Love of the Game Set Builder Auction - Winter, 2023

1. 1951 Bowman #253 Mickey Mantle (HOF RC) - PSA GOOD+ 2.5

Mickey Mantle remains, fifty-four years after his retirement and twenty-eight years after his death, the king of the vintage post- war hobby. He has become the stuff of legend as both a player and among hobbyists as have his cards, all coveted but especially from his earliest major issues. His 1951 rookie card, a year before than his first Topps appearance, is the key to the 1951 Bowman set and an integral and essentially inescapable starting point for any collector of the Yankees great. Presented here in a PSA 2.5 holder, this is an example that shows signs of some youthful handling. All four corners have obvious touches, the lower two corners a bit less so. Centering is trending

toward the top and little to the right as oriented here but is quite typical for the set. There’s a vertical crease in this view, running down from the top border and terminating at the top of his uniform and a less severe one arcing across the lower right corner. Some scuffing is also visible. The registration is exceptional, not a given at all with this card, and it remains bright in appearance. The reverse shows a small wax stain, that’s a hallmark of Bowman due to so many cards being sold in penny packs, presenting nicely and is pretty much perfectly centered. It’s fairly graded and offers an opportunity at acquiring a key rookie card that, not incidentally, kicks off the Bowman high numbers in ‘51.



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