Monday, March 28, 2011

1948-49 Leaf #75 Dom DiMaggio, aka "The One That Got Away"

On Sunday, blogger Steve (of  White Sox Cards) wrote about a "Well Loved Card That Was Almost Mine." It turned out to be 1948-49 Leaf #59, Luke Appling, no doubt a precious commodity for Chicago's South Side collectors.

Real nickname: "Luscious Luke"

Not many collect those old Leafs, so it'll help to know that its checklist includes a ton of short-printed, really expensive cards. My #5 Virgil Trucks profile shows one of them and it took three trimmed edges to make the card affordable at $20.

Luke isn't just one of better Leaf cards; it also serves a personal connection, first made at a show back in 1999, when I found a $5 box with two beat-up players in it, #59 Luke Appling and #75 Dom DiMaggio.

"My" card was in much worse shape

Having no Leafs in my own collection, this was a perfect chance to pick up my first. Both guys played well during their careers, but Appling made the HOF, so I ultimately chose him over "The Little Professor." Upon returning home, I compared their book values, figuring Appling would have an edge. Both were low-grade, so probably couldn't be resold for more--so I thought.

Short, sad-for-me story: Appling valued around $50 in NM, making $5 a decent price, but DiMaggio, being a short-print, booked for over $500! I blinked and re-checked it several times. The dealer had dropped a big-time card in a small-money box and it went right by me. To quote Charlie Brown...

Like all good one-that-got-away stories, I went back to the same dealer at ensuing shows, but that DiMaggio was long gone from his $5 box and you'll never find one for that now. They all live inside PSA holders instead! Thanks to Steve for bringing back a singular memory. :-)


Steve Gierman said...

Glad I could a memory.

Steve Gierman said...

left the word "jog" out of that. Oops.

Glad I could "jog" a memory.

Matthew Glidden said...

Me too! Why fish if you can't "almost catch" a 50-pounder, right?