1952 Topps #311 Mickey Mantle Rookie PSA 5 EX
'52 TOPPS MICK!!! This PSA 5 EX 1952 Topps #311 Mickey Mantle merits a final resting place in any esteemed collection, with its mid-grade stature immediately placing it as a major six-figure plus cardboard collectible. Indeed, 2022 saw some remarkable "5 EX" sales for the Mick's iconic '52 Topps high-number subject, with some formidable "5" pricing points including $204k (Feb); $180k/$156k (May); $156k (July); $138k (Aug); and $146k (Sept). Atypically, a majority of these pricing points just happened to be for SGC graded examples, with PSA graded specimens typically achieving the highest values. Most impressively, the overall hype of the pending sale of the SGC 9.5 GEM MINT '52 Topps Mantle in late August certainly assisted a well-centered SGC 5 example in realizing a record-setting and unfathomable $306k price a few weeks earlier, with the SGC 9.5 ultimately fetching a record-setting $12.6 million.
The manner in which the Mickey Mantle 1952 Topps subject achieved its current mystique may never achieve full resolution, but it's surely here to stay, with only the T206 Honus Wagner surpassing the stature of The Mick's inaugural '52 Topps issue. This cardboard marvel's sudden rise to stardom in the late '80s and early '90s ably assisted the overall spots card market stature, with its incredible pricing points redefining one's perspective for utilizing cardboard heirlooms as viable investment options. For quite some time, and prior to 2013, price tags for the 1952 Topps Mantle subject had remained relatively flat. That concept has truly changed course, with the previously mentioned price tags joined by a $5.2 million private sale for a PSA 9 Mint example, as well as a PSA 8 specimen achieving $2.1 million in Memory Lane's July 2021 auction. Typical with any market commodity, the investment values of valuable baseball cards likewise run in cycles, and the 1952 Topps Mickey Mantle card, dubbed the post-WWII Holy Grail, continues experiencing an amazing pricing surge for all grade levels that have rewritten its overall value.
Mickey Mantle's Goliath-like power obviously contributed to his immense hobby stature, with The Mick blasting an unfathomable 10 plus documented 500 ft.+ round-trippers throughout his spectacular 18-year career. His mammoth blast off of Senators hurler Chuck Stobbs in 1953 at Griffith Stadium ricocheted off of the scoreboard into a neighboring backyard across the street, traveling a record-breaking 565 feet from home plate! The Oklahoma Kid twice crushed horsehide spheres off of Yankee Stadium's right-field facade, and no player will ever hit more tape-measure home runs than the supernatural-like Mantle. No wonder his regal 1952 Topps card is widely regarded as the king of the post-WWII baseball cards, and this solid mid-grade PSA 5 memento suffices as another subject that has retained a vast number of its original redeeming qualities. You can feel Mickey's curious nature as he gazes into an unknown future, unaware that he would soon be embarking on a majestic career that would lead to his immortal Yankee standing. Fine image quality for the iconic Mantle pose, clean white borders and the rich aqua-marine/blue hued background can make any collector skip a beat.
Similar to so many of the known subjects, the legendary pose is somewhat skewed, in this case, strongly favoring the right edge and revealing a modest tilt towards the upper left corner. Fortunately, the top to bottom positioning is near-perfect, and we cannot detect any notable surface flaws on either side, including the absence of surface snow that typically plagues a vast number of the '52 Topps Mantles. Even corner wear consistent with the grade actually offers a super eye pleasing uniformity, the final positive attribute contributing to the mid-grade assessment. It's certainly worth reiterating that pricing points for all '52 Topps Mantles are soaring to stratospheric heights, an unequivocal testament to the unparalleled prestige of this post-war Holy Grail that is the unequivocal cornerstone of our illustrious hobby!
MIN BID $30,000