Lot # 76: Outstanding 1955 Topps #164 Roberto Clemente Rookie Card PSA 8 NM-MT

Category: 1950-1959

Starting Bid: $25,000.00

Bids: 22 (Bid History)

Time Left: Auction closed
Lot / Auction Closed

This lot is closed. Bidding is not allowed.

Item was in Auction "Winter Rarities '23 Auction",
which ran from 12/10/2022 12:00 PM to
1/7/2023 7:00 PM

(LOT 76)
Outstanding 1955 Topps #164 Roberto Clemente Rookie Card PSA 8 NM-MT

Along with the exalted 1951 Bowman Mantle & Mays issues, no post-1950s rookie card is more valuable than the highly coveted 1955 Topps Roberto Clemente Rookie, presented here in a breathtaking PSA 8 NM-MT holder. At the time this was written, of the 6,300+ PSA encapsulated examples, only a meager 15 specimens (0.2%) have managed to exceed this museum worthy PSA 8 offering! It is no secret that extremely high-end rookie cards continue to achieve staggering values, with one Mint 9 Clemente actually fetching an extraordinary $1.1 million in the Spring of 2021, and a PSA 8 exceeding the six-figure mark in 2022. Seemingly, no end is in sight for this extraordinary pricing escalation, with the 1955 Clemente inaugural issue one of the hobby's foremost rookie cards paving the way. 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 top to bottom positioning, and only an ever so slight favoritism towards the right edge. Equally impressive are the blinding white borders and right-angled corner tips that show minimal ill effects. A bona fide blazer that aesthetically presents itself at a higher assessment, it proudly stands tall as one of finest looking Clemente rookie cards you will ever come across. The great Roberto Clemente coined the eloquent phrase: "Any time you have an opportunity to make a difference in this world and you don't, then you are wasting your time on Earth", living his sanctified life on earth to the tune of that utterly hallowed quote. Indeed, no truer words were ever spoken by even the most articulate of world philosophers, and it comes with little surprise that the immortal Roberto Clemente would utter such words for he unequivocally represented the embodiment of human valor.

It would be his courageous actions that would tragically claim his life when the aforementioned plane crash in the Atlantic in 1972. He was loved by so many, and even one of his closest friends, Pirates catcher Manny Sanguillén, missed Clemente's memorial service, choosing instead to dive into the frigid waters of the Atlantic Ocean in an effort to find his beloved teammate. It therefore comes with bittersweet irony that for all of Roberto Clemente's world-class achievements, this Hall of Famer's iconic legacy will forever be linked to his heroic death that stands as a defining testament for Clemente's legendary stature. That said, we cannot imagine a finer testament for the unparalleled Clemente than this extraordinary PSA 8 NM-MT Topps rookie card offering that exhibits the virtually impossible to find near-perfect centering!

MIN BID $25,000

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