1951 Mickey Mantle Hands "Rookie Image" - PSA Type 1 Encapsulated International News Photo - Measures Approx. 7" x 9"
With regard to iconic images, the Type 1 Photo market is "smoking hot" as an abundance of our National Pastime's rookie-era illustrations continue realizing excessive price tags. A perfect example of that notion is a Babe Ruth rookie photo fetching a $174,000 record price, once again validating the unparalleled hype for rookie-era artifacts. While the "Sultan of Swat" continues to dominate the pre-war market, the immortal Mickey Charles Mantle holds a firm grip as the king of the post-WWII hobby, with his cardboard issues and memorabilia highly sought-after by the most advanced enthusiasts. It is no secret that Mickey Mantle's 1951 Bowman rookie baseball card stands as one of the hobby's foremost collectibles, with this inaugural Mantle card reflecting "The Mick" donning his original #6 uniform.
Little did people realize that this powerful rookie from Oklahoma would be embarking on one of the most iconic careers in our National Pastime's glorious history. Luckily for hobbyists, there are thousands of these cards to choose from, more than accommodating the collecting community for an opportunity to own a rookie-era Mantle baseball card. Unfortunately for the most passionate collectors, the prospect of owning a 1951 original rookie photo of the legendary Mantle is a painstaking task, with only a handful of Type I photos from his inaugural campaign available for the taking. One such photo that actually represented his 1951 Rookie card image publicly sold for a staggering $70K+ approximately five years ago BEFORE the photo-market realized its staggering pricing escalation, justifying the desirability to capture one of these scarce 1951 Mantle images.
Presented here just happens to be one of those seldom-surfacing 1951 Mantle rookie images, a super eclectic 7" x 9" PSA Type 1 photo revealing "The Mick's" supernatural-like hands gripping his colossal lumber. Interestingly enough, while there are several known examples for both the 1951 Bowman or 1952 Topps Mantle images, to the best of our knowledge, this museum worthy offering is possibly unique, somehow defying 70 years of potential wear to miraculously retain a majority of its original eye pleasing attributes. Presenting itself in absolutely breathtaking Near-Mint+ condition, its brilliant right-handed batting pose reveals Mantle's vice-like grip near the bat's lower knob, and you can literally feel "The Mick's" unparalleled power as he prepares to wallop another mammoth blast towards the furthest confines of Yankee Stadium. Perfect contrast, immaculate clarity, sharp corners, fine centering, bright white borders and a gleaming/flawless surface complete the amazing obverse side.
The only notable flaw is a light vertical wrinkle running thru Mantle's neck and extending into his Yankee pinstripes jersey, with the verso including the critical International News credit stamp. Indeed, it was these Goliath-like hands that triggered the longest tape-measure home runs in baseball history, at least 10 of which were measured at 500+ feet. Who would have ever thought that when this innocent, yet powerful 19-year-old rookie was called up to the Major Leagues in the Spring of 1951, it would be the advent of an unprecedented career for the ages. The highly celebrated rookie would actually be sent back down to the minors on July 14th due to a horrific slump, being recalled to the Yankees on August 24th after tearing up the AAA league for the Yankees Kansas City club. One of the most obscure 1951 Mickey Mantle photos extant, its unquestionable rarity, 1951 rookie-year origin and outstanding eye appeal all combine to place this world-class keepsake as one of the hobby's most significant photos!
MIN BID $500