July/August 2021 Auction
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Graded VG 3 by SGC. It was in Canton during the preseason that Young picked up the moniker “Cyclone.” During the 14 weeks he played for Canton, he started 29 games and relieved in two. He was 15-15 for a team that finished last, but struck out 201 batters while walking only 33.6 his final game for Canton was on June 25 at Pastime Park. He threw a no-hitter, and struck out 18 batters without walking a man. A few days later, Young’s contract was purchased by the National League’s Cleveland Spiders for $300, and a few days after that, the Canton ball club’s season ended. Young’s quick ascendancy to the majors was the result of the emergence of the ill-fated Players League, which forced National League teams to dig deep into the minor leagues for any available talent. Young’s weight is listed as ranging from 170 pounds in his younger years to 210 pounds. He pitched his first major-league game on August 6, 1890, against Cap Anson’s Chicago Colts. Before the game, Anson reportedly called Young “just another big farmer.” Young threw a three-hitter, beating the Colts 8-1. His opponent was 41-game winner Bill Hutchison. Young had his first big-league win. He won his next two starts as well. But the Spiders were a seventh-place team that year and finished 44-88, Young ended the season with a record of 9-7, by virtue of pitching and winning both games of a doubleheader on the final day of the season. He recorded a 3.46 earned-run average in that first partial season, striking out 39 and walking 30. He was the only Spider with a winning record. In 1891 Young was the ace of the Spiders staff. The team finished fifth, but still with a losing record, 65-74. Young was a 20-game winner, however — in fact, a 27-game winner. He was 27-22 (2.85) in 55 games, 46 of them as the starter (he worked 43 complete games, throwing 423? innings.) He was still doling out too many bases on balls, walking 140 opponents while striking out 147. Proudly offered is a jaw-dropping 1903 E107 Breisch Williams example of Cy Young that has somehow miraculously survived in VG condition, although it most assuredly appears of a higher grade. The Standard Catalog of Baseball Cards, sums up the scarce E107 set better than any other source: Values shown for EX and NM grades are mostly theoretical, as few cards are known in better than VG condition. Indeed, as of the date of publication, PSA reports less than 125 total examples on record from the entire set, with just 4 examples ever grading at or above the EX 5 level. SGC, on the other hand, has graded precisely 383 examples, only 27 of which have attained EX 5 status or better. Importantly, no examples of Cy Young can be counted among those 27. In fact, Ed Delahanty, John McGraw and the offered Cy Young are the only Hall of Famers to be counted among those 27 superiors, with PSA reporting just a single Rube Waddell and a single Eddie Plank at the EX 5 tier. In short, unless you think Eddie Plank is somehow more important than Cy Young, the presented pasteboard miracle is the single finest E107 Breisch Williams card extant. Interested bidders should also be informed that there exists a total of 9 Cy Young E107s registered at SGC and PSA combined, but none of those 9 have ever surpassed the VG 3 tier, except, this one. Incredibly, it features a nearly immaculate NM/MT image of Denton True in his period lace-up Boston Americans uniform with superb focus and unprecedented contrast (that is the relative difference between light and dark areas) for the issue. The image is particularly noteworthy, as the E107 set features the majority of its major stars and HOFers in street clothes a far cry from the fancy lace-up throwback featured here on Mr. Young. The centering, to continue, is incredibly accurate for the issue, bordering on pristine. Both surfaces are completely 100% free of any stains, toning, wrinkles, creases, or paper loss. In fact, the only convincing EX feature throughout is the uniform wear evident at the corners, while the edges appear marginally superior at EX/MT. A perfectly centered, clean, and imperfection-free example of Cy Young's 1903 E107 Breisch Williams. Breisch Williams... Just saying the name evokes the sublime. As the first major baseball card set issued since the 1880s, its 1-3/8 by 2-5/8 size would set the precedent for the hundreds of candy and tobacco issues that would follow over the course of the next two decades. In this sense the Breisch Williams set is indeed the great grand daddy of all succeeding issues, and the offered Cy Young is the king of them all!
1903 Breisch Williams E107 Cy Young SGC VG 3
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