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Friday, April 12, 2013

NPR: Dealer Says He Doctored Most Valuable Baseball Card Ever Sold.

A judge has rejected a plea agreement from the former head of a sports memorabilia auction house who admitted to using shill bidders to drive up prices and to altering the most valuable baseball card ever sold.

William Mastro of Mastro Auctions admitted to doctoring the 1909 Honus Wagner cigarette card that was once owned by hockey great Wayne Gretzky. The card sold for $2.8 million in 2007.

Once again The Great One shows uncanny instincts.

Infinite Joost (Voxter) Posted: April 12, 2013 at 07:00 PM | 12 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: baseball cards, collecting, honus wagner, pirates, scams

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   1. Dan Evensen Posted: April 12, 2013 at 10:44 PM (#4412684)
This is big news in The Hobby, but also not surprising. Most serious collectors have believed the Gretzky Wagner was trimmed for quite some time now.

It's amazing just how much fraud there is in the memorabilia industry. Frankly, I would be suspicious of anything ever owned by Mastro or Barry Halper. That includes the famous Mickey Mantle "blowjob" story, the original of which was in Halper's collection.
   2. hokieneer Posted: April 12, 2013 at 10:52 PM (#4412701)
I have been a collector off and on for 20+ years, but never anything too serious. I have always believed, or at least had strong suspicions, that the card was doctored.

30 for 30 did a 15 min short on the Gretzky Wagner not too long ago.
   3. SY Ruined School Lunches! Posted: April 12, 2013 at 11:10 PM (#4412718)
Wow, what a terrible purchase. The black lotus/mox deck I just bought on Craigslist would ruin this guy.
   4. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: April 12, 2013 at 11:11 PM (#4412720)
This is big news in The Hobby, but also not surprising. Most serious collectors have believed the Gretzky Wagner was trimmed for quite some time now.

It's amazing just how much fraud there is in the memorabilia industry. Frankly, I would be suspicious of anything ever owned by Mastro or Barry Halper. That includes the famous Mickey Mantle "blowjob" story, the original of which was in Halper's collection.


Nobody who's ever had the misfortune to have had dealings with Mastro will be surprised at the news, but cases like this were almost inevitable once the PSA "graded" BS began to sweep the former "hobby" like the Dutch tulip craze.
   5. Pat Rapper's Delight Posted: April 12, 2013 at 11:20 PM (#4412723)
In an ideal world, loss of confidence in PSA would kill the entire slabbing industry.
   6. Ray (RDP) Posted: April 13, 2013 at 05:47 PM (#4413338)
Is there a more corrupt industry than the sports memorabilia industry? Other than government, I mean.
   7. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: April 13, 2013 at 06:11 PM (#4413376)
Is there a more corrupt industry than the sports memorabilia industry?

1. Commercial real estate
2. Investment Banks
3. Hedge Funds
   8. Ray (RDP) Posted: April 13, 2013 at 06:30 PM (#4413393)
4. Religious organizations.
   9. Canker Soriano Posted: April 13, 2013 at 07:16 PM (#4413432)
5. Homeopathic/natural remedies.
   10. booond Posted: April 13, 2013 at 07:41 PM (#4413443)
Is there a more corrupt industry than the sports memorabilia industry?

NCAA/big time college athletics
   11. cardsfanboy Posted: April 13, 2013 at 07:48 PM (#4413445)
Is there a more corrupt industry than the sports memorabilia industry? Other than government, I mean.


Lawyers..not even particularly close. Then most financial institutions etc.
   12. Drexl Spivey Posted: April 13, 2013 at 07:51 PM (#4413446)
By making the card both the most famous and infamous card in the world the guy managed to enhance the value of the card.

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