Sunday, September 02, 2007
Latin American Baseball cards from the 1940's to 1950's are rare and extremely difficult to find. Oftentimes, they were made of lightweight thin paper stock instead of stiffer cardboard. They were also glued into scrap books or albums. This was the most popular means of collecting cards in Latin America. For many years Topps Company made a distributed Spanish versions of their Baseball cards in Venezuela, but they consisted of only MLB players and, often, resembled the version sold in America. If you were a fan of the local leagues that played throughout the region you were out of luck. Very few sets were available for the local public.
Unfortunately, the lack of cards for these leagues meant the lack of cards for American Negro League players. Many Negro League players from America came to Mexico, Cuba and other countries to play Baseball. Cool Papa Bell, Josh Gibson, Satchel Paige and others were stars down south.
Fortunately, the age of the internet and eBay has helped us discover once unknown sets. Recently, a traveler through Mexico was rummaging through a curio shop when he stumbled upon this once unknown set. (At least I can't find any reference of this set anywhere)
The photos above and below are from the Album de Beisbol (Profesional) Liga Mexicana XXI Temporada 1945. Check out the once unknown card of Hall of Famer Ray Dandridge above. There are some action photos below.
I stumbled upon this auction several days after it opened, but it was already priced well above my budget. Not surprisingly, it closed at price any auction house would be proud of. It sold for $2,450.00.
eBay Auction Link: Album de Beisbol (Profesional) Liga Mexicana XXI Temporada 1945: