Lot # 1: “Fresh to the Hobby” 1916 M101-5 #151 Babe Ruth Rookie Card – Blank Back SGC 2 Good

Category: Baseball

Starting Bid: $50,000.00

Bids: 33 (Bid History)

Time Left: Auction closed
Lot / Auction Closed

This lot is closed. Bidding is not allowed.

Item was in Auction "Fall Sets & Set Break 2021 Auction",
which ran from 11/13/2021 12:00 PM to
12/4/2021 7:00 PM

(LOT 1)
"Fresh to the Hobby" 1916 M101-5 #151 Babe Ruth Rookie Card – Blank Back SGC 2 Good

The most significant subject from this "fresh to the hobby" M101-5 near-set find is the super eye pleasing Babe Ruth rookie card presented here in an SGC 2 holder, exhibiting an abundance of stellar technical attributes beyond its technical assessment. In 1916, various manufacturers utilized a classic Babe Ruth Boston Red Sox image to help advertise their brand. However, it is generally assumed by many hobby enthusiasts that the M101-5 "Blank-Back" subject (no advertisement issued on the backside) was one of the inaugural 1916 issued Ruth rookie cards along with other M101-5 ad-back issues such as Famous & Barr, Holmes to Homes, Standard Biscuit, Successful Farming and Morehouse Baking. All releases, regardless of either blank back or manufacturer status, are categorized as the sanctified "Babe Ruth" rookie card. Reflecting unlimited investment potential in this lucrative market, it proudly stands alongside any T206 Wagner or Baltimore News Ruth as one of the most highly coveted pre-war baseball cards on the planet.

The illustrious card hobby continues to produce record-setting prices on a seemingly daily basis for its finest rookie card/iconic issues, evident by the recent stratospheric pricing points for legendary heroes such as Mickey Mantle, Michael Jordan, Tom Brady and of course, George Herman "Babe" Ruth. Card prices have spiraled to a new plateau, with the historic and record-setting sales for an SGC 3 T206 Honus Wagner ($6.6 million), PSA Mint 9 1952 Topps Mickey Mantle ($5.2 million); LeBron James 2003-04 Exquisite Collection rookie card ($5.2 million); and 2009 Mike Trout Bowman Chrome Superfractor 1/1 ($3.8 million) paving the way. Additional examples of this remarkable pricing escalation include record-setting sales for various Babe Ruth rookie cards such as a PSA 6 fetching $1.5 million and a PSA 7 (blank back) realizing over $3 million in a private sale. Even low-grade Ruth rookies are achieving stratospheric pricing points with a PSA 2 recently selling for $331K in a public auction! Indeed, the floodgates have opened for the hobby's highly coveted cardboard gems, and it comes as little surprise that Babe Ruth resides near the top of this soaring market with the potential value of a Ruth rookie knowing no boundaries.

Interestingly enough, we are now seeing an abundance of "modern sports stars" fetch $1 million+ prices, and considering Babe Ruth unquestionable standing as the most renowned all-time sports figure (with all due respect to Jordan & Brady), we can only begin to speculate the "lost ground" the hallowed 1916 Ruth Rookie needs to make up versus these modern card values. Safe to say, staggering price tags for the "Sultan of Swat's" rookie card is now a forgone conclusion, with its associated price tags already steamrolling ahead with tsunami-like force. It is clearly obvious that advanced enthusiasts and investors 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 T206 Honus Wagner is the hobby's "Holy Grail", but it certainly appears that the 1916 Babe Ruth rookie card is finally making a relentless move towards competing with the sanctified Wagner keepsake.

Although not a high-grade example, this aesthetically pleasing SGC 2 offering portrays a majority of the technical attributes desired by even sophisticated collectors. Its sheer existence unequivocally turns back the clock some 105 years to an era when the "Babe" was embarking on the greatest career in our National Pastime's glorious history. Undervalued for quite some time, it is finally achieving its merited recognition, and we cannot even begin to speculate as to the unlimited height of its budding value. Atypically, this museum worthy masterpiece is highlighted by a well-centered "Ruthian" pitching image that reveals only a modest favoritism towards the left edge, with a majority of Ruth rookie cards reflecting skewed images. The imposing Bambino illustration reveals an extremely slender Ruth, an awe-inspiring rookie-era image taken long before Ruth would indulge himself with excessive hot dogs and beer that expanded his waistline at an exponential rate. Even corner wear consistent with a "VG-EX" specimen actually portrays an eye pleasing uniformity, with a few light horizontal wrinkles running through the center of the card (that do not show on the verso's surface) partly responsible for the assessment.

Negligible to say the least, the near-perfect contrast and crystal-clear clarity for the "Sultan of Swat" pose effectively "steals the show", and the blank verso only reveals a diminutive smudge in the upper left quadrant, most likely preventing this card from achieving a "VG" grade consistent with its aesthetics. Regardless of the aforementioned minor flaws, it is the breathtaking Babe Ruth pitching pose that literally transcends time to a bygone era when the Bambino was embarking on the greatest career in MLB history. The cornerstone of virtually any cardboard gathering, no elite collection could possibly be considered complete without a high-grade 1916 Babe Ruth rookie card. There is no evading the fact that an M101-5 subject of the "Babe" stands as one of the ultimate collectibles, comparable even to a T206 Wagner as it relates to hobby significance. Think about the momentous impact Babe Ruth bestowed upon America's Pastime; clearly standing tall as the finest all-around player to ever grace a baseball diamond through BOTH his miraculous pitching and batting feats.

Ruth would have surely been a Hall of Fame hurler had he not jumped from the pitching rubber to the batter's box where he eventually left an indelible mark on the game itself with his colossal round-trippers. Virtually every sophisticated collector covets the opportunity to capture a super eye pleasing M101-5 Ruth rookie card, with this awe-inspiring marvel surely answering the bell. As previously mentioned, synonymous with "The Babe's" tape-measure home runs, price tags for the Babe Ruth M101 Rookie have officially joined other iconic cards in climbing the ladder towards majestic heights. The card hobby has defined a hollowed stature for any rookie card, let alone one that portrays the immortal image of baseball's all-time pinnacle player, and we cannot even begin to imagine the true worth of this revered keepsake a few years down the road. The sale of another "2 GD" example for $331K earlier this spring substantiates the notion that the potential value of any Babe Ruth rookie card resides at an infinite level, and we will defer to you, the sophisticated collector, to ultimately determine the true worth of this extraordinary offering!

MIN BID $50,000

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