Pieced together over decades of collecting, the world’s finest collection of Willie Mays baseball cards is about to hit the auction block.
Dubbed, the “Mays Fan Club Collection,” it includes some of the rarest Mays cards in existence with many in the highest possible grades. The compilation arguably resides as the finest group of individual player lots ever offered to the public.
The 282-card collection has long been ranked as the best on PSA’s Set Registry with a 92.16 percent completion rate and a weighted GPA of 8.07.
The owner, who left no stone unturned in his quest to acquire the best examples of each card, is offering the collection in Memory Lane Inc.’s 2019 Spring Break Auction, which is set to open March 16 and closes April 6. Most of the cards will be offered individually with some small group lots also included.
A remarkable 214 of the 282 cards contained in this Master Set are the highest graded examples (76 percent), and of those, 62 or 20 percent are “1-of-1s” and the sole finest graded specimens. The collection includes 70 Gem Mint 10s and 102 Mint 9s.
While the collection includes NM/MT (8) graded examples of Mays’ rookie card and valuable 1952 Topps issue, it is more important for the inclusion of numerous “white whales” that rarely surface for sale. Included in that group are a 1961 Topps Dice Game card (PSA 6), 1952 Coca-Cola Playing Tips test issue (PSA 6) and a 1954 Stahl-Meyer Franks card that stands as the only PSA 9 copy of any Stahl-Meyer card from 1953-1955.
The Mays section of Memory Lane’s catalog leads off with a 27-card basic set that includes all of the primary Bowman (1951, ’52, ’54, ’55) and Topps (1952–1973) cards issued during his career as well as a 1963 Fleer. The group includes seven cards graded PSA 10 and 16 rated 9 with 17 of the cards ranking as the highest graded examples on the PSA Registry. The 27 cards will be offered both as a group and via individual lots with the highest final bid determining the method of sale.
Other challenging Mays issues that will be offered in the auction include: 1953-55 Howard Photo Services postcards, 1955 All-American Sports Club, 1955 Robert Gould, 1958 Hires Root Beer Test, 1958 Packard Bell, 1959 Home Run Derby, 1959 Bazooka, 1970 Dayton Daily News and numerous Topps Venezuelan and high-grade O-Pee-Chee cards.
Information on each lot in the collection will be available inside Memory Lane’s Spring Break Auction catalog, which will include more than 1,000 lots in all. To request a physical copy of the catalog, contact Memory Lane at www.memorylaneinc.com or by calling 877-606-5263.