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Title: Wheaties Premium Photos
Size: 5″ by 7″
Number in Set: 9 in the Standard Catalog, but now it’s understood to be 12
There’s a lot of mystery around the set known as the 1951 Wheaties Premiums. Some believe that after an absence from making cards for a decade, General Mills test marketed these cards but pulled them since they couldn’t come to terms with Al Rosen or Mickey Mantle. Hence, their scarcity. Folks believe this since the 1952 Wheaties cards of Stan Musial, Roy Campanella, Bob Feller, Bob Lemon, Yogi Berra, and Richie Ashburn used the same exact photos.
However, others argue that the photos are inconsistent with 1951-era pictures and wonder why Wheaties would include a relatively unknown rookie in Mantle. And the inclusion of Cleveland Indians players made more sense after 1954 when they made the World Series. Arguments continue from both perspectives.
Nevertheless, the set exists, and I’ll continue to refer to it as a 1951 set for consistency on the blog.
Each card (photo) has a black and white player picture within a white frame. Beneath the picture is the player’s name in all capital black letters. The lower right corner has the alpha-numeric code ‘A8491’ followed by a letter unique to the player. The backs are blank.
The Standard Catalog only listed cards A, C, D, E, F, G, H, J, and K. But in the past decade, B, I, and L have been discovered.
The set’s key card belongs to Mickey Mantle, but the more recently discovered Rizzuto, Hogan, and Kramer cards will be much more challenging for collectors to find.
A Stan Musial
B Phil Rizzuto
C Richie Ashburn
D Bob Feller
E Al Rosen
F Larry (Yogi) Berra
G Mickey Mantle
H Betty Schalow (ice skater)
I Ben Hogan (golf)
J Bob Lemon
K Roy Campanella
L Jack Kramer (tennis)