The M101-4 and M101-5 Mendelsohn/Sporting News sets are largely known for the presence of two key cards – Babe Ruth and Joe Jackson. Plenty of other big names, such as Ty Cobb and Walter Johnson, are found, too. But the sets offer plenty of other important cards worth collecting. Here are five of them that can go a little under the radar to those not familiar with the set.
Comiskey was a player in the 19th Century but still managed his way in the M101-4/5 sets. At the time of the sets’ release in 1916, he was the president of the Chicago White Sox. Only a few years later, of course, Comiskey’s 1919 team would throw the World Series and his role on that team helps keep prices on his cards healthy.
The card is interesting because you simply don’t get too many cards of baseball executives. Interestingly enough, Comiskey’s M101-4 card has his name spelled correctly while his M101-5 card calls him ‘Comisky.’ His cards in mid-grade condition start around $200-$300.
Thorpe belongs on this list with an asterisk. To collectors of the M101-5 set, his card is surely well known and highly desired. But many collectors unfamiliar with the set would be surprised to find his card here. While more known for football, Thorpe did play six years in the majors.
Thorpe’s M101-5 cards (he isn’t in the M101-4 set) are rarely seen on eBay but you do see them on occasion at traditional auction houses. A PSA 6 sold several years ago for a little over $11,500.
Urban ‘Red’ Faber
This name might not be too familiar to newer collectors but Faber is actually a Hall of Famer. Pitching 20 seasons in the majors, all with the Chicago White Sox, he won 254 games and posted a 3.15 ERA.
Even as a Hall of Famer, his cards often get overlooked in sets. But his M101-4/5 cards are significant because they are considered to be his rookie issues. His card is somewhat of a bargain for a pre-war Hall of Fame rookie card. This SGC 40, for example, sold for only about $200.
Mack’s cards are always popular. While the Hall of Famer had only a modest playing career, he became one of the game’s best managers of all time, winning five World Series’.
As opposed to player/managers, Mack was solely managing when these sets were released. He’s found in both the M101-4/5 sets and in mid-grade condition, his cards start around $200-$300 in low grade and go higher.
Last, but certainly not least, is a card of Hall of Famer George Sisler. Like Thorpe’s card, Sisler’s is certainly well known to M101-4/5 collectors. And even collectors not pursuing those cards are familiar with him. But Sisler’s card is under the radar here because many do not realize this is his rookie card.
Sisler was a hitting machine in the 1910s and 1920s and also won a Most Valuable Player award in 1922. His card (found in both sets) is not inexpensive, even in lower grade. A modest SGC 40 sold for more than $1,100 in 2016.