The 1952 Topps set is what many mark as the beginning of the era of the modern trading card. Not only did it launch a collecting revolution, it marked the real beginning of the company’s place in American culture.
It’s home to the ’52 Mickey Mantle, the most recognizable and most valuable post-War baseball card, one which has become as much an investment commodity as it has a collector’s item.
The set is notorious among set collectors for its challenging high number series. From Mantle to Jackie Robinson to Eddie Mathews and even some valuable commons, it’s enough to test any collector. Throw in other key cards like Willie Mays, Yogi Berra, and the legendary first card in the set, Andy Pafko, and one can see why the 1952 Topps set is a cornerstone of the hobby.
The Burl’s Sports Vintage set Break of the Week is giving collectors a shot at owning one for a fraction of the cost as it closes out 2016 with its biggest ever–a complete 407-card set of 1952 Topps.
The condition of cards 1-310 in the break are mostly VG to VG-EX, while about 10% of those would qualify as good and 5% better. The high numbers range from Poor to VG-EX, with the majority being poor to good. The grades for the key cards are as follows: #1 Andy Pafko G, #11 Phil Rizzuto VG+, #37 Duke Snider PSA 3 VG, #59 Robin Roberts VG+ SGC 45/3.5, #191 Yogi Berra PSA 2.5/PSA/DNA Auto, #216 Richie Ashburn BVG 5 EX, #261 Willie Mays VG SGC 40/3, #311 Mickey Mantle SGC 20/1.5, #312 Jackie Robinson PSA 1, #314 Roy Campanella PSA 1, #333 Pee Wee Reese PSA 1, #392 Hoyt Wilhelm PSA 3, #400 Bill Dickey PSA 1.5, and #407 Eddie Mathews BVG 1.
The price for this break is set at $80 per spot. This 1952 Topps set is the culmination of a massive run of sets broken this year by Burl’s Sports. This break offers a pretty unique opportunity, as most of the high numbers, even in low-grade condition, retail at $80 or more. In other words, the odds of hitting a card that at least returns value is greater than 25%. The Mantle is valued at about $10,000 in this condition.
Each card in a vintage set break is sold at a fixed price. When all spots are sold–one for each card in the set– a random draw is held online and cards are assigned to participants. Some will get the key cards for a fraction of their value, while others take home vintage commons for set building or trade bait. In order to ensure transparency, the randomization is broadcast live online for all to view.
Burl’s Sports runs two to three set breaks per month. Check out the calendar of upcoming breaks at this link.