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    A showpiece from Topps' second great edition...

    1953 Topps Baseball Uncut Sheet (Ten Strips of Ten) with Mickey Mantle & Jackie Robinson. Like a budding supermodel, the 1952 Topps set was an undeniable beauty but a bit wobbly on those high heels, thus a victim to early and inevitable stumbles. Today, that unsteady debut is part of the issue's lore, conjuring the romantic notion that somewhere out there, in the briny deep, lies a vast trove of final series cards, brimming with rookie Mantles that had been dismissed as useless dead stock.

    The troubles the Topps company would face in 1953 were primarily filed under a single heading: Bowman. Check out the 1951 Willie Mays contract with Bowman in this auction (or the Mantle example in our archives) and you'll see the reason why. Those covenants with Bowman had promised exclusivity that scores of players had violated through their Topps affiliation. As these legal battles came to a head, it was far from a certainty that the 1953 Topps issue would ever make it to market at all.

    Furthermore, Bowman was embracing the paradigm shift of color photography as Topps commissioned esteemed portrait artist Gerry Dvorak to paint 280 subjects for this sophomore effort. But Topps melded tradition with innovation, the first appearance of a cartoon trivia feature on card backs that would become a staple for years to come.

    Presented is a thrilling relic from that tense season of Topps' infancy, a sheet of 100 cards cut horizontally into ten strips of ten. Eighty different players are showcased within, twenty of them appearing twice. This reconstructed sheet contains card numbers #1 to #85 with card #'s 10, 44, 61, 72 and 81 not represented. The cards are printed front/back to completion. These are the very same cards that were meant to be individually cut into singles and placed into wax packs.

    Hall of Fame immortals abound within this assembly, including Mickey Mantle, Jackie Robinson, Roy Campanella, Bob Feller, Red Schoendienst, Monte Irvin, Johnny Mize, Enos Slaughter, Pee Wee Reese and Eddie Mathews. Others stars include Gil McDougald, Clem Labine and Mike Garcia.

    Overall display value is exceptional with all cards retaining bright and bold color. Upon close inspection there is some light wear including a few scattered wrinkles and creases and some surface loss/scuffs to a small percentage of cards--we suggest viewing our ultra-high-resolution imagery online for the best possible personal evaluation. These minor concerns have done nothing to undermine the visual power of the display, featuring dual-plexiglass panes to allow viewing of both sides. Professionally-framed with museum acrylic on front for crystal-clear clarity and UV protection from sunlight to final dimensions of 45"x32".

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    August, 2020
    29th-30th Saturday-Sunday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 13
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 1,540

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