500 Home Run Club Single-Signed Ball Collection (18) - All Graded GEM MINT 10 by PSA/DNA
Starting Bid - $1,000.00, Sold For - $5,628.75
This extraordinary offering, which features fourteen different 500 Home Run Club single-signed balls (plus four others, including Pujols, who will probably join the Club this season), is comprised only of balls that have been graded GEM MINT 10 by PSA/DNA. The 500 Home Run Club members represented in the collection are Willie Mays, Hank Aaron, Ernie Banks, Harmon Killebrew, Willie McCovey, Reggie Jackson, Barry Bonds, Alex Rodriguez, Mike Schmidt, Gary Sheffield, Frank Thomas, Eddie Murray, Frank Robinson, and Rafael Palmeiro. Also included in this collection are GEM MINT 10 single-signed balls of Albert Pujols (who should join the club this year; he is only 25 home runs short) and three players who at one point appeared to be on track to break the 500 home-run mark: Carlos Delgado (473), Vladimir Guerrero (449), and Andruw Jones (434). Each signature has been scripted in blue ink across the sweet spot of an official Major League (Selig) ball. All of the balls are housed in their original sealed cases and are accompanied by their individual PSA/DNA LOA and/or COA, with the exception of Pujols. This remarkable high-grade single-signed ball collection features fourteen of the twenty-five members of the venerable 500 Home Run Club. The eleven players missing for completion are, of course, Ruth, Foxx, and Ott (GEM MINT 10 graded balls for each of these three players are not even listed in the SMR due to either their extreme rarity or because no examples are known), plus Mickey Mantle, Ted Williams, Ken Griffey Jr., Mark McGwire, Sammy Sosa, Jim Thome, Manny Ramirez, and Eddie Mathews. A 500 Home Run Club collection of GEM MINT 10 single-signed ball, as one might expect, is extremely difficult to assemble and this is only the third such collection we have ever offered (a slightly smaller offering appears elsewhere in this auction). The only other collection (17 balls) we have offered previously appeared as Lot 1125 in REA's May 2010 auction, where it sold for $4,406.
Ideally, the eight examples needed for modern-day completeness are all obtainable and the collector who purchases this group, given time, should eventually be successful in amassing a complete 500 Home Run Club GEM MINT 10 single-signed ball collection (which, we might add, would be, to the best of our knowledge, the first of its kind, as we know of no collector having ever accomplished the task). As a point of reference, the SMR value for the offered collection, excluding Sheffield, Thomas, Delgado, Jones, and Guerrero (no values yet listed for those balls) is $3,235; however, we feel that that number might be very low, given the extraordinary quality of each ball and especially given the difficulty and cost of obtaining the most recent members. This is a modern-day collecting classic and an extraordinary collection exactly as is. The assembly of this collection in such incredibly high grade and quality will most likely be even more greatly appreciated in the years to come. LOA from James Spence/JSA. Total: 18 balls. Reserve $1,000. Estimate $3,000+. SOLD FOR $5,628.75