MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Someone stole hundreds of vintage sports trading cards from a business in St. Paul.
The Ninth Inning on Selby Avenue is an office, but it’s not open for walk-in business. There is also no sign out front advertising.
Owner Bob Krawetz thinks professionals are behind the job that stole his livelihood.
He was at the office minutes after the alarm company called early Thursday morning.
“They took the window out, so they were prepared, and it was cased definitely,” Krawetz said. “I don’t know who was in here to know where I store the cards.”
Krawetz kept the high-priced cards in a filing cabinet in a room in the office.
“Every drawer was full, with up to six boxes holding 65 cards a box,” Krawetz said.
He had premier vintage cards of baseball greats, including Babe Ruth, Joe DiMaggio and Harmon Killebrew. He also had notable cards from other sports, like Terry Bradshaw’s NFL rookie card.
“I have been doing this for a long time,” Krawetz said. “People know that I deal in high-end cards.”
The theft delivered a blow to the veteran sports memorabilia dealer, who has been in the business for 30 years.
“I’m upset, I’m depressed, I’m aggravated,” Krawetz said. “I don’t know what to do next. I mean, I’m trying to put everything back together.”
Insurance may cover some of the loss, which is estimated at $200,000 — but he’ll have to account for every card.
Once graded in plastic, a card has a serial number so a sale can be traced. If taken off, it loses value and there’s no way to track the card.
“You work your tail off all these years and somebody snatches it away from you in 60 seconds, not caring,” Krawetz said.
St. Paul police are trying to determine if this burglary is connected to three others at sports memorabilia shops around the Twin Cities.