A 1959 Topps #564 Mickey Mantle All-Star PSA 10

Here’s a card you’re not going to see very often because there are only two 1959 Topps #564 Mickey Mantle All-Star PSA 10 cards in the Pop Report.

When Sotheby’s auctioned this one off in June 2005, it was the only example to earn PSA’s highest grade of Gem Mint 10. Looking at the certification verification information on PSA’s site, it looks like it’s still in the same case, and it’s also not part of any current PSA Registry Sets. And apologies for the jump at the bottom of the scan; that’s how it’s printed in the catalog.

Any guesses as to what it would sell for? Also, if you have a clue about where the other Gem Mint 10 is, let me know; I haven’t found any public sales for either one. Happy collecting!

The 1982 New York City Superstar Baseball Card Show

The following advertisement for the 1982 New York City Superstar Baseball card show is one of the best I’ve ever seen.

It was published in Trader Speaks’ March 1982 issue, and the handwritten style stood out among many mechanical-looking ads. Plus, Monte Irvin and Pee Wee Reese were signees!

I’ll also mention that dealer tables were $85, which is more than many regional shows charge today.

Happy collecting!

1934 Quaker Oats Babe Ruth Advertising Sign

In 1993, Sotheby’s offered this Quaker Oats Babe Ruth Advertising Sign in their Important Baseball Cards and Sports Memorabilia auction. Sign me up for this club!

The sign was described as a multi-color, large (16 by 20 inches) cardboard die-cut stand-up advertising sign showing prices for the Quaker Oats Babe Ruth baseball club.

REA sold an identical, possibly the same, display in the spring of 2008 for $1292; they dated it to 1934 and acknowledged it had been restored.

In the description, REA noted Quaker Oats produced other similar signs for grocery stores. Here’s another one I found online, dated to 1935.

If you’re still interested in joining the Babe Ruth Baseball Club, membership cards pop up for sale from time to time. This one, with an original envelope, sold for $168 in 2023.

More about these Babe Ruth advertising signs and the Baseball Club in future posts!

1965 Topps Battle Five-Cent Proof Wrapper

This is a one-of-a-kind production relic for the five-cent wrapper for the 1965 Topps Battle series. Ex-Topps Vault.

I presume Mastro was the first auction house to sell this item after the consignor acquired it from Topps Vault. They wrote it up as printed on glossy paper, measuring 11-1/8” x 10” with penciled-in editorial notes. 

After a quick Google search and perhaps a few more owners (who knows!), Hake’s Auctions re-sold it in March 2013 for $172. The editorial note on this scan says, “Fill in white shots on blue plate” referring to the white dots above the black square advertising an “Extra Military Emblem In Each Pack.”

While the following 1965 Topps Battle wrapper has a different advertisement on the left-hand side, the white dots were removed.

Hake’s included the following scan of the official COA from the Topps Vault.

Los Angeles Angels 1961 Club Falstaff Brewing Postcard Type Photo

I’ve been getting into baseball postcard collecting lately; here’s one of my favorites, published by the Angels’ radio and TV sponsor, Falstaff Brewing.

I was attracted to this niche after I flipped through Tuff Stuff’s Baseball Card Postcard Collection by Ron Menchine and saw so many interesting items.

Here’s how Menchine described the Angels piece.

One could wonder if this one is really a postcard; it’s ~6 1/4” x 9”, but I’ve seen other postcards about that size. A collector told me it’s likely an unused, team-issued item to which a person would have either typed/written a shipping address or applied a delivery address label.

2001 Barry Bonds Full Home Run Ticket Run

Bonds shattered the single-season HR mark with 73 in 2001, and someone managed to put together a complete run of 61 full tickets from each of his home run games. 

The lot was available for sale in Mastro’s April 2002 catalog, and each was described as being in NM/MT to MT condition.

The keys were home run #60 on September 6 vs. the Diamondbacks, #70, which tied Mark McGwire for the single-season home run mark on October 4 vs. the Astros, #’s 71-72 when he set the new single-season home run mark on October 5 vs. the Dodgers, #73 when he established the new record on the last game of the season on October 6 vs. the Dodgers, and #6 on April 17 vs. the Dodgers which was his 500th career home run.

A lot of the tickets were obtained from season ticket holders by a collector who started the set on the first game of the season.

1991 Topps Desert Shield Soldier Stories

Topps Magazine usually had a section up front called “Fans Notes,” essentially letters to the editor. The first “note” in the Summer 1991 edition was from a reader who read about the Desert Shield cards in the Winter 1991 issue and was frustrated because he had not seen any yet (he was a LCpl). He wrote that he searched and managed to buy a few and thanked the magazine for their contribution. 

The magazine then shared the following incredible story and picture from a GI who was a reserve nurse and Topps photographer:

If you’re interested in getting the issue with this picture in it, here’s the cover: