Comments: In May of 2005, I pulled
off the biggest card purchase of my life up to that point. The
REA auction closed and I won two cards - this Radbourne and a
N-162 Goodwin Champions Keefe SGC 60. After the auction closed
I called and requested signature receipt. I received a tracking
number and nervously waited for the cards to arrive. In complete
excitement, I waited and waited for the package to arrive and
check the Track & Confirm website hourly. Eventually my anticipation
was rewarded when the tracking number kicked back "Delivered".
How? I wasn't home and the package required a signature. Would
you believe the cards were shipped in a FedEx box overnight and
left between the screen and front door by a FedEx courier? I was
at work and unable to accept the box. This was an emergency. I
jumped in the car and drove home to the front door. I was very
lucky nobody took off with it. The package was there - in between
the screen door and regular door - for all to see, and all to
steal. Luckily nobody took the chance.
I love the handlebar mustache and learned a lot about Hoss after
picking up this card. All the stories about him "flippin the bird"
are pretty cool and make me wish I could go back in time to have
a beer with the man. This card will always be in my top ten.
In this instance, the photographer captured Radbourn in his Boston
uniform, sitting in a casual posture that reveals Radbourn's confidence
as clearly as it does his perfectly maintained handlebar mustache.
It is also by far the rarest and most desirable of the six different
cards in the set featuring Radbourn, and one of the rarest of
all N172 Hall of Famer poses. This is an exceptional specimen
in all respects with extraordinary photo quality and contrast.
The Hall of Famer's image is crisp, the contrast is superb and
the centering is not unflattering. All four corners exhibit nominal
wear (heaviest at the lower left) that does not diminish the piece's
considerable visual impact. The blank reverse properly complements
the card's character and is suitably clean. This is an exceedingly
desirable portrayal of the legendary figure, and one of the few
portrait-configuration examples of its type known to exist; just
one Radbourn Old Judge of any pose has achieved a higher SGC rating.
Excellent condition, in the strictest technical sense, but highlighted
by a luminous, stellar likeness. A tiny surface chip in the lower
left corner of the blank reverse keeps this beauty from a higher
grade. The image really "pops" on this extremely impressive card.
One of the best examples of this significant key Old Judge Hall
of Famer rarity in the country.