1949 Bowman PCL Complete Set (36): #2 PSA Set Registry!

Sold For: $8,400

Auction Year: 2016 fall

Lot: 872

Item Year: 1949

Category: Postwar Baseball Cards (1948-present)

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Complete 1949 Bowman PCL set (thirty-six cards), entirely graded and encapsulated by PSA. This issue has always been one of the legendary rarities of PCL and postwar-card collecting. This set is ranked second on the PSA Set Registry with an overall GPA of 4.53. This is an extremely strong complete set of these legendary rarities. The PSA grading composite is as follows: Six EX-MT 6: #7, 19, 20, 22, 23, and 24. Fourteen EX 5: #1, 3, 4, 8, 9, 15, 16, 17, 25, 26, 28, 30, 35, and 36. Ten VG-EX 4: #2, 5, 6, 10, 12, 13, 18, 31, 33, and 34. Six VG 3: #11 (MK), 14, 21, 27, 29, and 32. 1949 Bowman PCL cards are particularly difficult to find in such strong condition due to the quality of the paper stock on which they are printed, which makes them so susceptible to soft corners. Even the few lowest-graded cards in the set are impressive-looking, each with a far superior appearance than that suggested by their technically accurate assigned PSA grades. It remains a mystery as to exactly why Bowman issued cards featuring PCL players, or exactly how these cards were actually issued. Many believe that Bowman PCL cards were regionally issued in 1949 Bowman packs along with regular major leaguer Bowman cards in some West Coast cities. The recollections of old-time collectors and the occasional small groups of cards found in original West Coast collections are supportive of this theory. Some 1949 Bowman PCL cards were apparently also originally issued in sheet form, as cards are often found with evidence of having been cut with scissors, possibly promotional sheets given to stores, though no uncut sheet has ever surfaced. The cards in this set are all of the more desirable factory-cut variety. Bowman obviously wanted to capitalize on the popularity of the PCL but never pursued this marketing concept further. Their extraordinary rarity, the fact that they are so similar to regular 1949 Major League cards, and the fact that they were issued by Bowman, all contribute to their great mystique and unique status among Pacific Coast League cards. In the old days even a single 1949 Bowman PCL card could start a riot at a convention. Fortunately, they have always been so rare that this was not really a big issue. To date, a total of only 416 cards from this set have ever been graded. This lot represents just shy of 10% of the entire PSA-graded population. This is a very rare opportunity to acquire a beautifully assembled complete set of card collecting's premier postwar Pacific Coast League set. Total: 36 cards. Reserve $2,500. Estimate $5,000+.

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