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    The hottest card in the hobby...

    1952 Topps Mickey Mantle #311 PSA NM 7. "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.

    Certainly the degree of rarity increases exponentially with every step up the condition ladder, and this representation leaves the vast majority of his brethren in the dust, with less then ten percent of submissions climbing higher. We'd take the accolades a step further with the pronouncement that the image is as fine as any example known, with flawlessly rendered color and registration making this the prettiest NM 7 we've seen from "MM 7."


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    Auction Dates
    August, 2017
    19th-20th Saturday-Sunday
    Internet/Mail Bids: 14
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