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1915 E145-2 Cracker Jack Walter Johnson #57 SGC 96 Mint 9....

2010 August Signature Sports Collectibles Auction #7024

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Auction Ended On: Aug 5, 2010
Item Activity: 3 Internet/mail/phone bidders
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Baltimore, MD

1915 E145-2 Cracker Jack Walter Johnson #57 SGC 96 Mint 9. Standing shoulder to shoulder next to the names Cobb, Wagner, and Jackson is the Washington Senators' mound master Walter Johnson. So accomplished was his career that he was one of the first five players to be inducted into Baseball's Hall of Fame in 1936. A Connecticut arms laboratory recorded Walter Johnson's fastball at 134 feet per second. That is equal to ninety-nine miles per hour, a speed the lanky farmboy was somehow able to generate with a smooth sidearmed motion that baffled and certainly terrified opposing batters. In the blink of an eye... it was over. New York Highlanders outfielder Birdie Cree provided his own methodology for handling Johnson's speed: "When you see the arm start forward, swing." It was said that, "...[Johnson was] the most threatening sight I ever saw in the ball field." And this quote comes from the hardened Ty Cobb in 1907 when Walter was a mere rookie "fresh off the farm" as they say. He was a tall and unassuming sight on the mound... until he threw his fastball which was usually over 90 mph. His 3,500+ strikeouts and 417 victories proved the irascible Cobb's words rather prophetic.

Walter Johnson does not appear in many of the "E" class of caramel/ candy card sets of his early career, particularly those issued between 1908 and 1915. He is without a doubt a key name in the E145 Cracker Jack series and card #57 from the 1915 edition is among the top 100 cards of the hobby. The offered example has every qualification sure to entice and satisfy the most condition-conscious hobbyist. It would rank as a triumphant victory in even the most advanced vintage card collections.

This head-turning beauty is one of only three examples at the SGC 96 Mint 9 level. The condition is nothing short of miraculous for a 95-year old, fragile 2-1/4 x 3" piece of paper. The borders are bright; the horizontal centering is barely 1/32" from the utmost in precision. Each corner tip ends as a razor sharp point, a pair of which some may feel are even above the "Mint" assessment. The surfaces are free of stains and scuffing. The colors are vibrant and the print registration is virtually unimprovable. The adulation could go on and on but the picture truly is worth a thousand words. This card is simply a stunning display of quality and the printers' craft made all the more impressive surrounded by the deep black insert of the SGC holder.

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