When Mickey Mantle made his debut with the Yankees, writer Leonard Schecter said of him, “He has a face as open as the part of America that he came from.” So there he was, a kid of nineteen, already heralded as the second coming of Babe Ruth, or at the very least the legitimate successor to Joe DiMaggio. “When he hits the ball, it even sounds different,” they said about him. “He’s got it in his body to be great,” added grizzled manager Casey Stengel, who had been around long enough to qualify as an expert. Such expectations are hard to measure up to, but Mantle did, and then some. At the time of this cards release in 1952 however, Mantle’s future was uncertain. He started slow with the Yankees, even finding himself farmed to Kansas City for fine tuning at one point a year earlier. However, by the mid-1950’s, when the tape-measure homers boomed off his bat and the RBI and runs scored accumulated, Mantle’s destiny took shape.
Today, Mantle’s 1952 Topps issue is royalty in the field of card collecting. It is the most recognized and coveted post-war issued baseball card, and next to the T206 Honus Wagner, stands as the icon of the hobby. The offered example is in Excellent condition with a 60 rating by the experts at SGC. The skyward portrait of the young slugger is nicely centered and maintains outstanding color. Clean borders, crease free surfaces, and mildly rounded corners combine for a wonderful overall appearance. An incredible middle grade example that is only twice removed from its original owner.