willie McCovey, Stan Musial, Jim Palmer, Brooks Robinson, Mike Schmidt, Red Schoendienst, Don Sutton, Dave Winfield, Carl Yastrzemski, and others. In all, nearly 150 different signed vintage cards are featured in the auction.
VINTAGE CARD SETS
It is rare for collectors to see complete T205 or T206 sets offered in an auction anymore. This auction has both – a complete grouping of 520 T206 cards (missing just the “Big Four” for completion), and a near-complete T205 Master Set (missing just one Hoblitzell and one Mathewson variation for completion).
Other complete prewar sets include 1934 Goudey, 1939-46 Salutation Exhibits (missing just Gehrig for completion), and 1941 Playball. Postwar complete sets include 1952 Red Man, 1953, 1954, 1956, 1957, 1958, 1959, 1960, 1961, 1964, 1968, 1969, and 1971 Topps baseball, 1964 Philadelphia and 1972, 1973, 1975, 1976 and 1977 Topps football, 1970 A1 Premium Beer basketball, 1963, 1968, and 1971 Topps Hockey, and 1948 Leaf boxing, along with some others.
VINTAGE BASEBALL MEMORABILIA
Some decades-old vintage pieces are among the top items here including a Chicago White Sox panoramic display that features all eight members of the team that were banned for their role in fixing the 1919 World Series.
The auction also features a rare and desirable 1934 Dizzy and Daffy Dean Beech-Nut Tobacco advertising display, a 1912-19 pro-model bat game-used by Hal Chase, a 1916 Patridge’s sports equipment catalog with a 1915 Red Sox team photo featuring a rookie Babe Ruth and a pair of rare 1905 Strobridge Lithograph baseball prints.
Vintage Type 1 photos are also well-represented, with more than 80 individual lots including beautiful Conlon and Thompson photography.
TICKETS AND TICKET STUBS
The catalog has a large assortment of tickets including World Series stubs and full tickets from the 1930s and 1940s. The most notable stub in the auction from Game 3 of the 1932 World Series, the Babe Ruth “Called Shot” game.
Other noteworthy tickets include a stub from the 1949 All-Star game (the only All-Star game at Ebbets Field and the first to include Black players), a 1945 World Series Game 4 stub (the “Billy Goat” game), Game 4 of the 1947 World Series (Satchel Paige’s only World Series performance), a September 24, 1969 Shea Stadium ticket stub (the game the Miracle Mets clinched the pennant), an August 3, 1979 Yankee Stadium stub (the first game after Thurman Munson’s tragic death), and notably, a May 30, 1995 Seattle Kingdome full ticket – the day of Derek Jeter’s first major league hit.
The auction will run through April 2.