Lot # 573: Spectacular 1955 Topps #164 Roberto Clemente Rookie Card (SGC NM/MT+ 92/8.5) - “1 of 2: Only 1 SGC Copy Graded Higher!

Category: 1950-1959

Starting Bid: $17,500.00

Bids: 14 (Bid History)

Time Left: Auction closed
Lot / Auction Closed

This lot is closed. Bidding is not allowed.

Item was in Auction "Spring 2017 Holy Grail Rarities Auction",
which ran from 4/21/2017 4:00 PM to
5/6/2017 7:00 PM

(LOT 573)
Spectacular 1955 Topps #164 Roberto Clemente Rookie Card (SGC NM/MT+ 92/8.5) - "1 of 2: Only 1 SGC Copy Graded Higher!

CLEMENTE ROOKIE!!!... Along with the exalted 1951 Bowman Mantle & Mays issues, no post-1950's rookie card is more valuable than the highly coveted 1955 Topps Roberto Clemente Rookie card, presented here in a breathtaking SGC 92/8.5 NM/MT+ holder. One of only 2 SGC specimens at this hallowed plateau, only a SOLE SGC example has managed to achieve a higher assessment! Its rarity for the grade is further substantiated by PSA who currently list only 3 copies at the ever-elusive 8.5 tier, and a microscopic-like 0.3% of the nearly 4,400 encapsulated Clemente rookies graded higher. It is no secret that extremely high-end rookie cards continue to achieve staggering values, with one "Mint 9" Clemente actually realizing an incredible $486K price tag.

No end is seemingly in sight for this extraordinary pricing escalation with the 1955 Clemente rookie one of the hobby's foremost rookie issues paving the way; even besting the values of the immortal Henry Aaron's inaugural card. This comes as little surprise to many advanced enthusiasts since Roberto Clemente's legendary status amongst the Hispanic baseball community is synonymous with the magnitude of Jackie Robinson's legacy to all African Americans. Clemente's accomplishments include a .317 lifetime batting average, 3,000 career hits, the 1966 regular season MVP award, four batting titles, 12 consecutive gold glove awards, and if that isn't enough, in 1971 he won the World Series MVP when he dominated the Baltimore Orioles via his stellar hitting and fielding prowess.

Yet, as is the case with the immortal Lou Gehrig, he will always be best remembered for his tragic death when, after the 1972 season, his plane crashed carrying supplies to assist earthquake victims in Nicaragua. His legacy far surpasses most post-WWII Cooperstown inductees, with his iconic 1955 Topps issue on virtually every world-class collector's bucket list. Similar to Clemente's uncanny playing superiority is this remarkable offering that appears as if it has just been pulled from a 1955 wax pack! A glistening surface includes the legendary portrait and batting poses that both exhibit crystal clear clarity and sparkling hues.

The highlight of this card is the atypical near-perfect centering that reflects virtually 50/50 "side-to-side" positioning, and approximately 55/45 "top-to-bottom" placement. Equally impressive just may be the blinding white borders and blistering sharp corner tips that show zero ill effects from 62-years of potential wear. We have scoured both sides of this museum worthy masterpiece and the only notable surface imperfection is the microscopic-like print dot located directly above Clemente's right shoulder. A bona-fide "blazer", this museum worthy masterpiece merits the highest accolades from the most sophisticated cardboard enthusiast, proudly standing tall as one of Clemente's finest preserved rookie cards extant!

MIN BID $17,500

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