Johnny Evers and His Three T206 Cards
Here’s a closer look at the three cards of Hall of Famer Johnny Evers in the T206 set
Like many Hall of Famers found in the T206 set, Johnny Evers is found on more than one card. And just like the others, the three aren’t really equals in terms of rarity, prestige, or price.
The second baseman for the Chicago Cubs formed a trio with infielders Joe Tinker and Frank Chance that is still remembered to this day for their double play combination (Tinker to Evers to Chance), referenced in a famous poem, “Baseball’s Sad Lexicon.”
Evers was not an offensive standout but he won the 1914 National League Most Valuable Player Award. He was also clutch in the postseason, helping the Cubs to three World Series titles. While he was only a career .270 hitter, he excelled in the World Series, batting a combined .316 (including a .438 average in his final World Series in that 1914 season).
While Evers has three cards in the T206 tobacco card set, he technically only has two different poses. One of those is a portrait card as shown here. As is the case with other portraits in the set, Evers’ portrait is highly sought after. His card has a solid green background and we get a really nice picture of him.
The other pose features the Hall of Famer wielding a bat and that pose was used on two different cards. While the same pose was used to create both cards, we see that the two pictures are quite different. And consequently, the two are viewed quite differently by collectors.
One of the cards features Evers in a ‘Chicago’ jersey while the other pictures him with ‘Cubs’ on the front instead. That variation was seen in other players, too, including Hall of Fame teammate Joe Tinker, who has four cards in the set.
Even beyond that difference, there’s more here. The backgrounds are different as the Chicago card has a sunset or sunrise while the Cubs card has a blue sky background. There’s a slightly different backdrop in terms of the stadium behind him. Then there are, of course, the slightly different artistic renditions. Most notably, the Chicago jersey card is a slightly more ‘up close’ version as Evers appears larger.
There are three Evers cards but what can we say about them in terms of rarity and price? In other words, which are the better ones to have?
Evers’ Chicago jersey card is generally the least valuable of the three. By far, it certainly appears to be the most common.
PSA has graded more than 1,100 of those to date, which is easily the most of the three Evers cards (and nearly twice as many as the next highest card). Next in terms of perceived rarity would be the portrait, with more than 600 graded. The rarest of the three appears to be the Cubs batting variation of the card with fewer than 500 graded so far.
The Evers Cubs batting card has long been known as the key one in the group. Many long-time collectors have come to identify this one as the key Evers cards. Portraits have really caught on, though, and even though it may not be quite as rare, these days, it often sells for about the same or even more than the Cubs batting card.
Low-grade Chicago batting cards of Evers start around $75 or so. Meanwhile, it’s difficult to get either of the other two variations for much less than $125 these days. There are exceptions to that with very low-grade cards, obviously. But that’s a good starting point in general.