Sports Collectors

Early Willie Mays Cards, Fleer Basketball, 1954 Topps Pack Key $13.3 Million REA Sale

A 1952 Topps Willie Mays graded PSA 8 sold for a record price of $258,000 as Robert Edward Auctions closed out its final catalog sale of 2021 late Sunday night.  A 1951 Bowman Mays rookie card, also graded 8, went for $264,000.

Mays and some familiar icons from the vintage card market were hits with bidders, but the top two selling items were on the basketball side.  One of the best 1986-87 Fleer Basketball sets on PSA’s registry with 130 of the 132 cards rated Gem Mint 10 sold for $270,000.  Only the Michael Jordan rookie and Johnny Moore cards graded at a lower level–both Mint 9s.  An unopened box of 1986-87 Fleer packs also sold for $270,000.

Early Willie Mays Cards, Fleer Basketball, 1954 Topps Pack Key $13.3 Million REA Sale

In all, the auction of more than 2,700 lots generated $13.3 million.  In all, 15 lots sold for more than $100,000 and 234 lots sold for more than $10,000.

Among a trove of Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig cards was a rare 1917 Boston Store Ruth, graded SGC 3.  The image from early in Ruth’s Boston Red Sox career went for $240,000–more than $100,000 higher than the last sale through REA of the same card in the same grade just three years ago. 

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A pair of PSA 8 Gehrig cards from the 1934 Goudey set also cracked the six-figure mark, with #37 netting $132,000 and #61 grabbing a final price of $108,000.

A 1957-58 Topps Bill Russell rookie card graded 7.5 by PSA netted $150,000, by far a record price for the grade while a 1963 Topps Pete Rose rookie card graded PSA 9 tied the all-time record price of $150,000.

The auction also included a 1954 Topps Baseball 5-cent pack PSA 8 that sold for $168,000, a record price for any unopened pack ever graded by PSA.

Early Willie Mays Cards, Fleer Basketball, 1954 Topps Pack Key $13.3 Million REA Sale

Among the memorabilia sold was an exceptionally rare program from the first modern World Series in 1903 which realized $108,000.

Other sales included:

Complete results can be found here.

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