February 2019 Winter Premium Auction
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This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on 3/3/2019

Few athletes have dominated their sports the way Barry Bonds did baseball. Even his most ardent critics—not that Barry cared what they thought!—would concede that Bonds was, for all his human faults, one of the game's all-time greats. "Barry is the reincarnation of Ted Williams—with more power," exclaimed Felipe Alou, who managed Bonds for four seasons in San Francisco. Despite playing in an era known for inflated statistics, Bonds stood head and shoulders above his peers in most important offensive categories. He is the first man since the Great Bambino himself to simultaneously hold the sport's record for most career and single season home runs, a feat he accomplished when he surpassed Hank Aaron's 755 on August 7, 2007. Of all of the seven-time NL MVP's impressive stats, however, this one might be the most eye-popping of all: Bonds drew 688 intentional walks during his career, the most ever. That is 86 more than the combined IBBs of the second and third place hitters on the all-time list. Incredible! If you haven't done so recently, we invite you to take a minute to admire Barry's season and career stat lines at baseball-reference.com. His numbers are truly staggering. 

What then is Barry Bonds's key rookie card? This question is still not settled for collectors, as some hobbyists choose his 1986 Fleer Update #14, while others are in the camp of his 1986 Topps Traded #11. There is one Bonds RC, however, which is considered the crown jewel of them all: his 1986 Topps Traded Tiffany issue, a high-end glossy parallel of the aforementioned Topps Traded #11. Only 5,000 of these exclusive boxed sets were produced for '86, which equaled the lowest announced production of any of the Tiffany or Tiffany Traded sets produced from 1984 to 1991. Though that number might sound large to the new generation of collectors, it was a microscopic print run for its era. Sports cards were big business in the '80s, and the major manufacturers including Donruss, Topps, Score, and Fleer kept the presses rolling. Even cards deemed limited in the market, such as the 1989 Upper Deck set, were produced in massive quantities. Griffey's iconic '89 Upper Deck #1 rookie has seen over 100,000 copies graded, and that figure doesn't include the many hundreds of thousands more still out there that have not been submitted for authentication.

The answer is more than clear: the key Bonds rookie card is the 1986 Topps Traded Tiffany card #11, a gorgeous example of which is offered in this lot in the exalted graded of PSA 10 Gem Mint. Mark our words: Barry Bonds will eventually be enshrined in Cooperstown, and his 1986 Topps Traded Tiffany rookie card will one day reclaim its status as the most coveted and valuable baseball rookie card of its period.

Current Bidding
Minimum Bid: $500
Final prices include buyers premium: $2,115
Number Bids: 12
Auction closed on Sunday, March 3, 2019.
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