The M’s ran wild in the month of May as Heritage Auctions closed out its three-day Spring Sports Catalog Auction.
Cards and other items from Mickey Mantle, Willie Mays, Thurman Munson and Michael Jordan topped the list of the most popular pieces in the sale, which was spread out over two large catalogs. The sale took in $20.2 million.
A PSA 8 copy of Mantle’s 1951 Bowman rookie card was the biggest seller, bringing down $468,000–a big price in the new world order of high-priced cardboard–but well short of record territory.
Another higher end Mantle card did set a new mark, though. An SGC 6.5 1952 Topps netted a whopping $228,000–blowing past the previous record for the grade ($115,519) set just six months ago. A PSA 8 1952 Topps Mays graded PSA 8 settled at $180,000.
Another mark fell when one of just four PSA 9 copies of the popular 1971 Topps Thurman Munson sold for $199,999. Heritage had held the old mark of $162,000 set in February 2021.
Collectors also zeroed in on a 1916 Sporting News Babe Ruth rookie card. Graded SGC 3.5, it sold for $324,000.
A recent find of 39 1902-1911 Sporting Life W600 cabinet cards from the estate of a deceased former minor league combined to sell for $244,356, topped by a Rube Waddell that brought $50,400.
Another card from the W600 series–one of only two PSA graded examples of the Eddie Plank street clothes variation–went for $120,000.
Several high-grade complete sets were offered including the seventh ranked 1958 Topps Baseball Master Set on PSA’s registry. It sold for $108,000. The fourth best 1978 Topps set, with over 400 PSA 10s, rocketed to $96,000.
A game-worn Michael Jordan Chicago Bulls jersey was the second highest selling lot in the auction with the buyer set to pay $360,000 for the shirt Jordan donned during a February 23, 1998 victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers at the United Center.
The football Tom Brady tossed to set what is the current NFL regular season touchdown pass record of 624 sold for $69,000–well beyond the pre-sale estimate. The ball was given to a Bucs fan seated in the lower bowl in Tampa and the pass and ball presentation were all captured on videotape.
Among the other memorabilia sold: A California Angels jersey attributed to use by Nolan Ryan during his record-breaking 1973 season, which soared to $126,000; the only known full ticket to Kobe Bryant’s 1996 NBA debut (PSA 2), which sold for $75,000 and a low grade ticket stub to Mantle’s Yankees debut that fetched $52,800.
Items from the collection of Pro Football Hall of Famer Ronnie Lott headlined the second catalog, with his Super Bowl XXIV jersey bringing the most at $34,800. The Lott items brought in over $111,000 in all.
A portion of the proceeds will benefit the Bay Area children’s charity established by Lott early in his career.