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    Description

    1952 Topps Mickey Mantle #311 PSA EX-MT 6. "Switch-hitting Mickey is heralded as Joe DiMaggio's successor," begins the text on the back of the most coveted post-war trading card in the hobby, prophetic words from a young copywriter at the young Topps company, best known at the time for Bazooka bubble gum and the Hopalong Cassidy cowboy trading cards first issued in 1950.

    It was Sy Berger, a twenty-eight year old veteran of the Second World War, who envisioned a Topps set dedicated to Major League Baseball, designing the format with his friend Woody Gelman on the kitchen table of his Brooklyn apartment. Berger would later famously hire a garbage boat to dump leftover boxes from the 1952 set into the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of New Jersey to free up warehouse space, a bounty that would today be worth several million dollars. A watery grave would be the fate for most of the high-number series from which the fabled Mantle rookie derives, a victim of slow production and distribution that left this last edition of the set unable to reach most points of sale prior to the end of the baseball season.

    This calculated destruction, paired with the standard Eisenhower-era themes of bicycle spokes and spring-cleaning mothers, has left the balance between supply and demand for the Mick's rookie heavily tipped toward the latter. Today the rare survivors are enjoying a renewed surge of interest, and this fine example is certain to draw legions of suitors. The image area is as fine as examples scraping the top of the population rankings, with light edge and corner wear and a southeastern shift in centering the primary limiting factors. Those looking for elite "eye appeal" at a lower price point than bona fide Mint representations have reason to celebrate.


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    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    August, 2016
    27th-28th Saturday-Sunday
    Internet/Mail Bids: 14
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 2,377

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    The hammer price for my Mantle card significantly exceeded my admittedly conservative estimations, and I couldn't be more pleased.
    George T.,
    Pinetop, AZ
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