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1887 N690 Kalamazoo Bats Jack "Candy" Nelson, Mets - "1 of 1"
Starting Bid - $5,000, Sold For - $11,750
Graded VG/EX 50 by SGC. “1 of 1"! Exceedingly rare New York American Association player Kalamazoo Bats card of Mets short stop "Candy" Nelson and the only N690 Kalamazoo Bat of Nelson ever graded by SGC or PSA. This is an extraordinary high-grade example and even among New York Mets Kalamazoo Bats, at a glance this card is an obvious extreme rarity. We've never seen another example of Nelson ever offered or even illustrated in books or catalogs over the years. This card (along with the two other examples offered in this auction) were found in upstate New York where (probably not coincidently) a few other New York Kalamazoo Bats cards have surfaced over the years. All Mets players are extremely rare in the Kalamazoo Bats set. In fact, they may actually be even rarer than Kalamazoo Bats New York Giants players. There were no Mets players in the legendary Kalamazoo Bats portrait find of 1987. (All were Giants and Philadelphia players.) In thirty-eight years we have seen fewer than ten Mets player Kalamazoo Bats, and we would be surprised if more than thirty examples in total were even known to exist. Among nineteenth-century sample cards, few issues approach the rarity (or the majestic presence) of Mets Kalamazoo Bats. Most consider the Mets a set unto themselves, distinct from the Giants. Each Mets player is pictured with no hat (Giant players are all wearing hats) and players are pictured in portraits identical to those that appear in the rare "Spotted Ties" subset of the N172 Old Judge set. This is a tremendous example of an incredible early rarity, and one of the finest in terms of condition of the few Mets Kalamazoo Bats we have ever seen or heard of. Very clean and strong in all respects, with just the slightest hint of corner wear, and superb photo quality. Strong Excellent condition downgraded by SGC due to a tiny surface chip in the extreme upper right corner, a tiny corner crease in the lower right, and very minor soiling on the reverse, all of which have little or no impact on the outstanding Excellent appearance this card displays. Reserve $5,000. Estimate (open). SOLD FOR $11,750
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