CNHI News Service

Sports

February 8, 2013

Rare baseball card tied to family's tragic story

NEWBURYPORT, Mass. — Alex LeBlanc is the owner of what may be the first dated baseball card in history — a rare 1865 mounted photograph of the Brooklyn Atlantics amateur baseball club.

And the youngster, who is still several months short of his fifth birthday,  probably will  never know the significance of it.

His father, Jason LeBlanc, who paid $92,000 for the historic card at a Maine auction  Feb. 6, is hoping the prized collectible will pay major dividends on his son’s future.

And along the way, it may also serve as an opportunity to create a legacy for his late wife who never had the chance to meet her son.

Sarah LeBlanc died in 2008 while giving birth to Alex, who was born with chromosomal deficiencies resulting in multiple developmental defects. The young couple had been married just three years.

Now, Jason LeBlanc has been left to raise his son with the help of support services and the determination to provide Alex the best life possible.

“Alex is my world,” LeBlanc said. “We have a father-son connection unlike anything you’ve ever seen before..”

LeBlanc, a professional trading card investor, started collecting baseball cards as a kid, spending the money he earned on his newspaper route to grow his collection. 

As an adult, he turned his boyhood hobby into an investment business, buying, selling and swapping all kinds of trading cards through an eBay site online. But the Atlantics card is by far the most historic item he’s ever sought to own.

“To be able to own the first baseball card that’s ever been known to exist outside of the Library of Congress was a once-in-a-lifetime-opportunity,” he said.

LeBlanc learned the Brooklyn Atlantics card was coming up for auction a couple months ago. A Maine man had discovered the card inside an old photo album he picked up while antiquing near the Canadian border. He bought the album along with some old Coca-Cola bottles and a couple oak chairs for less than $100 combined.

Text Only
Sports
  • Lindley, Tom.jpg Basketball stars may linger on campus a while longer

    The NBA seems serious about raising its minimum age, which could signal the end of the one-and-done era in college basketball.

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • mfp Hoffner's return 1.jpg Players relent, agree to play for reinstated football coach

    The boycott lasted one day, but the players who refused to practice for the college football coach from Minnesota who was reinstated to the job recently after a 20-month absence said they got their point across: better communication and a continuing significant role for their interim head coach who led the team to one of its best seasons ever in 2013.

    April 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • Lindley, Tom.jpg Golf turns into snooze-fest without celebrities like Tiger and Phil

    The Masters lumbered on last week without two of pro golf's biggest names, Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson, and fans changed the channel. The PGA needs someone with star power if it's going to lure people back to the game.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • mfp Hoffner's return 1.jpg Players protest return of fired Minnesota coach

    The University of Minnesota-Mankato football refused to practice Wednesday afternoon, boycotting the return of Todd Hoffner as head foot ball coach. Players said in a prepared statement that they preferred interim coach Aaron Keen, who led the team to an 11-1 record last season and the second round of the NCAA Division II tournament.

    April 16, 2014 2 Photos

  • Lindley, Tom.jpg Wildcats aren't champs but we're all still watching Calipari

    Kentucky coach John Calipari is a college basketball phenom for his ability to knit together championship-caliber teams of freshmen. How long will Calipari's success last as other coaches catch on?

    April 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • Lindley, Tom.jpg Too much of a good thing at UConn?

    The Connecticut Huskies dominate women's college basketball - which makes for a boring game.

    April 10, 2014 1 Photo

  • Screen Shot 2014-04-09 at 5.06.43 PM.png Spartans mourn passing of 'Princess Lacey'

    Lacey Holsworth, the 8-year-old cancer patient from Michigan who befriended Michigan State forward Adreian Payne and established a bond with his teammates before and during the Spartans’ run to the Elite Eight, died at her home late Tuesday night, her family said.

    April 9, 2014 1 Photo

  • Lindley, Tom.jpg Taking someone out to the ballgame gets expensive

    Families in big-league cities like Boston and New York pay steep prices to catch a baseball game. It's not so expensive everywhere - especially if you're frugal.
     

    April 8, 2014 1 Photo

  • hank_aaron_display_image.jpg VIDEO: Aaron's historic homer

    On the 40th anniversary of Hank Aaron's record-breaking 715th career home run, take a look at the historic moment as it happened.

    April 8, 2014 1 Photo

  • Lindley, Tom.jpg As Final Four tips off, all eyes are on the refs

    Whistles have changed the course of the NCAA tournament. Let's just hope one doesn't decide college basketball's next national champion.

    April 3, 2014 1 Photo

News

Features

Opinion