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5 Most Expensive Baseball Cards in the World

1909-1911 T206 Honus Wagner

The T206 Honus Wagner card is the most coveted entry on the list. Wagner was a shortstop for the Pittsburgh Pirates, and was one of the first five players inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame. This card was pulled from circulation shortly after approximately 200 made it to market -- like Eddie Plank, some believe Wagner either didn't want to support tobacco use or wanted more money.

A PSA 8 Honus Wagner -- the highest surviving grade of the card -- passed through many hands, including those of hockey star Wayne Gretzky, before reaching Ken Kendrick, owner of the Arizona Diamondbacks baseball team. In 2007, Kendrick purchased a PSA 8 for $2.8 million, the highest recorded price ever paid for a baseball card [source: Jacobs].

In July 2012, the story of the T206 Honus Wagner card took an interesting turn. A federal investigation resulted in several fraud charges against sports memorabilia dealer Mastro Auctions, and led to allegations that they trimmed the edges of the Wagner card purchased by Kendrick to improve its appearance. Some experts say trimming should reduce the card's value, while others say its value might have actually increased by as much as $500,000 [source: O'Keeffee]. The card remains the best-condition T206 Wagner available, plus it has a compelling story. And in this hobby, a good story counts for a lot.