Like shoppers on Black Friday, collectors stormed into Robert Edward Auctions’ Spring catalog as soon as the cyber curtain opened on the afternoon of April 13. Within the first 24 hours of bidding, an astounding 10,345 bids totaling $3.2 million were dropped on the 2,680 lots.
Once an annual event, the auction is now one of two held by the company each year but doubling the frequency hasn’t dampened the enthusiasm of hardcore collectors who appreciate the depth of sports and non-sports material from the 1860s to the modern era.
Leading the way thus far is a $180,000 bid placed on a PSA 8 1952 Topps Mickey Mantle (including the 20% buyer’s premium to be added to all winning bids). Two lower grade 1916 Babe Ruth rookie cards have combined to reach $160,000.
Numerous other items in the current auction have either never been sold before or haven’t been available for at least a decade. Rare proofs of three legendary Topps rarities, the Konstanty, Stanky, and Roberts from the 1951 Major League All-Stars series and originating the in collection of Topps executive Woody Gelman have soared to $84,000, led by Hall of Famer Roberts at $48,000. The 1961 Topps Dice Game Mickey Mantle card is another postwar rarity that has excited collectors to the tune of $66,000 so far.
A newly discovered T206 Ty Cobb with a Broad Leaf 460 back, only the second known example, resonated with collectors, who have driven the price to $54,000. REA officials estimate that the price could double before the auction ends.
“The incredible early action in our auction speaks to the excitement that an REA auction generates and the appreciation collectors have for the outstanding material that we put out time and time again,” said REA president Brian Dwyer.
- 1952 Topps #311 Mickey Mantle SGC 84 – $54,000
- 1917 D350-2 #147 Standard Biscuit Babe Ruth PSA 2 – $48,000
- 1932 Babe Ruth Game-Used Bat MEARS 9.5 – $48,000
- 1914 Cracker Jack #88 Christy Mathewson SGC 40 – $39,000
This auction features the first installment of a remarkable postwar collection of hundreds of sets from 1948 through 1979. In addition to the Dice Game Mantle, several rarities from this collection are getting collectors’ attention, including a 1953 Stahl Meyer Mickey Mantle PSA 6 ($12,000), a 1968 Topps 3D uncut sheet with Clemente ($10,200), and the #1 ranked 1953 Glendale Meats set ($9,000). Dozens of other rare type cards are also attracting interest from advanced collectors.
REA is once again utilizing the auction closing method they pioneered in 2016 that eliminated auction closes well into the early morning hours. Extended bidding starts at 12 PM EST on Sunday, May 6 and the auction will close prior to midnight the same day. According to Dwyer, the move has resulted in much higher bidder involvement and higher prices since its implementation. Other auction houses have adopted a similar policy.
“In our mind, it’s the simplest concept to grasp,” Dwyer stated. “When collectors are awake, they are more likely to bid; when they are asleep, they are not going to bid.”
The auction is set to close on Sunday, May 6.
For more information on the auction, to view lots, register to bid, or request a free catalog, visit www.RobertEdwardAuctions.com. REA is also currently assembling its Fall Auction and is accepting consignments with early consignor specials being offered.