Lot # 4: Spectacular 1925 Exhibit Supply Co. - Lou Gehrig’s “Gray Tint” Rookie Card (PSA EX 5) – “1 of 4”; Only 3 PSA Examples Graded Higher!

Category: 1921-1939

Starting Bid: $200,000.00

Bids: 20 (Bid History)

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(LOT 4)
Spectacular 1925 Exhibit Supply Co. - Lou Gehrig's "Gray Tint" Rookie Card (PSA EX 5) – "1 of 4"; Only 3 PSA Examples Graded Higher!

The sale of a Henry Louis Gehrig 1925 rookie card this past winter for the unfathomable sum of $802,000 rocked the collecting community, with the PSA 6/MK qualifier specimen redefining the value of this iconic heirloom. For the longest time, Gehrig's inaugural '25 Exhibit, although reaching the $100K+ mark, had been grossly undervalued versus other celebrated rookie cards such as the 1916 Babe Ruth M101 subject. While the Ruth rookie had experienced several pricing surges over the past several years, his immortal "Iron Horse" teammate had mysteriously been left behind with regard to justifiable pricing spikes, receiving a glaring lack of respect for its unappreciated "true" value. Further justifying that philosophy was the fact that "The Babe's" rookie reflected virtually a "double" population count versus the '25 Gehrig Exhibit card on the combined professional grading census reports (some 115-120 Ruth's versus only 55-60 Gehrig's). Babe Ruth VG examples are now approaching the half-million mark, a PSA 6 Ruth rookie fetched $940K in our previous auction, and a PSA 7 Ruth Rookie realized nearly $3 million in a private transaction, a resounding testament of how Ruth's inaugural MLB card continues re-writing the record books with seemingly each and every sale. That said, with the Gehrig rookie card count equaling only HALF of the total Ruth population, it would make perfect sense that the value of a 1925 "Iron Horse" Exhibit card will continue rising at a meteoric-like pace. For many years, one could easily rationalize these cardboard antiquities were super undervalued versus other high-end collectibles such as fine art and coins, especially considering inaugural cards of baseball's grandest stars represent a strong foundation for America's Pastime.

In lieu of this remarkable pricing uptick that clearly indicates no end in sight, we are proud to present one of Lou Gehrig's finest 1925 Exhibit Supply rookie cards extant, a spectacular PSA EX 5 marvel that has been joined by only 3 other examples on the illustrious PSA "Pop" chart, with a meager 3 specimens graded higher! Regarding the aforementioned $802K sale, one must also keep in mind that since a PSA "qualifier" typically represents a technical assessment reduction of two full grades, theoretically speaking, a "PSA 6/MK" is equal to a "PSA VG/EX 4" grade. That said, this museum worthy PSA 5 Gehrig offering actually exceeds the PSA 6/MK assessment that realized the extraordinary $802K pricing point. Indeed, it was only a matter of time for the value of a 1925 Lou Gehrig rookie exhibit card to take off like an ICBM missile towards an infinite-like stratospheric height. The incomparable legacy of Henry Louis Gehrig can be traced back to his Columbia University playing days where Gehrig dominated as both a standout pitcher and slugging first baseman. Catching the attention of renowned New York Yankee scout Paul Krichell, on April 28, 1923, Gehrig hit one of the longest home runs ever seen at Columbia's South Field. The mammoth 450-foot blast sailed completely out of the ballpark, prompting Krichell to sign Gehrig to a Yankee contract only two days later. While Gehrig would be called up to the majors before the end of the season, he would see limited time as a pinch hitter in both the 1923 and 1924 seasons, accumulating only 38 official at-bats in those two seasons.

It would be the 1925 season (the year his inaugural Exhibit Supply card was issued) that the "Iron Horse" would enjoy his first breakout season, batting .295 and walloping 20 home runs in nearly 500 plate appearances. Now considered one of the game's fearsome sluggers, Gehrig would embark on one of the most formidable careers in baseball history, typically categorized as one of the top five players in baseball history. The classic rookie-era batting image portrays Gehrig completing his mammoth swing as he connects on what is most likely another mighty blast; exhibiting fine "gray tinted" contrast and crystal-clear clarity. This awe-inspiring illustration "turns back the clock" to the 1925 campaign when the mighty "Iron Horse" was about to place his indelible stamp on America's Pastime; starting his miraculous 2,130 game streak on June 1, 1925 that sadly ends some 14 years when Lou pulled himself out of the lineup on May 2, 1939. Accounting for the somewhat "harsh" grade is very modest corner wear that certainly appears to be consistent with many "EX 6" specimens, and considering there are no visible surface flaws and/or glaring creases, most would agree this magnificent keepsake reveals eye appeal beyond its "EX 5" assessment. The lower left text box reveals a bold and vivid "HENRY L. GEHRIG – Infield – New York, A.L." text, and a clean blank back is the final compliment for this extremely "rare for the grade" inaugural Gehrig heirloom.

Virtually never does the opportunity arise to capture a mid-grade Lou Gehrig rookie card, especially compared to the seemingly infinite number of Mantles, Clementes and Aarons (just to mention a few post-war stars that surface in every auction. Any original collectible of Gehrig is widely sought-after within the collecting community due to his unequivocal legacy, let alone one that stands as his undisputable inaugural cardboard heirloom. Tragically, Gehrig's incredible career was cut short by the deadly "ALS" disease (now more commonly known as Lou Gehrig's disease) that took his life at the tender age of 37. Yet, with all of his "on the field" accomplishments, he will always be best remembered for his 2,130-consecutive game streak, accounting for his sacred "Iron Horse" nickname. Furthermore, his incomparable farewell "Luckiest Man on The Face of The Earth" speech at Yankee stadium on July 4, 1939 will forever stand as our National Pastime's "Gettysburg Address". He was the quiet hero, simply going about his business with a steadfast purpose that the mention of his hallowed name inspires a still tranquility amongst his vast following. When you think about a 2003-'04 Exquisite Collection LeBron James Rookie card recently selling for a staggering $5.2 million, it prompts the sophisticated collector to seriously contemplate the true value for one of the finest preserved "Iron Horse" rookie subjects. For all of these reasons, now is the time to seize this extremely scarce PSA 5 inaugural Lou Gehrig 1925 Exhibit that via its "low-pop" status and breathtaking aesthetics, just may suffice as the next legendary cardboard issue to join the illustrious "seven-figure club!"

MIN BID $200,000
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