December 2017 Holiday Premium Auction
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This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on 12/10/2017
Few cards in the modern history of card collecting can match the iconic power of Ken Griffey Jr.'s 1989 Upper Deck Star rookie card. The unforgettable #1 card in Upper Deck's groundbreaking 1989 issue, the success of this card and of the attractive, high quality set with which it was distributed changed the card collecting universe forever. Within a couple of years, Topps would match Upper Deck's efforts in higher quality cardboard, first with an improvement to its flagship brand's card stock in 1991 and then with a new premium brand of its own called Stadium Club. Upper Deck would of course counter-punch with its even higher-end SP brand in 1993, to which Topps then said, "okay, check out these refractor cards," later that year. And the rest is history. No longer would baseball cards be considered old cardboard. They had successfully undergone the transition to an almost extraterrestrial looking plastic-metallic amalgam featuring the increasingly massive athletes who had somehow undergone similar changes.

Indeed, nothing would be the same after the 1990s, and although the iconic 1989 Upper Deck Ken Griffey Jr. rookie card represents a definitive change in course for the larger ship collectively referred to as "the hobby," it is by today's standards a rather simple card, reminiscent of simpler times before the arrival of Chrome and Foil. For this reason, the card will forever remain among the single most iconic and significant cards ever produced, joining the likes of Michael Jordan's 1986 Fleer and Derek Jeter's 1993 SP Foil rookie cards, and even Mickey Mantle's 1952 Topps card and Babe Ruth's 1933 Goudey cards, as emblematic representations of entire generations.

While nowhere near as rare as original Mantle and Ruth cards—PSA and BGS have graded 3,237 and 2,388 Gem Mint Juniors, respectively—an elite group of 115 examples have risen above the masses to be distinguished by Beckett Grading Services highest Pristine 10 grade. Proudly offered here is one of those elite BGS 10 copies. With recent average prices skyrocketing past the $3,000 plateau, including two copies that fetched $7,600 and an astounding $35,100 over the last two years, collectors should not be surprised to see prices continue to scale upward. So long as its BGS 10 Pristine population remains below a few hundred copies, the iconic standing and historical significance of this card have the power to put in on par with, for example, the 1986 Fleer Michael Jordan, which continues to realize prices in the $20,000 to even $30,000 range despite the existence of several hundred top-graded copies.
Current Bidding
Minimum Bid: $1,000
Final prices include buyers premium: $2,880
Number Bids: 7
Auction closed on Sunday, December 10, 2017.
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