Mel Ott game-used memorabilia hitting market via SCP Auctions

Game-used memorabilia from one of baseball’s greatest sluggers is hitting the auction block next month.

SCP Auctions will be handling the sale of several items from Mel Ott, a Hall of Famer who hit 511 home runs and led the National League in long balls six times during a 22-year career — all with the New York Giants.

“It’s our pleasure to auction off these items from Mel Ott’s family,” says SCP Auctions President David Kohler. “He truly was a baseball treasure and we look forward to seeing how the bidding goes.”

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Real autograph, fake card: A Ric Flair story too good to be ‘woooooooooo’

There’s an old saying that if something too good to be true, then it probably is — and this collector recently got a reminder of just that.

With the recent health scare of pro wrestling legend “The Nature Boy” Ric Flair, I decided it was past time to track down a copy of his 2005 Topps Heritage WWE autograph card — a card that was never released in packs but had reportedly surfaced years ago.

It’s not that I needed a Flair autograph — I have it a few times and actually met him at a past show — I wanted this card because I’ve always had an affinity for Topps‘ earliest years of WWE cards. This was Topps’ first release in its current run, but Flair didn’t make the cut as part of a crop of signers that includes Hulk Hogan, Shawn Michaels, The Iron Sheik, “Rowdy” Roddy Piper, Trish Stratus, Stacy Keibler and so many more notables from the past.

I found one on eBay and examined the autograph in the auction photo closely even though it was certified by JSA. I checked other cards for sale from the seller to see if there were autographs that looked questionable — everything looked fine to me and the card was affordably priced ($50) compared to another seller who wanted nearly $900 for a PSA-authenticated and slabbed copy (and I’m not a fan of its autograph). This JSA one was complete with sticker and a certificate noting that it was a witnessed autograph, not just an authenticated one.

But, I never even thought about whether the card itself was legit — I figured somebody somewhere had gotten their hands on the original cards Flair was supposed to sign but didn’t — however I knew instantly upon arrival that the card was legit as one of Flair’s face-first flops to the mat.

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Jackie Robinson’s first MLB contract to hit auction block in November

It’s a signature that helped change the world, and it’s hitting the auction block in November.

It the autograph that adorns Jackie Robinson‘s contract to join the Brooklyn Dodgers on April 11, 1947, and it will be sold along with his Montreal Royals contract from 1945 at the museum that carries his name on Nov. 16 in New York City as part of a sale handled by Goldin Auctions. 

“There are many documents on display in museums that represent seminal moments in history which forever changed America such as The Declaration of Independence, The Gettysburg Address and the Emancipation Proclamation,” said Ken Goldin, owner of Goldin Auctions. “But most historians believe that the integration of baseball with the signing of Jackie Robinson had as great an impact on America as any other moment in history.

“In fact, Martin Luther King called Robinson the founder of the Civil rights movement. Bringing the most important baseball document and the founding document of the Civil Rights movement to auction is an awesome responsibility and we are honored to help find them a permanent home for future generation to enjoy.”

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Lou Gehrig’s 1925 New York Yankees contract heads to auction block

Steiner Auctions has a legendary piece coming in its next sale.

It’s Lou Gehrig‘s 1925 New York Yankees contract — his first full season — and it’s hitting the open market next month.

How much might it go for? Well, there was a recent auction of a previous contract that could set the stage for this one.

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Heritage breaks up a legendary set of 1933 Goudey baseball cards

If you’ve ever been interested in grabbing some high-end copies of cards from the landmark 1933 Goudey set and have the bank account that lets you do so, then a new sale from Heritage Auctions is for you.

Active until Sept. 21 is an auction breaking up one of the best PSA-graded sets of the brand that contains the traditional in-pack Rookie Cards of many legendary names.

And they’re in sometimes-untoppable conditions.

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Fanatics Auctions selling event-used Rookie Premiere jerseys & more

If you’re a dedicated collector or even a casual one, you already own a piece of the action from this year’s NFLPA Rookie Premiere found in a pack of cards.

But there’s also another way to get memorabilia from a crop of notable new NFL rookies from the event as Fanatics is auctioning event-worn jerseys, cleats and gloves from a number of the players right now.

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Asking price on a set of 1983 Madonna Polaroids? Just $350,000

The old saying is that a picture’s worth a thousand words, but in the case of pop music legend Madonna and an old set of Polaroids, that price is a bit different.

They’re $5,303 apiece — but fans of the icon still might call them priceless.

The set of 66 original images is being offered for $350,000 and it comes from Richard Corman, a portrait photographer who shot Madonna in 1983 — just six weeks before the arrival of her first album and her being thrust into the international spotlight.

“She had charisma like I have never seen,” Corman said in Vogue, which is noted in a listing for the photos via The Manhattan Rare Book Company. “When you look at somebody through the camera, you either see behind somebody’s eyes or you don’t. And with her, it was ‘Wow.'”

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Jim Stefano joins Goldin Auctions

Goldin Auctions has a new director of marketing and business development — and he comes from the trading card portion of the industry.

Jim Stefano will take on the role, according to Goldin Auctions founder Ken Goldin.

Stefano had spend the last four years as the senior director of product development at Panini America in Dallas, Texas. He previously worked seven years at Fleer/Skybox as its VP of product development and before that with Score Board and TRISTAR Productions.

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WWE legend Mick Foley auctions iconic memorabilia for charity

WWE Hall of Famer Mick Foley is cleaning out his closet for a cause.

The man who had an ear torn off during a match, was thrown off the roof of a steel cage to the floor in one of the most-shocking moments in WWE history, and made multiple personas household names around the world is also a big supporter of RAINN. He has helped that group with more than $500,000 in donations and support generated by wrestling fans through auctions like the one running for the next few days.

Among nearly 50 items up for grabs now? The boots worn in his last match and the chance for Foley to come to your Raw or Smackdown watch party anywhere in the continental United States.

What else is there? Keep reading for a visual rundown of some notable items and experiences in the auctions as well as direct links to them so you can see how much they’re going for now.

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National Sports Collectors Convention — the basics (so far)

The National Sports Collectors Convention is nearly here and the months of preparation are culminating in the show of all shows for sports collectors for five days in Chicago.

There will be plenty to see, plenty to do and plenty to buy and Buzz has been watching the developments the whole way. We’ll have galleries of images from the show floor and a few nuggets here and there in the coming days but there’s already been plenty written leading up to the show that you can all find right here.

Here’s a rundown of all past NSCC stories here on The Buzz …

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Two O.J. Simpson driver’s licenses will hit auction block via SCP

Does the run on O.J. Simpson memorabilia begin now?

The Hall of Fame running back was granted parole Thursday afternoon in Nevada after spending nine years in prison for armed robbery involving two sports memorabilia dealers in Las Vegas. Before that, he was acquitted in the murders of Nicole Brown Simpson and Ronald Goldman in 1995.

Not long after the new news on Thursday, one auction house had its own Simpson news. SCP Auctions will sell a pair of Simpson’s driver’s licenses in auctions in October — one issued to him in 1995 — around the same time that Simpson will be released.

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Board Buzz: Must-read threads on the Blowout Forums (July 16)

The Blowout Cards Forums are where thousands of collectors converge daily to discuss, well, a little bit of everything. Here are a few threads about collecting and more that you should check out right now.

What’s Buzzing Today: A big vintage find, new MLB breaks, Aaron Judge, Vladimir Guerrero Jr., The National & more …

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Futures Game memorabilia leads off All-Star Week at MLB Auctions

Game-used memorabilia from this year’s All-Star festivities will be hitting the auction block via MLB Auctions this week and the stars of the All-Star Futures Game are batting lead-off.

Game-used batting helmets, game-used baseballs, game-used caps, used batting practice jerseys and a game-used base are already up for grabs from the prospect showcase that the United States won, 7-6, over the World squad on Sunday evening.

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Aaron Judge’s MLB debut and first home run jersey hits auction block

Update (July 31): It sold for $160,644.05 when bidding ended on Sunday.

Aaron Judge owns The Big Apple this summer — and the hobby, too — and now somebody can own a truly historic piece of his memorabilia.

It’s the jersey he wore for his MLB debut and his first career home run, and it’s a key piece in Steiner Auctions‘ Mid-summer Classic auction running for the next 30 days.

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Babe Ruth’s 1927 World Series ring — and more — hits auction block

Update: The ring sold for $2,093,926, while the contract sold for $2,303,319.

“Wild Thing” is cashing in.

Babe Ruth‘s 1927 World Series ring is on the auction block and its owner, actor Charlie Sheen, is closing in on a seven-figure payday with more than three days remaining before the Lelands.com auction closes on this and one other very, very big piece of memorabilia from MLB history.

“We have sold and seen many great pieces of sports memorabilia in our nearly 50 years in the hobby,” reads the auction house listing. “But this is without a doubt the finest piece of all.”

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Hot Box: 1948 Bowman baseball find fetches more than $500,000

It shouldn’t exist — and that’s why it fetched six-figures at auction.

What you see here is a near-complete box of 1948 Bowman baseball cards — packs that originally cost just a nickel apiece back in the day when kids ate the gum and, if they cared, had a shot at Yogi Berra, Stan Musial, Warren Spahn and Bob Feller Rookie Cards.

This rarity hit the auction block not long ago and finally sold via Mile High Card Co. last week.

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Aaron Judge’s home run barrage has him on pace to be in elite company

If the season ended today, New York Yankees outfielder Aaron Judge would win the Triple Crown.

As a rookie.

With two homers on Sunday — one a highlight-reel worthy 496-foot shot — he upped his mark to 21 this season and that goes right alongside a .344 batting average and 47 RBI. Will the Triple Crown pace continue? Who knows, but the power is a barometer of baseball card potential and he’s on pace to be among the best rookies in MLB history.

He’s on pace to top the 40-homer mark and that’s been done just one other time by a rookie. Even if he struggles some, by season’s end he’s likely to be very close to — if not among — the top 10 sluggers for most home run seasons by a rookie.

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Dark Helmet already bringing forceful feel to ‘Spaceballs’ auction

The Force isn’t very strong with this one, but The Farce is huge.

The helmet that Rick Moranis wore as “Dark Helmet” in the 1987 Star Wars spoof Spaceballs is up for sale now via Profiles in History, a Calabasas, Calif.-based auction house.

The prop from the Mel Brooks film is estimated to sell for as much as $12,000 — and it’s almost there with nearly three weeks remaining in the auction.

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Bill Madden collection auction closes Tuesday with legendary items

If you’re a younger collector, you may not know the name, but the memorabilia of a long-time (and Hall of Fame honored) sports writer is headed to the auction block.

He’s Bill Madden — fun fact for collectors is that he literally helped Donruss build its roster of Rated Rookies in 1984 Donruss — and a number of his treasures will be sold next week.

Among the more than 400 lots will be photos, programs, signed items, signed books, press pins and more from some of the biggest names in MLB history.

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Michael Jordan’s game-used Converse shoes from 1984 Olympics already setting record via SCP

Update (June 11): The shoes sold for $190,373 after the auction closed this weekend.

They’re not Air Jordans but they’re already in some rare air as an SCP Auctions clock counts down.

They’re Michael Jordan’s game-worn and dual-signed Converse shoes from the 1984 Olympics — specifically the gold-medal-winning-game against Spain — and they’re on the auction block and already have set a record for a pair of game-used shoes. And that’s with more than two days remaining before the auction closes.

How much?

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Scooter Gennett’s historic game means hot certified autographs

You’ve probably seen the highlight reel of Scooter Gennett‘s four-homer, 10-RBI game for the Cincinnati Reds on Tuesday night but you may not realize how rare the feat is — or how rare his baseball cards might be.

He’s just the 17th player ever to hit four homers in a game — nobody has ever hit five — and he’s the first in the rich history of the Reds to do it. The last? Texas Rangers slugger Josh Hamilton back in 2012. It’s a club that includes five Hall of Famers — Ed Delahanty, Lou Gehrig, Chuck Klein, Willie Mays and Mike Schmidt — and sluggers Rocky Colavito, Bob Horner and Mark Whiten among others.

Now, about Gennett’s baseball cards …

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Heritage rocks music fans with big memorabilia in latest auction

It was 50 years ago today, Sgt. Pepper taught the band to play and one of the faces you can see on the famed cover of Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club band above can be yours.

No, seriously, one of the props on that cover of The Beatles’ iconic album that dropped in the United States on this day in 1967 is available in the newest Heritage Auctions sale running now until June 17.

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Aaron Judge’s first grand slam jersey hits auction block via Steiner

Update: The jersey sold for $45,578.40 after eight bids.

How priceless are the pinstripes of the hottest New York Yankee?

We’ll find out soon as the game-used jersey worn during Aaron Judge‘s first career grand slam from May 28 is on the auction block.

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Willie Stargell auction includes prime pieces from Pops’ career

It’s been more than 16 years since the baseball world lost “Pops,” aka Hall of Famer Willie Stargell, at age 61.

During a lengthy big-league career with the Pittsburgh Pirates, he was a World Series champ, a National League MVP and even Sports Illustrated‘s Man of the Year — and all those awards and more are up for grabs via SCP Auctions right now.

And there are even some impressive yet unusual items that some baseball fans might not even know about also available in the sale.

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Apollo 11 moon-rock bag could fetch millions in Sotheby’s auction

In the sports world, player-used equipment bags aren’t exactly prime material.

But a Neil Armstrong/Buzz Aldrin-used lunar sample bag from Apollo 11 with some moon dust still inside?

Well, Sotheby’s expects it could fetch as much as $4 million.

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First Topps Undertaker autograph hits eBay with hefty price tag

The Deadman has hit eBay.

The first Topps autographs signed by future WWE Hall of Famer Undertaker — just the third certified autographs of his career — have arrived in boxes of 2017 Topps WWE and the asking price for the first card to hit the auction site has a jaw-dropping Buy-It-Now price.

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SCP Auctions readies for sale of ‘original Wagner’ later this month

Update (June 11): This card sold for $609,294 at auction.

A low-grade Honus Wagner T206 baseball card with a lengthy lineage in the hobby is hitting the auction block as part of a meaty collection of vintage cardboard.

The J. Ross Greene Collection will be handled by SCP Auctions later this month and it includes “a lifetime accumulation of cards and memorabilia honoring diamond and gridiron greats from the turn of the century to the modern era” and “boasts more than 100,000 pre-war and post-war baseball and football cards” with many of them in runs of complete sets.

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Aaron Judge’s historic start sparks continuing cardboard frenzy

With 10 homers last month, New York Yankees rookie outfielder Aaron Judge tied the major-league record for newcomers — a mark set by Trevor Story of the Colorado Rockies last year.

Judge and Story are different stories when it comes to baseball cards, though, as the Yankee is readily available — and has been for years — on MLB cardboard and has plenty of autographs and Rookie Cards with more on the way. (Yes, Story also had ink and prospect cards — about 40 autos — before his arrival last season, but he wasn’t a big-market, can’t-miss guy who took his time to arrive with his presence in most prospect products before that time came. That’s Judge.)

Sure, it’s a long season, but right now Judge is a runaway to win the American League Rookie of the Year award with his homer total doubling the next-closest rookie and his 20 RBI in 22 games also leading all newcomers. He’s also hitting .303 so far, which ain’t shabby as he was a career .278 hitter in the minors. And, again, collectors (and dealers) benefit from this start as he’s got plenty of cards — new and old.

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When’s an NBA game program different? Steiner Auctions knows …

This probably looks like many other NBA game programs from the late 1970s and early 1980s but it’s very different than other simple pieces of memorabilia picked up at a game from the past.

It’s from a Washington Bullets game — the cover showcases the visiting team in this case — played on Oct. 26, 1984, and it’s on the block now via Steiner Auctions.

Why?

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MLB’s founding documents will hit auction block via SCP next month

MLB‘s founding documents are hitting the auction block this spring as SCP Auctions is handling yet another historic sale.

This time, it’s a 74-page hand-written artifact — the original constitution of The National League of Professional Base Ball Clubs — that outlines its objectives. Among them are to “encourage, foster and elevate the game of baseball, enact and enforce proper rules for the exhibition and conduct of the game, to make baseball playing respectable and honorable, to protect and promote the mutual interests of professional baseball clubs and professional baseball players and to establish and regulate the ‘Baseball Championship of the United States.'”

This follows the sale of the 1857 “Laws of Base Ball” for $3.26 million one year ago today by the Laguna Niguel, Calif.-based company

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Martin Luther King Jr. speech manuscript hits auction block

Update: The auction ended at $382,500.

A 20-page typed speech with hand-written notes by Martin Luther King Jr. is on the auction block.

The speech was delivered on July 6, 1965, in Chicago and included what is believed to be King’s first public statement of a phrase that became known very well as part of the civil rights movement, “we shall overcome.” In fact, that famous phrase ends the speech and is hand-written as part of a one-page addition to the prepared comments, which have been collected and bound.

Although it is not signed, the book is expected to sell for more than $500,000 via Goldin Auctions, which notes that other original past King speech manuscripts “have been appraised in the millions” and that the owner of the “I Have a Dream” speech has turned down $5 million.

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Graded vintage concert posters are big business — but may not be as pricey as you might think (gallery)

Vintage concert posters can be big, big business with iconic artists’ psychedelic promotions of the 1960s a particular focus for many.

CGC, which is known for grading comic books, also grades concert posters, handbills and postcards, helping collectors weed out bad examples of posters and helps show the elite pieces on a 10-point scale.

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This 1961-62 Fleer NBA box shouldn’t exist all these years later — but it’s on auction block right now

This sealed box of 1961-62 Fleer basketball cards really shouldn’t exist at this point more than 50 years after it was made, but it does and it’s worth a tad more than its original price of just $1.20.

(Yep, that was just $1.20 for the whole box.)

It will be selling for a tad more than that soon as it’s among many high-end items up for grabs in the current Robert Edward Auction. How much?

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Goldin Auctions plans expansion into comic book & comic art market

There will be a new player in comic book auctions soon.

Runnemede, N.J.-based Goldin Auctions — the collectible industry’s fastest-growing auction house with $25 million in sales last year — is launching a comic division and is seeking a knowledgeable and motivated individual with industry experience to be its consignment director and category manager.

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You can own a WrestleMania-used toolbox — if you have the money

“Here comes the money.”

That might not be the typical thought after seeing an autographed toolbox, but it’s certainly fitting given the frenzied bidding so far on one item over at WWE Auction.

And we do mean frenzied.

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