1912 T227 Ty Cobb - Honest Long Cut (SGC 55 VG/EX+ 4.5) - "1 of 2" SGC Honest Long Cuts & the HIGHEST GRADED SGC EXAMPLE!
Of all the Ty Cobb pre-WWII cards sought after by avid vintage collectors, none provide a more aesthetically brilliant portrayal of the "Georgia Peach" than his representation on the ultra-desirable T227 "Series of 8 - Champions" issue. In 1912, the "Honest Long Cut" and "Miners Extra" tobacco brands included a single card representing one of the era's prominent sports stars. The "Series of Champions" 25 subject checklist included sports personalities from baseball, billiards, car racing, swimming, wrestling, golf, horse racing, etc. Four separate baseball players were issued including Ty Cobb, Chief Bender, Frank Baker and Rube Marquard, with ALL FOUR presented in this auction (as well as boxing legend Jack Johnson).
Unquestionably, the Cobb subject is the most valuable of the 25 athletes, and stands as one of the most popular "Georgia Peach" pre-war cards due to its imposing Cobb batting image. Extremely condition sensitive, most of the remaining oversized T227 cardboard specimens are found in low-grade condition with mid-grade examples near impossible to come by. With that in mind, presented here just happens to be a T227 Honest Long Cut Ty Cobb example residing in an outstanding SGC VG/EX+ 4.5 holder. Justifying the condition sensitivity is the SGC "Pop" Chart listing 38 encapsulated Honest Long Cut Cobb's with only a single other specimen at this mid-grade plateau and NONE graded higher! Indeed, synonymous with Cobb's unparalleled batting feats, is this world-class offering that proudly stands as the finest SGC Cobb Honest Long Cut extant! Owning any vintage mid-grade Cobb card is impressive, but what could be more rewarding than capturing this SGC 4.5 T227 gem that virtually never appears at this extremely rare technical assessment (virtually all of the circulating copies depict poor eye appeal and reflect "1" through "3" grades).
Due to Cobb's revered stature, esteemed enthusiasts actively pursue his ultra-obscure cardboard collectibles. Cobb's incomparable batting achievements include the highest lifetime batting average (.366), a 1909 Triple Crown season, three .400 or better batting averages and 12 seasons in which he led the American League in batting (including 9 consecutive seasons from 1907 1915!). He is unquestionably one of baseball's greatest five tool players ever since he could hit for average and power (when he so desired), field, run and throw as well if not better than any of his dead-ball era peers. The presented copy provides, arguably, the most popular Ty Cobb image affixed to any pre-war Ty Cobb cardboard artifact, with his majestic batting image encompassing a majority of the frame.
Atypical for this example is the near perfect registration and bright, almost radiant like, yellow background that normally presents itself in a dreary manner. The relatively clean white borders atypically reveal no serious soiling, and remarkably, no major creases are evident. Fine mid-grade corners, centering moderately favoring the lower right edges, and a super clean verso including the Honest Long Cut advertisement complete this 106-year old masterpiece that has relatively defied "Father-Time". Last year, the other Honest Long Cut sold sold for nearly $11,000, and needless to say, advanced enthusiasts surely realize the staggering pricing upticks the hobby has realized since then for Ty Cobb's highly coveted cards. Simply stated, this T227 Honest Long Cut Cobb shares the spotlight with a single other SGC example as the finest of its kind, meriting it the highest hobby accolades via its breathtaking eye appeal and "rare for the grade" status!
MIN BID $3,500