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  #1  
Old 03-23-2007, 03:12 PM
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Posted By: leon

I have no idea how I will be able to sell computers if I keep getting involved so much but anyway........

I just spoke to Steve...He really wants an end to this whole situation. He is willing to put the 18k into an escrow account and have this card tested. After he makes sure Mark's lawyer is a regular bar member in good standing he will even put it in one with her. Can't blame him for that. The card will be sent to an independent 3rd party paper conservator. It will be tested as to the date of printing. If it is conclusively found to be printed from the 1930 era I will buy it. If it is not conclusive Steve will refund the money. Period. I am not sure if this is good with Mark but this is what Steve is proposing. Steve will work with Mark, or I will be in the middle to help, he doesn't care one way or the other. I am going to lock this thread as there doesn't need to be any more commentary and all 3 parties have my contact info. I will update the board as to the outcome. Not sure it can be too much more fair.... From what I understand from Mark's lawyer, today, he doesn't really want to do this so I am not sure this is feasible. Again, I will update this thread and open it up later. I did want to let folks know what is going on. Sorry I locked the other thread but after 125 posts I am not sure what else could be said....thanks again

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  #2  
Old 03-23-2007, 06:24 PM
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Posted By: leon

I get moderator privileges on this one and want to say a bit more. I have about a half a dozen private emails from folks that have been in the hobby an average of 25 yrs....telling me to be careful on this. If anyone notices my wording above, and what I told Steve, is that the card has to be found to be conclusively printed circa 1930. Ink and cardstock alone won't do that. Corroborating evidence of some type will need to be there. Even with that being said, from the several experts, including SGC, that have examined this card.....I have gathered this is not a good fake. I do want to also thank everyone for looking out for me.....Ya' never know when I might hit a bump in the road so I will take all the help I can get ..take care...

edited spelling

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  #3  
Old 03-24-2007, 09:24 AM
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Posted By: leon

I will give a few updates as we go along. Everyone can form your own opinion about it but I will provide the facts. I don't care to have too much commentary right now, but EVERYONE will have another chance to speak on the subject....Right now I am not sure what more can be accomplished, or said, than what is in the 125 post thread. I spoke with Mark H. and Marshall Fogel last night. Mark thanked me for trying to help. Marshall and I spoke about the way this is being handled and what would be best. I spoke with Steve just now and apprised him of that. Right now Steve is waiting for a call back from a conservator. Steve still wants it to be examined, which is fine...even though the ink and paper alone won't be enough to be definitive....however, if by some miracle, the process used to print the card was only done in the 1930's then that would be big news. Again, I am told by at least 6 extremely knowledgable folks, that have handled the card, that it's not good....but we are still making process towards resolution. Mark is willing to have Steve put the money in an escrow with Mark's lawyer. Steve is ok with this too. So that means Mark will be getting his money back. As I learn more I will update everyone. When the outcome is reached we can open this back up for debate....for now let's get some resolution though. For the record this is not exactly the way I would have done this if I were Steve and I have told Steve this.....However, it is being handled as quickly as possible....thanks much...

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  #4  
Old 03-24-2007, 11:03 AM
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Posted By: leon

You guys can post away....this was never meant to be a private deal between Steve and I...I am only trying to help all concerned parties...if it is real, and someone else wants it, they can buy it....it's only cardboard....thanks

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  #5  
Old 03-24-2007, 11:06 AM
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Posted By: John

Leon, only one question you said if its proven to be real you will but it, if its real why wouldn't the person who bought it in the first place want to keep it?

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  #6  
Old 03-24-2007, 11:09 AM
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Posted By: leon

First of all maybe it was a mistake to lock this thread.....so for that...it's unlocked now. To say it was some private deal was kind of stupid imo. If it was private why would I be posting it? As for Mark keeping the card if it's real, it's still up to him, but he has indicated to me he doesn't want it now. I am totally open to buying it or not, if it can be proven to have been printed in circa 1930. Hope this helps explain....

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  #7  
Old 03-24-2007, 11:23 AM
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Posted By: John

Leon, thanks for answering my question. It was more out of morbid curiosity than anything else. If itís real would be a gem of an item huh?

Also for what its worth I had really no problem with you locking the thread. In fact if you didnít it more than likely would have had another 200 posts, with about 20 posts adding something new or valuable to a discussion that was beat to death IMO.

Leon for the most part you do a pretty good job here, personally I can only think of a few things that you have done in the past that I didnít agree with per say, locking this was not one of them.

Regards,

John

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  #8  
Old 03-24-2007, 11:46 AM
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Posted By: Bob

I don't think either party fared well in this ordeal. Steve Verkman probably lost a lot of potential customers and the buyer has had to agonize over a card which is, to use the term Lew Lipset used in his book, a "cinderella."
I'm with John, I don't see a problem with the 125 post thread locking. It was getting pretty bad. One could argue that it was only the scathing posts which pushed Steve in to a position where the buyer was able to receive a refund but I think the thread degenerated and agree with Barry that enough was enough.
Freedom of speech is dear but it should also be remembered that the purpose of this board is to discuss cards and the hobby in general. Contrast the way this thread spiralled. I think everyone had their say and it appears things have been resolved.
I read a couple of threads about the Demmit and O'Hara variations and other card discussions and it reminded me of how useful and informative this board can be.

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  #9  
Old 03-24-2007, 01:15 PM
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Posted By: Dylan

Leon you mentioned SGC having looked at the card. I read in the other thread that PSA had examined it, but not SGC as well. Has it just been sent off to SGC? If both SGC and PSA deem it as a counterfeit thats pretty conclusive for most people. If the paper and ink testing comes out to show its from around 1930 what would be the next step in conclusively establishing authenticity? Apparently no info has ever been found about this calender in Goudey records, how will anyone be able to verify it was actually produced by the Goudey Gum Company?

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  #10  
Old 03-24-2007, 01:29 PM
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Posted By: leon

I was told by SGC, yesterday, that they had physically looked at this card around 8 mos ago (don't hold me or them to the exact time as they didn't remember it exactly) and they quickly deemed it counterfeit. Another big bullet against the card.....They didn't remember who sent it in....Steve told me this morning that he was unaware that they had ever looked at it....regards

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  #11  
Old 03-24-2007, 02:09 PM
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Posted By: Mike

I'm no lawyer, but I would assume whoever submitted the card to SGC was directly involved in having the card resold without proper disclosure. Isn't that fraud? For example, if I somehow end up with a counterfeit $100 bill that was deemed so by an expert, even if I wasn't the original bad guy, I'm committing a crime if I sell (or spend) the bill without proper disclosure.

Also, doesn't SGC have some responsibility for speaking up when they see a card they have concluded was counterfeit fetching $18k at a major auction?! I would assume they pay some attention to these auctions for marketing purposes.

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  #12  
Old 03-24-2007, 02:23 PM
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Posted By: Joe D.

Leon,

Are you saying that SGC rejected this card after it was won the first time and prior to it being auctioned off for the second time?

edited because the implication of the above leads to a terrible hypothetical.

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  #13  
Old 03-24-2007, 02:28 PM
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Posted By: Bob

Yes, it would be interesting to know the timeline.

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  #14  
Old 03-24-2007, 02:28 PM
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Posted By: leon

I am not sure of the time line, guys....it is all second hand information to me.....

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  #15  
Old 03-24-2007, 02:39 PM
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Posted By: Peter Spaeth

The group of individuals and organizations that believe this card is not authentic reads like a hobby dream team: Mr. Mastro, Mr. Fogel, Mr. Lifson (I think), SGC, PSA, and undisclosed others. At some point common sense dictates accepting this collective wisdom and moving on -- not to mention the clear contractual language compelling acceptance of the buyer's return.

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  #16  
Old 03-24-2007, 02:42 PM
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Posted By: E, Daniel

"One could argue that it was only the scathing posts which pushed Steve in to a position where the buyer was able to receive a refund ".
I absolutely believe had Mark been left to fight this issue out by himself he would be going nowhere fast.

Leon's over-generous gesture (in my opinion) to offer an extra out for both parties is also nothing short of startling - not sure anyone else no matter how cashed up would have taken that step of offering themselves up as a potential buyer for such a questionably important or aesthetically interesting card.

So lastly Leon, I humbly ask why on earth you believe this card to be worth 18K plus???
Cinderella - great. Ruth - fabulous. 18K - ummm, seriously??? I mean the card has no interesting correlation to the player apart from his image, no relation to feats of playing not otherwise captured, or event that was shaping to him or the country, or seemingly anything. Couldn't you buy a gamer bat for that kind of money, something with more apparent reference to the man himself? I just don't get it.


Respectfully



Edited to give Cinderella her correct nomenclature.
Daniel

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  #17  
Old 03-24-2007, 02:53 PM
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Posted By: Dan Bretta

Well this card if it were found to be legitimate wouldn't just be a Cinderella Ruth card which by itself is probably easily an 18K card, but it would be the first Goudey baseball card known also.

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  #18  
Old 03-24-2007, 02:57 PM
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Posted By: E, Daniel

I knew there was a reason my wife calls me idiot .......though still don't like it THAT much for 18K.


Daniel

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  #19  
Old 03-24-2007, 03:03 PM
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Posted By: leon

Correct....the first Goudey baseball card, predating all others by 3 yrs, with Ruth on it.....hello.....

Daniel- I am not too bright but I think the card would/should be worth more if it was real.....and we don't need to belabor that point (real?) much more....

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  #20  
Old 03-24-2007, 03:05 PM
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Posted By: Dan Bretta

Heh. We're only talking hypotheticals anyways since I think we can safely say with 100% assurety that this card is a fake.

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  #21  
Old 03-24-2007, 03:22 PM
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Posted By: T206Collector

...of two old Dilbert comic strips I have on my wall:

COMIC STRIP #1

Dog: I'm going into the sports memorabilia businesss. I've heard that most autographs are forgeries, so my initial investment will be low. Can I interest you in a baseball signed by Moses?

Dilbert: Wow! That's going to be worth something.


COMIC STRIP #2

No. 2

Dilbert: This is the best price I've seen for a baseball autographed by Babe Ruth. But I don't see where the autograph is.

Dog: It gets autographed later tonight.

Dilbert: I'll take this and three of the Honus Wagner cards.



Smarter people, with more baseball card experience than I have bid good money on this card. But to me, if someone offered me the one and only T206 card of Ty Cobb that was issued in 1907, I'd say they were smoking something -- especially if it looked like a black and white photo copy of a card that looked nothing like a T206 card.

Another way of looking at this -- if there is not a single credible grading company or auction house (other than Mr. Verkman) who even have a doubt about the authenticity of this card, doesn't that put into question the quality of the expertise/experience of the people bidding on it? No offense meant to Leon or the other gentlemen with, again, clearly much more experience and expertise than me in this area.

To me, this is the high stakes version of the newbie ebayer bidding $150 on the Wagner reprint in the hopes that it will be a $1,000,000 find.

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  #22  
Old 03-24-2007, 05:10 PM
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Posted By: barrysloate

Paul- I have the same exact Dilbert comic strip- the first one with the ball signed by Moses- on my bulletin board too! It must be at least five years old. Pretty funny!

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  #23  
Old 03-24-2007, 09:48 PM
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Posted By: davidcycleback

I can understand the pain of a consignee having to pay $18,000 for for something he never owned and only made a small sales percentage on. This is why I don't take consignments when I sell.

I've always assumed that the Mastros of the world have outside experts write LOAs for autographs and game used in part for authenticity/promotional reasons, but also liability reasons including to help prevent possible returns. If a lot has already been okayed by an expert, it's already by okayed by an expert.

There are cases where Mastro will accept a return, but, as they've dotted their i's and dotted their t's, it's their call. Note that I don't use Mastro as example to suggest they act poorly in this department. I know of instances where they have graciously given refund for error and, obviously, hiring JSA or PSA/DNA to check out your autograph lots before the auction starts benefits bidders as well.

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Old 03-24-2007, 10:23 PM
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Posted By: JK

I know this could end up being a really callous thing to say, but given SGC's review and rejection of this card, it makes you wonder if the story behind CSA reauctioning the card (a child's death) was even true. I'd hate to think someone would lie about something like that (and I dont mean to imply that Steve did this - in this scenerio, its actually more likely that the original buyer found out it was fake and made up a story so he could return it). Of course, it all depends on the timing.

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Old 03-24-2007, 10:34 PM
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Posted By: Frank Wakefield

Mr. Cycleback, I agree... 18k is a lot of pain.

But who of us would offer that card for sale as genuine if someone approached us and asked us to sell it for them. Just one look, that's all it took... we know it isn't authentic. We wouldn't offer it for sale.

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  #26  
Old 03-24-2007, 11:41 PM
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Posted By: davidcycleback

I consign material and have always felt that if something I consigned turned out to be a fake, I would have to return the money I earned. I wouldn't expect the consignee to be responsible for the entire sales price when he made just a small percentage from it.

For me, I consign stuff that I am confident is authentic, either because it's something I've studied or because I send it with a reputable LOA. For a lay person non-collector, he may be ignorant about what he has and is depending on the auction house's opinion whether it is good (put in auction) or bad (return to owner). He may not be happy hearing he should return the money a year after the auction ended.

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Old 03-25-2007, 07:47 AM
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Posted By: Corey R. Shanus

For the consignor to not know SGC opined the card was a fake, (i) he decided to resell one year later for reasons having nothing to do with the card's authenticity, (ii) consigned the card back to Clean Sweep, (iii) Clean Sweep or someone on its behalf sent the card to SGC, (iv) Clean Sweep, upon being told the card was no good, decided it did not want to disclose that info to the consignor and agreed to still sell it, despite by doing so it was blatantly violating not only its own expressed representations of selling only authentic material but also the express provisions of its guaranty (under which an opinion by a reputable grading service is enough for a card to be deemed no good). Hardly puts Clean Sweep in a very favorable light.

Even if the consignor knew SGC had rejected the card as a fake, he reasonably would be upset about having to refund (most of) the money inasmuch as he had recently purchased the card from a Clean Sweep auction. Because of that, I can't imagine how Clean Sweep could in anyway expect him to be responsible for the portion of the refund owed Mark up to the amount the consignor originally paid for the card the first time it was auctioned. I'm also having a hard time trying to imagine some reasonable scenario that Clean Sweep did not know of SGC's rejection of the card. Even if it was the consignor that sent the card to SGC, what Clean Sweep is saying is that a guy in good faith buys a card, sends it in for authentication, is told it is a fake, and DOESN'T then tell that to the auction house when demanding his money be returned?!

By any logical scenario, I'm struggling to imagine how Clean Sweep did not know of SGC's findings when it sold the card the second time.

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Old 03-25-2007, 08:15 AM
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Posted By: Joe D.

If either one of your possibilities is true (consignor or auction house knowing ahead of time)... take a look at the sales pitch given as to why the card was being auction off.

That would take this to about as low a level as I could possibly imagine. Stomach turning bad.

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  #29  
Old 03-25-2007, 08:20 AM
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Posted By: barrysloate

Nothing good will come out of this sordid affair save the consignor getting his money back and everyone moving on.

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  #30  
Old 03-25-2007, 08:28 AM
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Posted By: Peter Spaeth

The claim that the return guaranty was not in place at the time of the auction was proven incorrect by publicly available facts -- i.e. the web archive. However, it seems to me unless the consignor reveals himself and tells his story or SGC identifies the person who submitted the Ruth (which I would not expect them to do as such relationships are confidential), we can only speculate about the sequence of events here.

That said, I will now indulge in some speculation myself. Here is what I have wondered about since this matter first came to light. Given how much value it would have added, if you were auctioning this item off, wouldn't you have tried to grade/authenticate it? And is it a permissible negative inference from the fact it was not graded/authenticated that someone tried to do so?

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  #31  
Old 03-25-2007, 08:29 AM
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Posted By: leon

I have repeatedly told Steve, that if it was me, I would refund the money...get the card back...then do whatever I need to with the card. That is what should have happened the day Mark contacted Steve the first time, imo. The problem for me is, now when I see Steve's guarantee of a refund for unauthentic items, it holds no weight. That's not so good for business. I was looking at some of his auctions today and saw the guarantee...but didn't believe it.....regards

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Old 03-25-2007, 08:34 AM
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Posted By: Dan Koteles

maybe it was the consignor .Unless anyone thought this situation would end up on the board ,(which most anything major does)it maybe hard to believe that Steve would pull the wool over the eyes of the many here. Maybe he did think he had something special.I didnt pay much into it cause Iam not a big fan of black & white or an arch of stars or any stars in a card for that matter. Whatever the case ,money back guarantee .

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  #33  
Old 03-25-2007, 08:44 AM
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Posted By: Frank Wakefield

I don't mind, usually, if someone is trying to pull the wool over my eyes. It is actually good for me, helps me to pay attention. I do take exception to those rare folks who try to pull the whole sheep over my eyes.

With this "card", I'd never sell it to anyone as being authentic. If it got graded somehow, I'd figure the grader screwed up, and still wouldn't sell it as authentic. That original thread is back on page 2 now, my post was the 8th, and while folks were tippy-toeing around the authenticity of the card I said that I wouldn't give $5 for it. So any of this "I didn't know SGC had looked at it" is nonsense. The matter never gets that far. Most of us would have stayed clear of this card. However I do agree that waiting a year is a long time...

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  #34  
Old 03-25-2007, 09:07 AM
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Posted By: Anonymous

Oldest Retail trick in the Book...Fade the heat as long as possible and hope the problem goes away. Problem is, 18K fake card ain't going away.

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  #35  
Old 03-25-2007, 10:09 AM
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Posted By: dennis

prior to 1933 goudey gums most popular gum was called OH BOY GUM. if a 1930 product it would be a babe ruth oh boy gum calendar.
the goudey co. was sold in late 1931 or early 1932 so the idea for gum cards were the creation,no doubt,of the new owners.
the 1st cards were indian gum.1933
if the item were real there would be many of these out there, and for sure would date 1933/34. ruth items have always been saved so why only 1 seen and only in the last few years?
can anyone tell me an item with babe ruth pictured on it that "is one of a kind"?
why produce only 1 premium and for a product that does not exist? if destroyed lots would have snuck out the back door.
goudey company products were sold to children, calenders are not part of a kids world esp. in the 1920's.




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Old 03-25-2007, 10:20 AM
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Posted By: Joann

This is emerging as increasingly unfortunate all the way around - especially if SGC had looked at it some time ago.

Whoever started out with this card got the money and is gone. It's starting to look and feel like everyone that has been involved with it since then is playing hot potato with the potential loss.

So the first guy is the only winner. Regardless of who knew what, and when, after that first transaction, someone is going to take a loss that maybe doesn't deserve it.

Joann

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Old 03-25-2007, 10:45 AM
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Posted By: Frank Wakefield

Dennis makes a good point that a little gum chewing penny packing kid really would not have been after a calendar.

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Old 03-25-2007, 10:54 AM
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Posted By: Jim Clarke

I think that no matter what the final outcome is.. The Card is now TAINTED. So much bad press on it, will not help it's value for future sales. Even if the card is good,and it came to auction again, I do not think it would fetch 2000.00 IMO. I've been wrong before.. But just voicing my opinion. This is all the way around a lose, lose deal for everyone. It all started with CSA on it right.. That should be the first sign..... JC

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Old 03-25-2007, 11:15 AM
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Posted By: Bob

JC- I don't think it would fetch $100.
tbob

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  #40  
Old 03-25-2007, 11:26 AM
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Default Hopeful conclusion to the 1930 Goudey Ruth saga......

Posted By: Lyman

My friends JC and tBob, I have to respectfully disagree. If in the future the card is demonstrated and generally accepted by the hobby as authentic, it would have enormous historical importance and therefore be valued far higher than the price for which it sold in the CSA auction.

It all hinges on the definition of "good."

Lyman

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  #41  
Old 03-25-2007, 11:36 AM
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Posted By: joe brennan

Just my 2 cents on this whole thing but I think it has been over looked completely.
If Steve refunded the first buyers money after the first sale, why the beef about refunding the money after this sale? It's obvious he gives refunds.

In Rememberance of James W. Brennan Sr. 1924-1982. Dad, thanks for everything you did for me.

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  #42  
Old 03-25-2007, 11:43 AM
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Posted By: dennis

didn't CSA just auction again? AND NOT REFUND

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  #43  
Old 03-25-2007, 02:58 PM
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Posted By: davidcycleback

Here's my problem with having laboratory paper/ink analysis of the card. By profession I deal with identifying, dating and authenticating art, including stuff like Rembrandt and Salvador Dali, and my technical guides on art have been required texts for university courses (I don't say this to boast, but to note that I'm not ignorant on the subject). I'm familiar with the scientific analysis, which if properly done gives effective information.

If someone came to me with a baseball card and asked how to get an independent authenticity opinion, I wouldn't recommend he not send it to Grade A paper lab or the Louvre, but to an expert in baseball cards. A baseball card expert would include someone like Rob Lifson, SGC, PSA, Bill Mastro. If you want two opinions, send it to two baseball cards experts.

I'm not saying lab analysis is a bad idea or that it should not be done, but I would not appoint a lab as the only voice on whether or not a baseball card is authentic. A supplemental voice offering important information?, sure, but not the pre-ordained only voice to drown out all other voices.

My dad was a famous science professor who was literally doing this type of lab analysis before I was born. I asked for his opinion on this subject and, as a scientist/non-collector, he agreed that it appeared to make most sense to send a baseball card to a baseball card expert, as the baseball card expert would be more knowledgeable about baseball cards.

From a common sense standpoint, say you send in a 1968 Topps Nolan Ryan card and the lab says the card dates to the 1930s. You aren't going to say the card is from the 1930s. You're going to say the lab made an error ... Say the laboratory accurately if inexactly says, from analysis of ink and paper, the card dates somewhere from 1940-1970. You aren't going to offer the card on eBay as a 1940-70 Topps Nolan Ryan rookie. You're going to offer it as a 1968 Ryan, while proudly noting that lab analysis says the cardboard and ink is consistent with the 1968 and results show the card isn't modern. Even though the lab results support that you're beloved Ryan card is authentic, you are going to use non-laboratory information to pinpoint date the card-- such as the copyright date and Ryan's 1967 stats on back and that Beckett checklists the card as being from 1968. Here's a case where the lab test was useful and you are glad you had it done. However, that doesn't mean you act brain dead and cut and paste the lab printout into your eBay listing. Because if you list a beautiful authentic untrimmed Ryan's rookie as being from 1940-70, people laugh at you.

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  #44  
Old 03-25-2007, 03:13 PM
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Posted By: Dan Lundrigan

Well put Mr Cycleback and to put it in laymans terms.When your toilet cloggs you call a plumber not an electrician!

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  #45  
Old 03-25-2007, 03:23 PM
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Posted By: dennis

we all (some?)remember the scammer who used vintage ink on vintage paper to sell hall of fame baseball autographs....used to go to library and tear out pages of vintage books to get the right paper era and then use old vintage ink,(his name escapes me) but this item (seeing as only 1 is around) could be that type of scam. and david is 100% correct and the "experts" (and they ARE)have all agreed it's fake...kinda like the 2 guys w/the phoney wagner...that's were this is headed!

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  #46  
Old 03-25-2007, 04:18 PM
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Posted By: barrysloate

David makes an excellent point, one which has concerned me too.

Enough experts have looked at it already, and the consensus is so strong that it is a fake that it seems pointless to pay for further testing. It's as if Steve Verkman is going down with the Titanic and not admitting that it's sinking.

A lab can do some great forensic work but they don't deal with baseball cards. As I said in an earlier post, what would be especially troubling is if the counterfeiter used period paper, ink, and printing methods, and as a result the lab renders a report stating that the card is consistent with what could have been printed in 1930. If that is the case, I predict the two parties will not get this resolved and it will end up in court.

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  #47  
Old 03-25-2007, 05:19 PM
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Posted By: Paul

I suppose if CSA keeps trying, eventually an "expert" will think it's real. It gets a little frustrating to hear about the paper testing, when I'm pretty darn sure a quick check with a microscope will be conclusive proof that it's not authentic. Please buy a digital microscope & post a picture here. Those Digital Blue scopes are inexpensive, & take very nice 60X images.

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  #48  
Old 03-25-2007, 05:37 PM
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Posted By: davidcycleback

I would say if three top experts were disagreeing with three top experts, a lab test would be warranted to find out who's right and who's wrong. If there are six experts and they've come to the same conclusion, there's no need for a lab test.

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  #49  
Old 03-25-2007, 05:38 PM
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Posted By: Corey R. Shanus

As has at this point been pointed out far too many times, from a legal perspective the testing is irrelevant in regard to the buyer's right to have his money refunded. The terms of Clean Sweep's guaranty were met when PSA rendered its letter opining the card is not authentic. So unless Clean Sweep wants to allege PSA was involved in a fraud or collusion of some sort (in which case I'm sure SGC will step in), CASE CLOSED!!! All Clean Sweep is doing by prolonging this travesty is shattering whatever credibility they have left.

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  #50  
Old 03-25-2007, 06:09 PM
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Posted By: barrysloate

That has already been shattered. The next step is damage control.

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