CSG-certified Mickey Mantle Card Expected to Sell for Over $1 Million in Upcoming Auction

Posted on 11/23/2022

A rare opportunity for collectors, SCP Auctions is offering two of the world’s most coveted baseball cards, both graded by CSG.

Two examples of the iconic 1952 Topps #311 Mickey Mantle card that were recently authenticated and graded by Certified Sports Guaranty® (CSG®) are now being offered to the public. The cards are at center stage in the 2022 Fall Premier Auction presented by SCP Auctions, a California-based leader in sports collectibles. Bidding, which is now underway, concludes on December 10, 2022.

1952 Topps #311 Mickey Mantle Type 1 card graded CSG 8
Click images to enlarge.

One of the two cards is graded CSG 8, making it the most valuable card that CSG has certified since it launched in early 2021. Fewer than 20 are graded higher out of about 2,000 in the world (including one that sold for $12.6 million in August 2022, setting a record for most expensive sports card at auction). SCP gives this CSG-certified card (lot 1) an estimate of at least $1.5 million.

"The surface of this card is near flawless, the color is exceptional — it's a piece of art," said Andy Broome, Vice President of CSG. "I can't state enough how beautiful this card is."

In addition to the Type 1 example graded CSG 8, CSG also certified a Type 2 example. SCP is also offering that card, which is graded CSG 4.5, in this auction (lot 7).

1952 Topps #311 Mickey Mantle Type 2 card graded CSG 4.5
Click images to enlarge.

On its certification label, CSG attributes the type of the Mickey Mantle #311 card. Minor differences, such as the direction of the seams on the baseball on the back of the card, distinguish the two types. To learn more about the differences, click here or watch the video below.

The pinnacle of the sports collecting world

The Mantle card stands at the pinnacle of the sports collecting world for many reasons. In 1952, Mantle's All-Star career had just begun, and the world of sports cards was being revolutionized by a newcomer known as Topps Chewing Gum, Inc. Topps' ambitious 1952 set is widely considered to have set the framework for modern sports cards. Unfortunately, it did not sell well, resulting in an inglorious fate for high-numbered cards like the #311 Mickey Mantle. Legend has it that New York City-based Topps loaded unsold cases of these cards onto a barge and sent them to a watery grave.

Because this was Mantle’s first Topps card, many consider the 1952 Topps #311 to be his rookie card, despite his appearance in the 1951 Bowman set.

Mantle played for the New York Yankees from 1951 to 1968, when they won seven World Series championships. He won the Triple Crown in 1956 (leading in batting average, home runs and RBIs) and the Gold Glove Award in 1962. Many consider the Hall of Famer to be the best switch hitter in history.

A family of certification companies

Increasingly, collectors are turning to CSG to certify some of the greatest sports cards in the hobby. CSG also holds the distinction of being the fastest third-party grading service to certify more than 1 million cards.

CSG is part of the Certified Collectibles Group® (CCG®), whose affiliates have certified nearly 75 million collectibles. These include one of the world's most valuable coins, a Brasher Doubloon certified by Numismatic Guaranty Company™ (NGC®) that realized $9.36 million in January 2021; and a Superman #1 comic book graded by Certified Guaranty Company® (CGC®) that realized $5.3 million in January 2022.

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