I was listening to the Dodgers-Pirates game last night when Charlie Steiner mentioned that a Honus Wagner T206 baseball card sold yesterday for a cool $2.2 million. The card is so valuable because Wagner was an anti-tobacco advocate in the early twentieth century, a time when such sentiments were less common than they are today. After several hundred were produced the baseball legend legend forced the company to cease and desist. Tobacco cards were common at the time, and not just for baseball; I have written about them a bit before. Ironically, Wagner’s actions are what make his card rare and valuable today.
One of the reasons I love baseball on the radio is because the audio incarnation of the game lends itself to digression. Though I have the television option on my MLBTV package, I end up listening to the radio broadcast more often than not. It was a great piece of serendipity that Los Angeles was playing Pittsburgh the day the Wagner card was sold. Discussing the card led Steiner and radio battery-mate Rick Monday into a discussion of who was the best Pirate of all time. The two quickly got it down to Wagner and Roberto Clemente. It’s difficult to argue with that, and it’s so good to see baseball back.
Enjoy your Sunday.