1916 M101-5 Babe Ruth Rookie Card #151 (SGC 20/1.5)
The term "the right to own a copy" in the illustrious sports card hobby typically applies to extreme rarities and/or world-class issues that virtually every enthusiast yearns to own, regardless of its technical assessment. In many instances, these hallowed cardboard treasures may not reflect the highest grades, but their sheer existence, fine aesthetics, and coupled paucity level still places them above their less significant peers. This is why esteemed enthusiasts typically dismiss the technical assessment for any sanctified 1916 Babe Ruth M101-5 rookie card, with this eye pleasing SGC 20/1.5 offering destined to be a centerpiece attraction in any world-class gathering.
The previously mentioned "right to own a copy" concept takes front and center stage for this cardboard crowned jewel that stands alongside the T206 Wagner, T206 Plank, Ty Cobb w/a tobacco ad back, and Baltimore News Ruth as one of the most coveted and valuable vintage issues extant. Furthermore, more than offsetting the stray creases is the atypical near-perfect centering and superb Ruth pitching image that combine to provide an eye pleasing example for any serious collector. It certainly appears that the potential value for this iconic rookie card knows no bounds, with its associated price tags continuing to steamroll ahead with tsunami like force. The floodgates have unquestionably opened with regard to the stratospheric pricing associated for this incredible heirloom, REGARDLESS OF ITS RESPECTIVE GRADE!
Irrefutable evidence of this extraordinary phenomenon can be directed towards sales of some lower grade 1916 M101 Ruth's. PSA 2 specimens have sold in the range of $110K - $165K over the past several years, and even a trimmed "SGC Authentic" realized a staggering $67K price tag. It is clearly obvious that advanced enthusiasts are carefully selecting the hobby's premier artifacts not only to satisfy their collecting goals, but also as a sound investment strategy to bolster their esteemed portfolios. True, the Honus Wagner T206 is the hobby's undeniable supreme cardboard gem, but it certainly appears that the 1916 Babe Ruth rookie card continues to make a relentless move towards competing with the hallowed Wagner keepsake. With that in mind, presented here is a golden opportunity to seize an affordable "low-end" Babe Ruth rookie card without having to "cough up" $250K - $600K for mid-grade or higher examples.
This SGC 20/1.5 1916 Ruth M101-5 blank back offering, while reflecting several stray obverse side wrinkles including a horizontal crease running directly across his right knee, depicts ultra-rare near-perfect centering and a super eye pleasing "Sultan of Swat" pitching image. The technical assessment is based on the aforementioned scattered wrinkles, rounded corners (that actually portray an aesthetically pleasing uniform look), and a reverse side stain situated near the upper left edge. These technical flaws in no way demeanor the classic and well centered Ruthian pitching pose that reflects "The Babe" at a time when he was about to embark on what would ultimately become the most heralded career of any player in our National Pastime's glorious history.
The cornerstone of virtually any cardboard gathering, no serious collection could possibly be considered complete without a 1916 Babe Ruth rookie card. There is no evading the fact that a rookie card of the incomparable "Bambino" is arguably a pinnacle collectible, comparable (not in value, of course) even to the majestic T206 Wagner as it relates to hobby significance. Think about the monumental impact that Babe Ruth has bestowed upon our National Pastime. We are talking about Babe Ruth, the greatest all-around player to ever grace a baseball field, who dominated the game as both an immortal Hall of Fame pitcher and hitter. Babe Ruth is baseball, the only player considered "above the game" itself based on his godly like stature both on and off the field.
Every avid cardboard enthusiast covets a rookie card of the incomparable "Sultan of Swat", and approximately 100+ combined PSA/SGC examples (with many SGC/PSA crossovers most likely inflating the true count by some 15-20%) just aren't enough to distribute amongst the memorabilia circuit. This overflowing "demand exceeding supply" scenario has escalated price tags for the Babe Ruth M101 Rookie card at an astounding rate, with this immensely underrated card achieving higher values with nearly each passing sale. For years, while certainly a five-figure plus collectible it was almost puzzling why the market value of a Babe Ruth M101 rookie card was not significantly higher.
The card hobby has defined a hollowed stature for any rookie card, let alone one that portrays the iconic image of our National Pastime's greatest player. Many of the existing Babe Ruth rookie cards are tightly secured by their fortunate owners who clearly comprehend the magnitude of their unparalleled investment potential. Now, courtesy of Memory Lane, you are afforded a grand opportunity to seize a fine Babe Ruth rookie specimen at a somewhat affordable price tag, with its surface blemishes not negatively impacting the "Bambino's" seemingly timeless pitching image. The "Babe's" irrefutable inaugural Major League baseball card, it offers a fine prospect for the hobbyist to finally capture this hallowed cardboard heirloom that would immediately reside as the centerpiece attraction in nearly any grandeur compilation!
MIN BID $25,000