July 2013
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This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on 8/3/2013
The 1997 Pinnacle Certified Mirror Gold cards tell an interesting story about baseball cards in the late 1990s. For its 1997 product, Select Certified changed its name to Pinnacle Certified, but it continued to produce its popular Mirror cards initiated in 1995 and perfected in 1996, the latter of which remains the most coveted insert set ever produced. The problem was, by late 1997, Pinnacle had found itself on the verge of bankruptcy, and so it made some poor poor business decisions that would ultimately lead to official bankruptcy the following year. In 1997, the first print run of the Pinnacle Certified product sold out so fast that Pinnacle produced an additional two print runs before the product even went live. The product was a hobby exclusive, meaning that it was only available in card stores, and because of its popularity, and because of Pinnacle's increasing financial problems, the company produced an additional and somewhat sketchy 4th and 5th print run before experimenting with a few 1998 products on its way into bankruptcy. Because of these practices, accurate production numbers for its 1997 and 1998 products remain largely unknown. Even though insertion rates for its popular Mirror cards in 1997 were similar to the Mirror insertion rates of 1996, which boasted stated print runs of 30, 45, and 90 for the Mirror Gold, Mirror Blue, and Mirror Red, respectively, many collectors believe that the additional press runs in 1997 created additional Mirror cards that skew the numbers, and there are even rumors that Pinnacle "backdoored" many of the popular Mirror cards to their friends, another practice that likely led to their bankruptcy. If all this is true, however, then one would expect population reports for the 1997 Mirror products to be significantly higher than the pop reports for the 1996 Mirror cards, but that's not exactly the case. Take the offered Derek Jeter Mirror Gold, for example. Looking at the combined population reports from both PSA and BGS, we find a total of 19 Derek Jeters on record from 1997, compared to 14 examples of the famous 1996 Mirror Gold, PSA 10s of which are rumored to be worth anywhere from $20,000 to $25,000. So what's the conclusion? The sad truth is we'll never know for sure. Were there more than 30 of the 1997 Mirror Golds made? Yes, almost certainly. But were 100s made? Probably not. Most collectors believe that the total production number for the 1997 Mirror Gold cards is about 100 or less, which alone makes the card very desirable, despite its notoriety. As the successor to the most popular insert set ever made, however, the card will forever hold a special significance within the hobby, just as its surface will for forever hold is glorious Mirror Gold sheen.
Current Bidding
Minimum Bid: $1
Final prices include buyers premium: $1,504
Number Bids: 21
Auction closed on Saturday, August 3, 2013.
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