It arrived–again–by armored car. There would be no chances taken with what would most certainly be the world’s most valuable single baseball card should it ever cross the auction block. Just as it did earlier this year, one of the three PSA 10 1952 Topps Mickey Mantle cards is drawing a crowd to History Colorado in Denver. While once again very short, its stay is an unexpected bonus to visitors who come to see one of the best baseball collections in the world outside of the Hall of Fame.
The card, pegged at $10 million or more, was on display for three days inside the Play Ball! exhibit last summer, then went back into a bank vault. Now, it’s back for another short stay–this one ending Sunday, December 30.
Chuck Zander from Longmont, CO, was the first to see the card after it was placed inside a special case on Wednesday.
“I have some friends from New York who came out and saw the exhibit this summer and they told me, ‘You can’t believe what you missed,’” Zander told The Colorado Sun, which covered the card’s return to the museum.
Purchased by Fogel for $121,000 at an auction in 1996, the PSA 10 Mantle originated with one of the hobby’s greatest finds, a cache of virtually untouched 1952 Topps high numbers purchased by Alan “Mr. Mint” Rosen ten years earlier. The other two PSA 10 examples also reside in private collections. Only six unqualified 9s exist, with one selling this year for $2.88 million.
“To watch people line up just to see the card, to see their faces, it means so much to them,” Fogel told The Sun’s Kevin Simpson. “But it’s really what’s behind the card — the legend of Mickey Mantle. Who wouldn’t want to play center field for the New York Yankees and be the Triple Crown-winner in 1956? I’d raise my hand.”
The Mantle card will be gone by Monday but History Colorado has extended the Play Ball exhibit, featuring other historic baseball pieces from Fogel’s collection, to January 6. Among the dozens of items on display are Joe Jackson and Ty Cobb bats, a Joe DiMaggio jersey, a Willie Mays glove and a baseball used in Don Larsen’s 1956 World Series perfect game.