1952 Topps Baseball Cards: Key Facts, Values, And Checklist

1952 Topps Baseball Pack (Front Side)There are perhaps no other baseball cards as popular among collectors as the 1952 Topps baseball cards.

The iconic set is headlined by arguably the most sought after card in the entire hobby:

the 1952 Topps #311 Mickey Mantle.

Add to that the second year card of Willie Mays, the Eddie Mathews rookie card and appearance of countless other Hall of Famers like Jackie Robinson, Roy Campanella, and Yogi Berra and you can see why collectors love these cards.

Rare “high number” cards, error cards and multiple card back variations keep collectors plenty busy trying to build a complete set.

That said, here is a complete guide to everything you need to know about these legendary baseball cards.

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1952 Topps Baseball Card Values

The first thing most collectors ask is: how much are 1952 Topps baseball cards worth?

The answer can depend on a variety of things.

Most know that Mantle’s rookie card is by far the most expensive in the set and one of the most valuable baseball cards in the entire hobby.

Overall, they’re generally some of the pricier cards in the hobby due to the set’s popularity.

But they’re not all going to pad your retirement fund. Some common cards can go for less than $10 if they’re in poor condition.

According to the PSA SMR current market values are:

PSA 9 MINT #311 Mickey Mantle: $2,500,000

PSA 1 POOR Common Card: $10 or less

That’s quite the range. So it’s very important that you know exactly which card you’re talking about and just as important, what kind of condition the card is in.

How do you determine the card’s condition if it hasn’t already been professionally graded?

Buyers and sellers should focus on several key factors that professional graders look at such as:

  1. Centering – From top to bottom and left to right, how well is the card centered? Centering is probably the biggest concern for most collectors. On the front side, if a card exhibits no worse than 55/45 to 60/40 on the front and 75/25 on the back then it is usually considered a centered card.
  2. Corners – You want to see sharp corners. Ideally “razor sharp” as many auctioneers and sellers like to say. Round corners are signs of heavy use and are eye sores.
  3. Edges – Nice clean edges go a long way to help a card’s eye appeal. Sometimes you’ll see vintage cards that were poorly cut and don’t have nice clean edges. Professional graders (and collectors) will make exceptions for cards with known cut issues. But when possible, you want to see edges free of chipping and notches.
  4. Surface – One of the easiest ways to ruin a card’s value is if it has a crease in it. Other issues like indentation, marking, scratching, and staining can significantly reduce a card’s value.

You can always refer to cards listed for sale online as a reference only. See what a Gem Mint 10 or NM-MT 8 looks like by finding current examples listed for sale.

But please be careful and remember those are only references.

It’s just too tough to notice some condition issues, especially surface and gloss issues, by looking at you card with the naked eye and comparing it to a professionally graded copy online.

Remember: Professional graders use high-tech optical equipment when reviewing them and grading them. They can see errors you can’t.

Here’s a copy of a PSA Mint 9, PSA Ex 5, and PSA Poor 1 to give you an idea of the range in condition expectations across the grading spectrum:

1952 Topps Mickey Mantle graded PSA 9 Mint condition

1952 Topps Mickey Mantle graded PSA 5 Ex condition

1952 Topps Mickey Mantle graded PSA 1 Poor condition

1952 Topps Baseball Packs and Cases

Even the 1952 Topps baseball packs have become instantly recognizable throughout the hobby.

The green over red design with the baseball icon in the middle have become fixed in collectors’ minds. Not to mention the 5 cent price tag in the upper right.

Imagine that each of these cards once only cost a penny!

1952 Topps Baseball Pack (Front Side)

1952 Topps Baseball Pack (Reverse Side)

Even more rare than packs are the cases in which these cards were shipped. Actually, you’ll probably only ever hear of empty cases nowadays as sealed cases are all but long gone.

1952 Topps Baseball Cards Case

Key Cards

#1 Andy Pafko

Most baseball fans may not recognize Pafko but most baseball card collectors do. As card #1 in the set, his card usually suffers from abnormal wear and tear from being the first card in the set. That meant he was at the top corner of the printing sheet (exposed to increased wear) and kids wrapped their card stacks (with his usually on top) with rubber bands.

1952 Topps #1 Andy Pafko baseball card

#11 Phil Rizzuto

Rizzuto is one of several Yankee Hall of Famers included in the 1952 Topps set.

1952 Topps #11 Phil Rizzuto Baseball Card

#33 Warren Spahn

The legendary pitcher really stands out here atop the bright red background.

1952 Topps #33 Warren Spahn Baseball Card

#37 Duke Snider

You’ll notice Snider is shown in action which wasn’t common on ’52 Topps cards.

1952 Topps #37 Duke Snider Baseball Card

#48 Joe Page (Error – Johnny Sain Biography On Back)

One of two key error cards in the set is the version of card #49 with Johnny Sain’s biography on the back instead of Page’s.

1952 Topps #48 Joe Page Baseball Card Error Sain Biography

#49 Johnny Sain (Error – Joe Page Biography On Back)

The other key error card which features Joe Page’s biography on the back instead.

1952 Topps #49 Johnny Sain Baseball Card Wrong Back Error

#88 Bob Feller

The legendary “Heater From Van Meter” is shown with a bright smile atop a bright yellow background.

1952 Topps #88 Bob Feller Baseball Card

#175 Billy Martin Rookie Card

Martin won five World Series titles with the New York Yankees: four as a player and one as a manager.

1952 Topps #175 Billy Martin Rookie Card

#191 Yogi Berra

Berra was a key part of all those Yankee championships during his playing days and here he’s shown in his famous pinstripes.

1952 Topps #191 Yogi Berra Baseball Card

#261 Willie Mays

This is May’s second most valuable card behind his 1951 Bowman rookie and its instantly easy to tell why collectors love this card.

1952 Topps #261 Willie Mays baseball card

#311 Mickey Mantle

The Holy Grail of post-War baseball cards and perhaps the most desirable of all baseball cards in general.

1952 Topps #311 Mickey Mantle baseball card

#312 Jackie Robinson

This one ranks high up on the list of Robinson’s most desirable cards of all alongside his 1948 Leaf and 1949 Bowman issues.

1952 Topps #312 Jackie Robinson Baseball Card

#314 Roy Campanella

Campy’s 1952 Topps card is one of his best as the iconic Brooklyn Dodger looks off into the distance with a nice big smile.

1952 Topps #314 Roy Campanella Baseball Card

#326 George Shuba Rookie Card

Shuba may not be a household name but his rookie card is among the tougher high number rookies to find in top condition.

1952 Topps #326 George Shuba Rookie Card

#333 Pee Wee Reese

The Hall of Fame shortstop was instrumental in helping Jackie Robinson enter the Majors as the combo formed a strong bond and fearsome middle infield.

1952 Topps #333 Pee Wee Reese Baseball Card

#392 Hoyt Wilhelm Rookie Card

The second most desired high number rookie, Hoyt Wilhelm made his appearance in the ’52 Topps set at card #392.

1952 Topps #392 Hoyt Wilhelm Baseball Card

 

 

 

#407 Eddie Mathews Rookie Card

Similar to Pafko, Mathews’ position as the last card in the set exposed him to just as many condition risks as mentioned with card #1. But he also happens to be a Hall of Famer so that boosts his value way more than Pafko’s.

1952 Topps #407 Eddie Mathews Rookie Card

 

1952 Topps Baseball Card Checklist

Here is a checklist of the entire 1952 Topps baseball card set for your reference:

1 Andy Pafko
2 Pete Runnels RC
3 Hank Thompson
4 Don Lenhardt
5 Larry Jansen
6 Grady Hatton
7 Wayne Terwilliger
8 Fred Marsh RC
9 Bobby Hogue RC
10 Al Rosen
11 Phil Rizzuto
12 Monty Basgall RC
13 Johnny Wyrostek
14 Bob Elliott
15 Johnny Pesky
16 Gene Hermanski
17 Jim Hegan
18 Merrill Combs RC
19 Johnny Bucha RC
20 Billy Loes RC
21 Ferris Fain
22 Dom DiMaggio
23 Billy Goodman
24 Luke Easter
25 Johnny Groth
26 Monte Irvin
27 Sam Jethroe
28 Jerry Priddy
29 Ted Kluszewski
30 Mel Parnell
31 Gus Zernial
32 Eddie Robinson
33 Warren Spahn
34 Elmer Valo
35 Hank Sauer
36 Gil Hodges
37 Duke Snider
38 Wally Westlake
39 Dizzy Trout
40 Irv Noren
41 Bob Wellman RC
42 Lou Kretlow RC
43 Ray Scarborough
44 Con Dempsey RC
45 Eddie Joost
46 Gordon Goldsberry RC
47 Willie Jones
48 Joe Page – Error
48 Joe Page – Corrected
49 Johnny Sain – Error
49 Johnny Sain – Corrected
50 Marv Rickert RC
51 Jim Russell
52 Don Mueller
53 Chris Van Cuyk RC
54 Leo Kiely
55 Ray Boone
56 Tommy Glaviano
57 Ed Lopat
58 Bob Mahoney RC
59 Robin Roberts
60 Sid Hudson
61 Tookie Gilbert
62 Chuck Stobbs RC
63 Howie Pollet
64 Roy Sievers
65 Enos Slaughter
66 Preacher Roe
67 Allie Reynolds
68 Cliff Chambers
69 Virgil Stallcup
70 Al Zarilla
71 Tom Upton RC
72 Karl Olson RC
73 Bill Werle
74 Andy Hansen RC
75 Wes Westrum
76 Eddie Stanky
77 Bob Kennedy
78 Ellis Kinder
79 Jerry Staley
80 Herm Wehmeier
81 Vern Law
82 Duane Pillette
83 Billy Johnson
84 Vern Stephens
85 Bob Kuzava
86 Ted Gray
87 Dale Coogan
88 Bob Feller
89 Johnny Lipon
90 Mickey Grasso
91 Red Schoendienst
92 Dale Mitchell
93 Al Sima RC
94 Sam Mele
95 Ken Holcombe
96 Willard Marshall
97 Earl Torgeson
98 Billy Pierce
99 Gene Woodling
100 Del Rice
101 Max Lanier
102 Bill Kennedy
103 Cliff Mapes
104 Don Kolloway
105 Johnny Pramesa
106 Mickey Vernon
107 Connie Ryan
108 Jim Konstanty
109 Ted Wilks
110 Dutch Leonard
111 Peanuts Lowrey
112 Hank Majeski
113 Dick Sisler
114 Willard Ramsdell
115 Red Munger
116 Carl Scheib
117 Sherm Lollar
118 Ken Raffensberger
119 Mickey McDermott
120 Bob Chakales RC
121 Gus Niarhos
122 Jackie Jensen
123 Eddie Yost
124 Monte Kennedy
125 Bill Rigney
126 Fred Hutchinson
127 Paul Minner RC
128 Don Bollweg RC
129 Johnny Mize
130 Sheldon Jones
131 Morrie Martin RC
132 Clyde Kluttz RC
133 Al Widmar
134 Joe Tipton
135 Dixie Howell
136 Johnny Schmitz
137 Roy McMillan RC
138 Bill MacDonald
139 Ken Wood
140 Johnny Antonelli
141 Clint Hartung
142 Harry Perkowski RC
143 Les Moss
144 Ed Blake RC
145 Joe Haynes
146 Frank House RC
147 Bobby Young RC
148 Johnny Klippstein
149 Dick Kryhoski
150 Ted Beard
151 Wally Post RC
152 Al Evans
153 Bob Rush
154 Joe Muir RC
155 Frank Overmire
156 Frank Hiller RC
157 Bob Usher
158 Eddie Waitkus
159 Saul Rogovin RC
160 Owen Friend
161 Bud Byerly RC
162 Del Crandall
163 Stan Rojek
164 Walt Dubiel
165 Eddie Kazak
166 Paul LaPalme RC
167 Bill Howerton
168 Charlie Silvera RC
169 Howie Judson
170 Gus Bell
171 Ed Erautt RC
172 Eddie Miksis
173 Roy Smalley
174 Cuddles Marshall RC
175 Billy Martin RC
176 Hank Edwards
177 Bill Wight
178 Cass Michaels
179 Frank Smith RC
180 Charlie Maxwell RC
181 Bob Swift
182 Billy Hitchcock
183 Erv Dusak
184 Bob Ramazzotti
185 Bill Nicholson
186 Walt Masterson
187 Bob Miller
188 Bud Podbielan RC
189 Pete Reiser
190 Don Johnson RC
191 Yogi Berra
192 Myron Ginsberg RC
193 Harry Simpson RC
194 Joe Hatten
195 Minnie Minoso RC
196 Solly Hemus RC
197 George Strickland RC
198 Phil Haugstad RC
199 George Zuverink RC
200 Ralph Houk RC
201 Alex Kellner
202 Joe Collins RC
203 Curt Simmons
204 Ron Northey
205 Clyde King
206 Joe Ostrowski RC
207 Mickey Harris
208 Marlin Stuart RC
209 Howie Fox
210 Dick Fowler
211 Ray Coleman
212 Ned Garver
213 Nippy Jones
214 Johnny Hopp
215 Hank Bauer
216 Richie Ashburn
217 George Stirnweiss
218 Clyde McCullough
219 Bobby Shantz
220 Joe Presko RC
221 Granny Hamner
222 Hoot Evers
223 Del Ennis
224 Bruce Edwards
225 Frank Baumholtz
226 Dave Philley
227 Joe Garagiola
228 Al Brazle
229 Gene Bearden
230 Matt Batts
231 Sam Zoldak
232 Billy Cox
233 Bob Friend RC
234 Steve Souchock RC
235 Walt Dropo
236 Ed Fitz Gerald
237 Jerry Coleman
238 Art Houtteman
239 Rocky Bridges RC
240 Jack Phillips RC
241 Tommy Byrne
242 Tom Poholsky RC
243 Larry Doby
244 Vic Wertz
245 Sherry Robertson
246 George Kell
247 Randy Gumpert
248 Spec Shea
249 Bobby Adams
250 Carl Erskine
251 Chico Carrasquel
252 Vern Bickford
253 Johnny Berardino
254 Joe Dobson
255 Clyde Vollmer
256 Pete Suder
257 Bobby Avila
258 Steve Gromek
259 Bob Addis RC
260 Pete Castiglione
261 Willie Mays
262 Virgil Trucks
263 Harry Brecheen
264 Roy Hartsfield
265 Chuck Diering
266 Murry Dickson
267 Sid Gordon
268 Bob Lemon
269 Willard Nixon
270 Lou Brissie
271 Jim Delsing
272 Mike Garcia
273 Erv Palica
274 Ralph Branca
275 Pat Mullin
276 Jim Wilson RC
277 Earl Wilson
278 Allie Clark
279 Bud Stewart
280 Cloyd Boyer
281 Tommy Brown SP
282 Birdie Tebbetts SP
283 Phil Masi SP
284 Hank Arft SP
285 Cliff Fannin SP
286 Joe DeMaestri RC SP
287 Steve Bilko SP
288 Chet Nichols RC SP
289 Tommy Holmes
290 Joe Astroth SP
291 Gil Coan SP
292 Floyd Baker SP
293 Sibby Sisti SP
294 Walker Cooper SP
295 Phil Cavarretta
296 Red Rolfe
297 Andy Seminick SP
298 Bob Ross RC SP
299 Ray Murray RC SP
300 Barney McCosky SP
301 Bob Porterfield
302 Max Surkont RC
303 Harry Dorish
304 Sam Dente
305 Paul Richards
306 Lou Sleater RC
307 Frank Campos RC
308 Luis Aloma
309 Jim Busby
310 George Metkovich
311 Mickey Mantle
312 Jackie Robinson
313 Bobby Thomson
314 Roy Campanella
315 Leo Durocher
316 Davey Williams RC
317 Connie Marrero
318 Hal Gregg RC
319 Rube Walker RC
320 John Rutherford RC
321 Joe Black RC
322 Randy Jackson RC
323 Bubba Church
324 Warren Hacker
325 Bill Serena
326 George Shuba RC
327 Archie Wilson RC
328 Bob Borkowski RC
329 Ike Delock RC
330 Turk Lown RC
331 Tom Morgan RC
332 Tony Bartirome RC
333 Pee Wee Reese
334 Wilmer Mizell RC
335 Ted Lepcio RC
336 Dave Koslo
337 Jim Hearn
338 Sal Yvars RC
339 Russ Meyer
340 Bob Hooper
341 Hal Jeffcoat
342 Clem Labine RC
343 Dick Gernert RC
344 Ewell Blackwell
345 Sammy White RC
346 George Spencer RC
347 Joe Adcock
348 Bob Kelly RC
349 Bob Cain
350 Cal Abrams
351 Alvin Dark
352 Karl Drews
353 Bobby Del Greco RC
354 Fred Hatfield RC
355 Bobby Morgan
356 Toby Atwell RC
357 Smoky Burgess
358 John Kucab RC
359 Dee Fondy RC
360 George Crowe RC
361 Bill Posedel
362 Ken Heintzelman
363 Dick Rozek RC
364 Clyde Sukeforth RC
365 Cookie Lavagetto
366 Dave Madison RC
367 Bob Thorpe RC
368 Ed Wright RC
369 Dick Groat RC
370 Billy Hoeft RC
371 Bobby Hofman
372 Gil McDougald RC
373 Jim Turner RC
374 Al Benton RC
375 Jack Merson RC
376 Faye Throneberry RC
377 Chuck Dressen MG
378 Les Fusselman RC
379 Joe Rossi RC
380 Clem Koshorek RC
381 Milton Stock RC
382 Sam Jones RC
383 Del Wilber RC
384 Frankie Crosetti
385 Herman Franks RC
386 Eddie Yuhas RC
387 Billy Meyer MG
388 Bob Chipman
389 Ben Wade RC
390 Rocky Nelson RC
391 Ben Chapman
392 Hoyt Wilhelm RC
393 Ebba St. Claire RC
394 Billy Herman
395 Jake Pitler
396 Dick Williams RC
397 Forrest Main RC
398 Hal Rice
399 Jim Fridley RC
400 Bill Dickey
401 Bob Schultz RC
402 Earl Harrist RC
403 Bill Miller RC
404 Dick Brodowski RC
405 Eddie Pellagrini
406 Joe Nuxhall RC
407 Eddie Mathews RC

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