Featuring Ruth and Cobb, Collection Left For Evaluation and Purchase Offer
October 18, 2017
Every week at Just Collect, we receive hundreds of phone calls and emails about card collections. We discuss the the cards, help identify the contents, review images, prepare spreadsheets and make assessments about their value. While many have a lot of the same similarities, there are some that pose a different method of handling. While the straight forward collections are the most simple, the more challenging collections can me the most rewarding -- and not just monetarily, but in sharing stories and learning about the people that collected the cards.
One such collection recently come to us from an out of the area collector that was visiting family nearby and wanted to come to our Somerset, New Jersey office to personally deliver his collection for review. He had nearly two dozen graded cards that he had previously given us a spreadsheet and on which we had done a preliminary evaluation. Upon his arrival, we reviewed the graded cards and began to review the balance of the ungraded portion of the collection and realized that the collector was short on time and that to perform a proper appraisal; the collection would require more time than we had available.
We're Going to Need More Time
So, what can you do when a full evaluation is needed, but there isn't really enough time to accomplish the task? You ask for more time. Given that the owner wanted to bring the cards in person, and that our purchase offer would obviously be over $10,000, we weren't sure that would be an option, but we asked and the owner agreed. In his own words:
John set up an appointment for me to meet with Scott (VP of Just Collect). When I got there Scott had reviewed the list and valued the graded cards. Scott reviewed my collection for about an hour and asked if I would leave the cards (2880) for detailed review. After taking for a while you can get a good feel for someone. I felt full trust in Scott and the company in leaving my collection of which I was given a receipt.
The Collection Has Traveled The World
As we met with a collector, we learned that had worked for decades with the U.S. Department of Defense and had been stationed around the globe before finally retiring in Virginia. While we reviewed the collection, he and his wife talked about being stationed in Japan, Europe and other places around the world and that he always had a portion of his collection with him. He began collecting in earnest around 1983, the early days of the mass-production, but luckily, he focused on vintage players and stars. Probably a byproduct of being overseas and facing the possibility of moving again, he seemed to build his collection with a determination of keeping it smaller and easy to transport. To this end, he procured singular, higher value cards rather than complete sets and runs of more modern issues.
Hall of Fame Rookies!
We had reviewed and assessed the value of the graded cards in the collection and discussed them with the gentleman. We were in basic agreement on the value and the price that Just Collect would pay, so it would all come down to the value of the ungraded. We focused on the higher value cards in the ungraded portion and there were several, including a 1939 Play Ball Joe DiMaggio rookie and a 1951 Bowman Willie Mays rookie card. Also, there was a 1955 Topps Roberto Clemente, a 1968 Nolan Ryan and several other Hall of Fame rookie cards like 1965 Topps Joe Morgan and a couple of 1968 Topps Johnny Bench rookies. Once we were able to reach agreement upon condition, we agreed on the value. The daunting task would be evaluating the other 2,800 or so ungraded cards.
There was also a second year 1952 Bowman Mickey Mantle card graded PSA 2 Good in the collection. Mantle is always a strong card and his early issues have value in all conditions, so even though this card was a PSA 2, it still has more value than any other card in the set and this example looks pretty darn nice for a PSA 2!
The easiest task was valuing the graded cards in the collection. There were some nice looking cards that had incredible eye-appeal and we were able to bumps the values to the higher end of the scale. Included in the graded lot were two very nice looking Babe Ruth cards. The 1933 Goudey Ruth was graded SGC 30 Good, but has some of the sharpest corners we've seen on a card with such a low technical grade. Also, the 1948-49 Leaf Ruth was graded BVG 3 Very Good and also presented very nicely for the grade.
The Hit Kings!
Two of our favorites were from the all-time Hit Kings, Peter Rose and Ty Cobb. Rose was featured in the "floating head" issue on his 1963 Topps rookie card that was graded PSA 7 Near Mint. The card was very well centered and appeared very strong for the grade. We will be very excited to see how this does at auction. The key card in the collection was 1909-11 T206 Piedmont ad back Ty Cobb Bat On Shoulder graded PSA 4.5 VG-EX+. The card had great centering and registration and Cobb cards have been some of the hottest and most desired cards in the market the past 6 months, so again, we'll be very excited to see how this high end example does when offered for public auction.
So, why did this collector end up choosing Just Collect and have the confidence to leave his collection with us? We'll let you read the reasons in his own words:
Now that I'm retired I wanted to get things cleaned out and selling my baseball collection was on the top of my list. I searched the web for potential buyers and contact a few to get a feel of what was needed to get a appraisal/offers. Just Collect was my third contact and I spoke with John. John was very polite and professional. He gave me details on what to expect in keeping my collection appraised. I didn't want to mail the collection for I wanted to see someone in person to present my valuable collection (at least valuable to me). I provided John a listing and photos of primary cards. I was going to be about an hour away from their NJ office so I decided to drive the collection to them. The following week Scott provided me with a detailed offer of which I agreed. The entire process take about a week and when very smoothly. I was very happy in every stage working with John and Scott. For a prompt payment and hassle free experience I highly recommend using Just Collect.
Our Buying Philosophy
We've run into a wide range of people and collections over the past decade. Although we are known for buying vintage sports cards and especially vintage basketball cards, we are also extremely interested in buying non-sports cards, also!
Every collection and every collector is different and we treat EVERY collection with the respect and attention that we show for our own collections. We understand that many have put their heart and soul into building their collection. So when you're ready to sell, Just Collect understands the feelings that you're going through and we will work with you to help you reach a decision that is a WIN/WIN, because if you're not happy, we're not happy.
We Are Always Buying
Just Collect is always buying vintage sports and non-sports cards from 1879 to 1979 as well as select modern cards. If you have a collection that you are considering selling, contact us today to discuss your collection and get our industry leading purchase offer. If you have a collection that you want appraised, please contact us and we would be happy to discuss your collection and help you understand the real cash value of your collection in the current marketplace.
The Around the Globe Vintage Baseball Card Collection Video: