I will stop short of indicting all game-used dealers of wrong doing - but, collectors need to be aware: Sharks swim in these waters!
What's all this noise? Well, see, I woke up this morning to a tweet from a collecting newbie asking for advice on a "game-used" jersey he is considering buying. The tweet included a photo of the available garment: A 1977 Steve Carlton road jersey. After a quick examination I could confidently advise him against plunking down a few thousand dollars for the jersey.
Here are a few of the problems:
1. White zipper. The Phillies always used metal zippers.
2. Tail tagging.
- Wilson tag used dates to the 1980s.
- Carlton wore a size 46 jersey during this period of his career
3. Collar tagging
- 1977 jerseys contained a silk collar lining with the embroidered name tag attached over it.
Tips for researching on your own:
- Use old cards or Google image searches to help find pictures of uniforms used in a given period.
- Subscribe to game-used forums such as "Game Used Universe" to discuss with experts.
- Refer to final results on online auction sites to find other comparable examples.
- Keep in mind, if the price is too good to be true...it probably is!