Ty Cobb is one of the most collected players from the pre-war era. His cards have risen dramatically in value over the years and have not showed any sign of slowing down anytime soon.
Among Cobb’s more popular cards are his four issues in the T206 set, his T205 card, and some of his well known caramel/candy issues. But the Hall of Famer has plenty of unique and obscure cards out there as well. Here’s a look at a few of Cobb’s less known cards.
Ty Cobb 1910 Orange Borders
These mysterious cards are simply known as the Orange Borders cards. Extremely rare, they were printed on the outside of candy boxes.
The lone distinguishing characteristic of them is, well, the fact that they have those orange borders. Pictures of players are printed along with their name. Since the cards are blank-backed and have no other printing on them, little is known about them.
All of the cards in the set are rare and stars, like Cobb, are valuable. This one shown here was sold by REA was sold for more than $1,400 in 2018.
Ty Cobb 1923 German Transfers
This one is less like a card and more like a stamp. Technically, it’s called a transfer, but it’s still collected almost as if it were a card.
The issue is generally dated to 1923 but I am not sure that date has ever been confirmed. That has likely followed the W515 strip card set dating, which is where pictures on these transfers have come from.
Cobb’s card in the W515 strip card set is not a pretty one so it stands to reason that his image here is likewise offensive. It’s a crude drawing of a legendary player and the only saving grace here, really, is that pictures on other transfers are not great, either.
But, hey – at $100 or less, it’s hard to complain.
Ty Cobb 1935 Whitman Game Card
Cobb’s 1935 Whitman Game card fits the oddball label without question. This card technically does not even picture Cobb. Rather, he is named on it.
The card is part of a card game to be played at parties. You might recall that I wrote about the set nearly two years ago. Most of the cards in it are not sports-related. However, a few are, including this one of Cobb and another for the legendary Babe Ruth. The object of the game is to mimic the action depicted on the card. As Cobb was a notorious baserunner, participants were asked to imitate him making a wild dash for home.
If you’re looking for one of Cobb’s cheaper pre-war cards (and can get past the ridiculous image on the front), this one is for you. The card starts around $25-$50 usually and I’ve seen asking prices for more than that on high-grade ones. But you can get it even cheaper than that by finding the full game, which is often sold at a better price than what savvy baseball card dealers offer the Cobb for.
Ty Cobb 1929/1930 Rogers Peet
The 1929-30 Rogers Peet set was a large, multi-sport release that included stars in a variety of sports. Cobb is featured prominently along with dozens of other baseball players.
Rogers Peet was a men’s clothing store and the cards are quite rare. They were basic, including a black and white picture on the front along with the player’s name and a card number. Backs of the cards are blank.
The cards are rarely seen and even on eBay are not easy to come by. Given the rarity, though, the cards are surprisingly affordable. Modestly graded Cobb cards start at around $500 and even high-grade ones are not expensive by comparison with Cobb’s tobacco and candy issues. A PSA 7 sold in 2018 for just over $1,100.
Ty Cobb 1928 Sociedade Industrial dos Tabacos de Angola
This international card is another one of Cobb’s tougher rarities. Like the Rogers Peet card, it is part of a multi-sport issue produced by a tobacco company called Sociedade Industrial dos Tabocos de Angola. Loosely translated (per Google translate, anyway), that means, The Industrial Tobacco Society of Angola.
Any card from the set is pretty tough to find, though you do see them on eBay. Collectors with this card actually get a two for one as Cobb is shown along with the legendary Babe Ruth.
The card is black and white with only a card number on the front along with the picture of the two players. The back includes a short description of the subjects and also an advertisement for the tobacco company.
It is rarely seen and when it is, the price tag is a hefty one. A modest SGC 4 sold in 2015 for a whopping $23,900 in a Heritage auction.