Mickey Mantle 1952 #311
by William Szczepanek
The first card to be inducted into the Baseball Card Hall of Fame should be no surprise to anyone. This 1952 Topps Mickey Mantle card #311 has achieved more than a 2 to 1 margin over the runner-up Ted Williams 1954 card #001. We have spoken much about Mickey Mantle cards on this website discussing his popularity in Why are Mickey Mantle Baseball Cards More Valuable Than Others? and our reasons why the 1956 Topps Mickey Mantle card is The Greatest Baseball Card Ever. Reasons aside, almost all Mickey Mantle Baseball Cards rank high in popularity and value.
This card is often thought of as the Mickey Mantle Rookie Card, but that honor actually goes to the 1951 Bowman #253. Mantle's rookie year was 1951.
In fact, five Mantle cards place higher than the second place Ted Williams card. These are the Topps cards from 1953 #082, 1958 #150, 1957 #095 and our choice for the number one card, the 1956 #135.
The only Topps regular issue card of Mantle that does not qualify for the Hall of Fame is his card from 1969 #500. I personally believe that while he did not play in 1969, this card is an especially good one since it is the only regular series card with his lifetime statistics. He retired on March 1, 1969 after his card for that year had been produced.
The Mickey Mantle baseball card mystique continues to this day with reproductions and other special issues still being produced.
You can check out Mantle's statistics at Baseball Reference.