A hoard of thousands Mickey Mantle, Joe DiMaggio and Ted Williams signed photos have flooded the market over the last few years. All authenticated by Global Authentication Inc., with COAs signed by former GAI executive Mike Baker.
The hoard has driven down prices on these legendary Baseball Hall of Famers by 50-percent or more, and it's not rare to find one for well under $50.
Every baseball expert we asked is emphatic that they're forgeries. And they've had that same opinion since the hoard came out of Florida in 2008.
If the experts are right—and I don't doubt that they are—not only are thousands of collectors stuck with these worthless photos. Thousands more have unfairly suffered a catastrophic drop in the value of their genuine Mantles, DiMaggios and Williams due to the flood of fakes.
Why Do So Many Think They're Forgeries? Let's find out!
If you're a regular collector like me, it's hard to tell good Mantles from decent forgeries. DiMaggios and Williams are easier, but I'd never buy without an expert opinion. So I thought it would be a great education for those experienced in these autographs—experts and experienced collectors—to show us why they're so widely considered forgeries.
I've included a few of the GAI authenticated photos to start with. Feel free to upload more. Ask questions, share your knowledge...and help make collecting these Hall of Famers safer for everyone!
Here is a mass-produced set of Mantle and Williams forgeries.
GAI "authenticated" thousands of forgeries before they went bankrupt in 2009.
I haven't seen one of these in a long time. It's your typical Mickey Mantle/Ted Williams set of forgeries with the GAI cert (the Mike Baker Collection). But this one is a bit different, as it also includes the Nicholas Burczyk sticker COA on the back. Usually, we only see these with the GAI cert.
Honestly, I don't think I have ever seen one of these comics with an authentic signature. This and the record album seem to be forger's favorites.
Sorry to hear it Frank, but the good news is you are learning and growing. I don't know any autograph collectors who were not burned at one time or another. Sadly, it is the dues we sometimes pay. The goal however, it to pay dues as infrequently as possible!
Growing and out some cash. Why doesn't ebay do something about Global. They should ban their COA items. My guess is that they pay Ebay some cash.
Another GAI certed Mickey Mantle forgery with the cert signed from Mike Baker (The Mike Baker Collection). This crap will be infecting our hobby long after we pass away. Disgusting!!!
Here's another piece of crap Mantle forgery. Notice the Stat Authentic hologram on the bottom right. As we all know, Stat Authentic is on Ebay's Banned COA list.
The seller writes "100% guaranteed to pass JSA or PSA DNA authentication or your money back!" This crap would never pass PSA or JSA!!!!
Not to defend the seller, but maybe they didn't know. I have 1000 feedback on ebay and I didn't know it was this bad. Why doesn't ebay ban Global authentication on their site if it is this bad?
Again, another set of Mantle and DiMaggio forgeries certed by GAI (The Mike Baker Collection as I call it).