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Ty Cobb
(b. December 18, 1886 - d. July 17, 1961)
The first man elected to the Hall of Fame, Cobb received more votes than any of his counterparts. Intense beyond belief, the daring Cobb epitomized the "scientific" style of play that dominated baseball in the first quarter of the 20th century. In 23 of his 24 seasons Cobb hit over the .320 mark, and his lifetime .366 average is still the all-time best. He led the AL in batting average 12 seasons. The "Georgia Peach's" 2,245 runs scored are the second most in history (1st- Rickey Henderson), while his 4,190 hits and 892 stolen bases rank second and fourth respectively.
Inducted in 1936
1910 T-206 American Beauty Ty Cobb SGC 10 PR
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Comments: In April, 2000 the collection needed a Cobb. I wasn't in a position to purchase an item contemporary to his career so I decided on the 1973 Topps #475 as a good placeholder. The PSA 8 I purchased was later upgraded to a MINT example in 2003. In June, 2005 I decided to finally replace the tribute with a T206 red background. I thought it was the card to get of Ty Cobb. But, I wanted it to be special. Around the same time I learned the T206 issue was available with many different back options (obviously, The Monster by XXX was missing from my library). American Beauty cigarettes was an option when I found a raw example on eBay example offered by Frank Ward at a pretty good price. The name American Beauty and a red background T206 Cobb were a perfect match. So, I pulled the trigger and won the auction. In the bottom border somebody had written Cobb in blue pen and now only the "Co" is faintly visible. Shortly thereafter, it was submitted to PSA but they wouldn't slab the card due to some "restoration" marks. Somebody had crulely tried to cover up the creases/wrinkles with red paint in a few spots on the card front. I contacted a hobby friend who helped me bring back the card to its original condition by removing the paint fragments. It was subsequently graded by SGC as POOR 10. I love the card, the story, but I kept my eyes peeled for an upgrade and an opportunity came up in March, 2010 via the Network54 baseball card forum. The card wasn't centered but the color was sharp, the corners nice and no wrinkles or creases. It was graded VG by SGC. I purchased the card. Since 2005, I've only seen two American Beauty Cobbs offered for sale and I acquired both. And, I don't know of any other examples in any private collection. I thought I would sell the SGC 10 but can't do it because of the centering on the SGC 40 example. In some ways I prefer the SGC 10, in other ways I prefer the SGC 40 example and therefore can't justify selling either card until I find a clear upgrade to both. The quest continues….

UPDATE: I received an offer I couldn't refuse in September, 2013 and sold the SGC 40 example.

Card Details Below:  
Year(s): 1909
ACC Set Designation: T206
Set Name: American Beauty Cigarettes
Country: United States
Description: The nearly 525 cards which make up the T206 set are the most popular of the early tobacco issues. Players are depicted in color lithographs surrounded by a white border. The player's last name on the -7/16" X 2-5/8" cards appears at the bottom with the city and league, when a city had more than one team. Backs contain an ad for one of 16 brands of cigarettes. There are 389 major leaguer cards and 134 minor leaguer cards in the set, but with front/back varieties the number of potentially different cards runs into the thousands. The set features many expensive cards including a number of pose and/or team variations.
Example American Beauty Cigarettes Box