Bob Gibson Collection Helps Pace Legendary Auctions’ $1.75 Million Live Sports Sale
There's no question that the U.S. economy is still in the doldrums. While some recent indicators suggest the worst of the current recession may be over, money is still tight for many people.
Despite that reality, top quality sports memorabilia can still find willing buyers and realize high prices. That became clear the weekend of the National Sports Collectors Convention in Cleveland, as the Legendary Auctions Live Sports sale held at the House of Blues racked up $1.75 million in winning bids.
The centerpiece of the event was the personal collection of St. Louis Cardinals great Bob Gibson. The Hall of Fame hurler offered up a number of unique and personal items with an eye on splitting the proceeds between his family and the Baseball Assistance Team, a charity that helps the loved ones of former ballplayers who are down on their luck.
Five items from the Gibson collection closed at $45,000 or more. Leading the way at $120,000 was the actual National League MVP Award Gibson received for his incredible performance in 1968, when he went 22-9 with a 1.12 ERA and tossed 13 shutouts.
Not surprisingly, Gibson was named Cy Young winner that season, and that award was sold for $84,000. His two world championship rings - one from 1967 as a player and one from 2006 as a coach - and his Hall of Fame plaque also easily recorded five-digit sales.
Impressive prices were also realized for other items in the sale. A restored T206 Honus Wagner card sold for $220,000. This is believed to be the most that a restored baseball card has ever sold for. A complete game-worn uniform from 19th Century baseball player Bill Hoffer closed for $105,000, as did a 1903 World Series program.
Though the live summer event is the highlight of Legendary Auctions' 2009 slate, the company is accepting consignments for upcoming auctions in August and November. The auction house is also scheduled to attend the Philadelphia Sportscard and Memorabilia Show in Valley Forge, Pa. from September 25th to 27th, and the Chicago Sun-Times Show from November 20th to 22nd.