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Mickey Mantle cards have
gone through the roof over the past few years and continue to attain record
prices. Few investments in the hobby have matched cards of The Mick. Case in
point, here are some recent prices for high-grade Mantle cards:
1952 Topps Mickey Mantle PSA 8.5---$1,135,250 (November,
1952 Topps Mickey Mantle PSA 8---$660,000 (February,
1951 Bowman Mantle PSA 9---$588,000 (October, 2017)
Which brings us to his 1953
Topps Mantle card. The highest-graded examples seldom change hands. A PSA 9
hasn’t seen the light of day since it sold at sale for nearly $90,000 in
2009. It’s safe to say, however, that a PSA 9 would easily be worth $500,000 or
more today. After all, a PSA 10 example on view at the 2017 National sold
privately for over $1 million.
While all these cards are
rare for their grade and time-proven investments, they still don’t match the rarity
and sheer beauty of this 1953 Topps Uncut Sheet. A true Topps relic, it’s
comprised of 100 cards in 10 strips of 10 cards each that fit perfectly
together to create a complete sheet.
This spectacular vintage
sheet features many Hall of Famers—10 in total—including Mickey Mantle (upper
left corner), Jackie Robinson, Roy Campanella, Eddie Mathews, Red Schoendienst,
Monte Irvin, Johnny Mize, Enos Slaughter, Pee Wee Reese and two Bob Fellers.
As you can see in the
picture, the strips are sliced on a diagonal which is probably why they
survived all these years. You see, the strips were supposed to have been
destroyed by Topps back in 1953. Fortunately, they were discovered behind the
warehouse furnace in the early 1980’s! It’s a fascinating story that was written
about in the August 1984 Baseball Cards magazine right after the find. Please see
picture of the cover. The entire magazine in Mint condition will be included
with the sheet.
I am the original owner of this sheet. I bought it in 1989 directly from Rob
Sevchuk, the card dealer in Hicksville, New York who discovered the find and
framed the sheets himself. Only 3 are known to exist.
The front of this sheet has
been facing a wall in my parents’ house since 1989 and has rarely ever seen the
light of day. I stored it this way intentionally because I didn’t want to
expose the sheet to sunlight or even roomlight in order to preserve the
original colors and keep the strips pristine and of PSA quality.
The colors are rich and
vibrant, as you can imagine, and the cards are in fantastic condition with a
few blemishes here and there. There are tiny
scuffs on some strips, the top strip and second strip have a crease on the
right card (does not affect the Mantle at all) and the 5th strip has a few tiny
holes that do not affect any Hall of Fame player.
The Mantle itself is
phenomenal! It has no creases and appears pack-fresh with vibrant colors. Just
a few speckles. What is perhaps most amazing about the Mantle (aside from
surviving 65 years!) is that there is nearly 1/2 inch of sheet above the Mantle
card. You can even see where the gloss on the Mantle card ends and where the
white of the cardboard sheet above it begins, extending beyond the card’s top
border to the top edge of the sheet.
As previously mentioned, a
picture of one of the sheets appears on the cover of the 1984 Baseball Cards
Magazine. The cover story continues inside about the 1953 uncut sheets, along
with great color pictures of the find, and was written by legendary collector
& dealer Lew Lipset. Here’s what Lew said about the find:
“Topps had hired a carting
company to dispose of their salvage in the Fifties, which task was apparently
carried out diligently. In 1982, however, the original owner died and left the
business to his son. A year later, the son ordered a cleaning of the warehouse
(an infrequent occurrence), and in a corner he found a few dozen strips of 1953
Topps Baseball cards. Though not a collector, the son recognized that the cards
had value and he brought them to the Collectors Exchange in Hicksville, NY
where he later sold the cards. Bob Sevchuk, owner of the Exchange and a
neighbor of mine, brought me the strips to show me and to see if I thought they
were worthy of aBaseball Cardsarticle.”
Mickey Mantle is baseball royalty. Many baseball fans call him their favorite
player and consider him to be the Greatest Baseball Player of All-Time. He’s
inspired generations. Mantle belted 536 home runs, won two batting titles
including the Triple Crown in 1956, and won 3 MVP Awards. He won the World
Series with the Yankees an amazing 7 times, and belted 18 World Series home
runs—a record that will probably never be broken. First ballot Hall of Famer,
Yankee legend and arguably the greatest investment card in the hobby.
It’s a once-in-a-lifetime
opportunity to add a rare 1953 Topps Uncut Sheet to even the most advanced
collection. Shipping is $100 and your uncut
sheet will be well-packed in the frame or sent separately from the frame to
ensure it arrives safe and sound. If you’re also interested in other rare
Mantle cards and Rookie cards, please see my other sales. Thank you very