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  #1  
Old 12-07-2018, 08:50 AM
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Default Whatís the obsession with Mickey Mantle?

Seriously. There was this mythology about the 52 card being printed late and scads of them buried at sea. Now all sorts of other Mantle cards seem to be steadily increasing in value. Whatís the obsession with Mantle? Are there a few hundred thousand Billy Crystal clones out there. Babe Ruth sure. Jackie sure. I get those. They are part of the fabric of American history. But Mantle was a big strong galoot who hit some amazing dingers. Not denigrating his stats, but donít understand the collecting obsession around him.
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Old 12-07-2018, 09:04 AM
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New York Yankees 12 Pennants in 14 seasons and 7 World Championships. He also had 2 huge years in 1956 and 1957 when Baseball Cards were becoming big with kids. When the hobby took off in the late 70s and early 80s it was fueled by those 50s kids who idolized Mantle and were now grown with disposable income to relive their childhoods.
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Old 12-07-2018, 09:06 AM
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I grew up around NYC in the fifties. Saw many games at old Yankee Stadium. In the world I lived in there was Mantle and there was everyone else. Lots of great stars back in those days but no one shined quite the same way as the Mick. Didn't hurt that the Yankees had that dynasty thing going.

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Old 12-07-2018, 09:22 AM
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We also need links to all the other threads in which someone has raised this question

I collect sets. If he is in a set, I need him. If he has a variation in a set, like 52 and 67 (3), I need those too.

I have seen the debate about why his premium is bigger than other stars both here on the main board and on the post war board, and on CU and other boards

It seems to me people who don't have his cards think they are overpriced and are waiting for the market to correct, while those who have them hope the market continues to climb. So far the haves have it.
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Old 12-07-2018, 09:32 AM
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Agree that the confluence of events regarding world championships, New York, early-mid 50s, rise of baseball card collecting, all of that. But what i see personally, is the aura around the man. My dad grew up in that time through a large portion of the Midwest and even in towns that should be all about Musial, Banks and Aaron, he says there was still talk about Mickey.
My dad (and I assume most boys from that generation) can run for hours with Mantle stories. The time his rookie year he pulled up from a fly ball because he would have run over DiMaggio in the outfield. That gave him a knee injury that slowed him the rest of his career. The jersey number thing, Ruth was three, Gherig was 4, DiMaggio was 5, Mantle knew he was next but chose 7. The stories of towering home runs. Plus, I think the struggles with partying, alcohol, etc. only made him more human to his fans.
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Old 12-07-2018, 09:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ALR-bishop View Post
We also need links to all the other threads in which someone has raised this question

I collect sets. If he is in a set, I need him. If he has a variation in a set, like 52 and 67 (3), I need those too.

I have seen the debate about why his premium is bigger than other stars both here on the main board and on the post war board, and on CU and other boards

It seems to me people who don't have his cards think they are overpriced and are waiting for the market to correct, while those who have them hope the market continues to climb. So far the haves have it.
I agree with this a lot, and also, like Babe Ruth, he is a legend, maybe even of epic proportions, and Legends will never be forgotten about.
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Old 12-07-2018, 10:41 AM
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Y'know, sort of the same thing with Nolan Ryan. A lot would argue he was not the "complete all around" best pitcher in his era (Seaver, Carlton, Palmer), but his card prices sure are head and shoulders above the rest. Why? The sheer overpowering awesomeness, kind of like Mick, that's what sticks in minds...the stuff legends are made of, stuff that no one else can do.
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Old 12-07-2018, 10:51 AM
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I remember opening up packs in the early 1960's, and knew then that if I found a Mickey Mantle, I hit the jackpot. He could be traded for a whole stack of some other kid's cards. Mantle was an iconic figure in the 50's and 60's, and a lot of baby boomers have sunk big money into his cards and memorabilia.

Now it's always possible his star will fade a bit over time, when a new generation takes over the hobby. But for now he is still the post-WWII gold standard.
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Old 12-07-2018, 10:58 AM
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My Dad was born in 1945 so he was primetime Mantle when he was a kid. He grew up in Cincinnati at a time when there were local stars like Frank Robinson and Ted Kluszewski, but even he worshipped Mickey Mantle.

He was like a god to kids. Good-looking, great baseball name, a 5 tool player, and he played for what was already a dynasty team.

Now when you look at his overall career stats they are good but not god-like like other players of his era like Willie Mays. But I think collectors look at Mantles glory era, during the 50s when he was relatively healthy and not plagued by alcoholism. He played a majority of his career with a torn ACL and in many ways the bottle helped ease the pain.

Mantle is like Mike Trout, but on a higher profile team. Now image if Mike Trout got hurt and found the bottle in the 2020s. That is Mickey Mantle.
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Old 12-07-2018, 11:05 AM
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love steve but I think hes drinking
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Old 12-07-2018, 11:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Snapolit1 View Post
Are there a few hundred thousand Billy Crystal clones out there.
I'm pretty sure that you answered your own question with this statement. Just a quick look at some historical data and NYC had a population of nearly 8 million during the 1950s, more than twice the next biggest city in the US. And I'm not sure if that counts the surrounding area (NJ, Conn., Long Island, etc.).
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  #12  
Old 12-07-2018, 11:18 AM
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Default Mantle.

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Originally Posted by 100backstroke View Post
Y'know, sort of the same thing with Nolan Ryan. A lot would argue he was not the "complete all around" best pitcher in his era (Seaver, Carlton, Palmer), but his card prices sure are head and shoulders above the rest. Why? The sheer overpowering awesomeness, kind of like Mick, that's what sticks in minds...the stuff legends are made of, stuff that no one else can do.
Well said. Ryan wasn’t even close to the pitchers that Seaver, Carlton & Palmer were. They were all superior pitchers vs. Ryan. However, they didn’t throw 100 mph and compile the strike outs Ryan did. Strikeouts and no-hitters are “sparkling-like” statistics that attract attention. Mantle was perceived as “Goliath” via his supernatural-like power and ability to hit a baseball further than anyone in baseball history. A dynamic type skill set that enabled him to be viewed by his avid followers as a sort of God. Mays, Willians, Musial, Aaron all better hitters, but they weren’t superhuman like The Mick. Thus, both Mantle & Ryan carry an uncanny hobby mystique that places their cards at a higher level than their peers who actually bested their overall ability.

Last edited by Vintageclout; 12-07-2018 at 11:20 AM. Reason: Spelling
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  #13  
Old 12-07-2018, 11:27 AM
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It seems the Mantle mystique gets some mileage out of the tragic nature of his career---self-inflicted much of it was. It's not necessarily PC to say, but he was the ideal white, blond-haired, blue eyed ballplayer. (Not positive on the eye color, but you get the idea). I can't help but smile whenever I see footage of him playing. What an athlete!

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Old 12-07-2018, 11:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Snapolit1 View Post
Seriously. There was this mythology about the 52 card being printed late and scads of them buried at sea. Now all sorts of other Mantle cards seem to be steadily increasing in value. What’s the obsession with Mantle? Are there a few hundred thousand Billy Crystal clones out there. Babe Ruth sure. Jackie sure. I get those. They are part of the fabric of American history. But Mantle was a big strong galoot who hit some amazing dingers. Not denigrating his stats, but don’t understand the collecting obsession around him.
This post quoted above is either world class trolling or world class ignorance.

If you care to engage in some research before taking a pot shot at the focus of many collectors— or even google some video documentaries— you’ll see the perfect storm/alchemy that resulted in Mantle’s enduring popularity. And that includes the flawed and thus very relatable humanity he displayed late in life. Add to all that how so many now 30-40-somethings grew up in an era where Mantle’s cards held great mystique and status. It’s a case of the sum being far greater than the parts. So while it is about so much more than stats, it’s still worth noting that Mantle at his peak was about as nasty as it got in his time. Lastly, Vintageclout and others’ citing of Nolan Ryan is apt when discussing Mantle— sheer popularity, the ability to capture imaginations, these are powerful forces, especially in collecting.

Last edited by MattyC; 12-07-2018 at 11:43 AM.
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  #15  
Old 12-07-2018, 11:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Snapolit1 View Post
Seriously. There was this mythology about the 52 card being printed late and scads of them buried at sea. Now all sorts of other Mantle cards seem to be steadily increasing in value. Whatís the obsession with Mantle? Are there a few hundred thousand Billy Crystal clones out there. Babe Ruth sure. Jackie sure. I get those. They are part of the fabric of American history. But Mantle was a big strong galoot who hit some amazing dingers. Not denigrating his stats, but donít understand the collecting obsession around him.
Maybe internalize a bit and ask yourself the same question. If you felt the urge to make the topic, sat down and typed, reread and hit post, you might have a slight obsession yourself.
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  #16  
Old 12-07-2018, 01:29 PM
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Default plain and simple....

All legends......Baseball Icons......Ruth, Mantle, Cobb, Mays, Gehrig ect....household names......all larger than life.....even in non sports general population has heard or know of their fame.....stats cans be argued, but its that certain X factor..... there stories and lifestyles that trandscend the sport or hobby...both good and bad....good movies and books are written about them....they have a certain enigma to them.....


Mantle, is in this category.....especially the boomers.....he hit when bb cards were truly as American as the game or apple pie....1952 topps set , one of the best issues ever (ojs, 33 goudeys,, t206, 52 topps)....home runs are sexy to the American public.....


short print....classic issue....baseball hero and icon , a legend.... a well recognized image of the Mick, very stoic, arrogant, and young.....another "mona lisa" like the iconic stare of the 206 Wagner or the stoic image of the t206 plank....the image is burned in all collectors minds wether they like it or not....

hence the perfect storm!

you can go on and on and on.........


you really can't go too wrong owning ant authentic '52 mantle....
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Old 12-07-2018, 01:59 PM
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Plus there is this letter.
Warning : Defintely not suitable for work.

https://www.somethingawful.com/news/micks-lost-letters/

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Old 12-07-2018, 01:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MattyC View Post
This post quoted above is either world class trolling or world class ignorance.

If you care to engage in some research before taking a pot shot at the focus of many collectors— or even google some video documentaries— you’ll see the perfect storm/alchemy that resulted in Mantle’s enduring popularity. And that includes the flawed and thus very relatable humanity he displayed late in life. Add to all that how so many now 30-40-somethings grew up in an era where Mantle’s cards held great mystique and status. It’s a case of the sum being far greater than the parts. So while it is about so much more than stats, it’s still worth noting that Mantle at his peak was about as nasty as it got in his time. Lastly, Vintageclout and others’ citing of Nolan Ryan is apt when discussing Mantle— sheer popularity, the ability to capture imaginations, these are powerful forces, especially in collecting.
A tad defensive, jeez. I don't need to do any research pal to know why Mickey Mantle is. I grew up in NYC. I also know Willie Mays played in NYC at some point too, and he's a flawed sometimes nasty unpleasant guy. And I almost never see anyone debating his cards on this board.

I'm not asking why his card are popular. I am asking why is he the most important face in post war collecting?

Last edited by Snapolit1; 12-07-2018 at 02:15 PM.
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  #19  
Old 12-07-2018, 02:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GregC View Post
Maybe internalize a bit and ask yourself the same question. If you felt the urge to make the topic, sat down and typed, reread and hit post, you might have a slight obsession yourself.
One post on Mickey Mantle in 7 years. I'd say that's a pretty low level obsession.
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Old 12-07-2018, 02:12 PM
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Discussions about the value of Mantle cards in and of themselves and relative to other stars like Aaron and Mays ( personality and all) have occurred over on post war from time to time

Last edited by ALR-bishop; 12-07-2018 at 02:17 PM.
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Old 12-07-2018, 02:27 PM
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I think the question is a fair one.

It also leads to some deeper questions, about why one player over another, why one card more than another.

Mantle obviously has become sort of a symbol of his era, he certainly performed well enough. And had the advantage of playing in NY for what was one of the all time great teams.
But Mays was really close in performance, and also played in NY his first two years.
Had the team stayed, and if he'd retired after 1971 instead of hanging on a bit too long, how would he be viewed.

I think the NY effect has a bunch to do with it. Even when I was a kid, NY seemed like a special place where everything was bigger and better and more spectacular. And that was suburban western Mass/Ct in the 70's. I can only imagine the impression it had in most of the country in the 50's.
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Old 12-07-2018, 02:41 PM
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Bob Costas explains it better than I ever could.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pa61H0FbtXA

Last edited by MVSNYC; 12-07-2018 at 02:54 PM.
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Old 12-07-2018, 02:41 PM
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I've posted this before in response to the same question.

First and foremost perhaps, factoring in an unbelievable number of walks, he was even better than his counting stats suggest. Top 10 player in my opinion.

New York during the 1950s. See Ken Burns, The Capital of Baseball.

Yankees. All the World Series.

Sorry to say this, but white.

The mystique of playing in pain and even at his extremely high level falling short of his ability.

Switch hitter.

Combo of power and speed.

His charisma, the down to earth folk hero personality.

The big forearms.

There's probably more.
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Last edited by Peter_Spaeth; 12-07-2018 at 02:42 PM.
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Old 12-07-2018, 02:47 PM
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Well obviously being on the Yankees and winning all those titles don't hurt.

But, going off the idea he was just a big strong guy that hit a lot of homers kind of misses the point.

One quick look at his statistics and he was also a sabermetricians dream player.

Considering he played hurt most of his career and was a shadow of himself by his age 33 season, he sure has quite an accumulation of peripheral stats we didn't even take into account 20+ years ago. An "accumulator" he was not.

Just one example is WPA (Win Probability Added). He's #5 All-Time in this accumulated stat. Only guys ahead of him are Barry Bonds, Willie Mays, Hank Aaron, Ted Williams. The only actual player with a comparable number of plate appearances on this list is Ted Williams. Everybody else around him has quite a few more.

It's up to everybody else to decide how much stock they put in this particular stat, but it's just one of many he rates very highly on.
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Old 12-07-2018, 02:51 PM
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I also think the OP's question was fair. I've thought about it a lot, and certainly understand his immense popularity among Baby Boomers and those slightly older. Plus, it's just a classic and iconic Baseball Name... "Mickey Mantle". Perhaps second only to Babe Ruth, in terms of generating immediate name recognition, and having a certain "ring" to it.

But I do wonder how his values will hold up after the Baby Boom generation has passed. That will leave nobody who actually saw him play, or idolized/admired him in the ways described above. I think there may be a lesser premium placed on Mantle, with a decline starting around the year 2030 or so.

Just my humble opinion, and only time will tell.

Last edited by perezfan; 12-07-2018 at 02:53 PM.
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Old 12-07-2018, 03:01 PM
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Ruth and Gehrig and Cobb have held up pretty well. I think Mantle will too. But who knows.
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Old 12-07-2018, 03:19 PM
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Just a quick look at some historical data and NYC had a population of nearly 8 million during the 1950s, more than twice the next biggest city in the US.
Also consider that the South in the 1950's and early 60's had nary a MLB team. The Yankees were America's team long before the Braves were. I know plenty of people my parents age from North and South Carolina who are huge Yankee fans because that is all they had growing up.
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Old 12-07-2018, 03:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MattyC View Post
This post quoted above is either world class trolling or world class ignorance.

If you care to engage in some research before taking a pot shot at the focus of many collectorsó or even google some video documentariesó youíll see the perfect storm/alchemy that resulted in Mantleís enduring popularity. And that includes the flawed and thus very relatable humanity he displayed late in life. Add to all that how so many now 30-40-somethings grew up in an era where Mantleís cards held great mystique and status. Itís a case of the sum being far greater than the parts. So while it is about so much more than stats, itís still worth noting that Mantle at his peak was about as nasty as it got in his time. Lastly, Vintageclout and othersí citing of Nolan Ryan is apt when discussing Mantleó sheer popularity, the ability to capture imaginations, these are powerful forces, especially in collecting.
Well said. Amen.
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Old 12-07-2018, 03:30 PM
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Mantle is gold. I don't know how rare the metal actually is, but like William Devane, I would stockpile it if I could. Mantle cards (seemingly) always go up in value, so whenever ebay puts out their 15% off coupons, the first things I look for are Micks. He played a bit before my time and as a New Yorker I've never understood the obsession with him, but the reality is he's at the apex of the collecting world and I don't see that ever changing.

This is a poll thread I started a while back, to try to see how many people around these parts actually saw Mantle play. It may help add a bit to the current discussion...
http://www.net54baseball.com/showthread.php?t=255158
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Old 12-07-2018, 03:32 PM
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Default Whatís the obsession with Mickey Mantle?

I don't have much to add to what Matty said, but would make one other point in regards to the mystique and the whole not equaling the sum of the parts. Over everything else I think you have to consider the timing - Mickey Mantle's timing was absolutely perfect in not one, but TWO regards:

1) The culimanation of time and place for baseball was the 1950's in New York City. I would argue the popularity for baseball in the timeframe even above and beyond the Ruth / Gehrig era of the 1920's and 30's. They established the popularity of the game. 25 years later it was absolutely boiling over... Then all of the WS appearances and you had Mantle as a household name by the mid 1950's. This then continued through 1964 on and off with Mickey being a prime-time TV star at a time when the medium was also growing exponentially. You had to be under a rock to not know who Mickey Mantle was, even if you didn't care about baseball.

2) The culmination of time and player for the explosion of the card hobby in the the late 1970's and early 1980's was again...you guessed it, Mickey Mantle. When hotel shows and card shops started springing up everywhere, whose cards and whose autograph did an overwhelming majority of collectors and nostalgia hounds want first?

Bottom line, he was the most popular player of his generation and then helped to usher in the baseball card era several decades later. It's one of those things that has some novelty to it yes - and a sheen that cannot be explained by his stats or comparison to other players alone.
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Last edited by jchcollins; 12-07-2018 at 06:41 PM.
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Old 12-07-2018, 03:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Snapolit1 View Post
A tad defensive, jeez. I don't need to do any research pal to know why Mickey Mantle is. I grew up in NYC. I also know Willie Mays played in NYC at some point too, and he's a flawed sometimes nasty unpleasant guy. And I almost never see anyone debating his cards on this board.

I'm not asking why his card are popular. I am asking why is he the most important face in post war collecting?
Your question is very fair. There are a few of us who were in the hobby when Mantle wasn't the face post war collecting. He was on the same level as Willie Mays and Ted Williams. Then his cards blew up and he has just kept pulling away since. I think the fact that he was in the 52 high series (and the key card in that set), Mays was a semi-high and Williams didn't have a card probably helps too. Being the best card in Topps first set and part of the most difficult series of Topps cards ever made that card the post war card to have and spilled over to his other cards.

However, it was something that changed in the mid-eighties. Like I said in a previous post, I believe it was a group of 50s baby boomers coming into the hobby that cemented Mantle's statis. Starting collecting in the 60s, Mantle wasn't the most desirable card, it was Willie Mays, followed by Ted Williams. Mays was the best player in the game through most of the sixties. Perhaps if the hobby had exploded later (or earlier) it would be Mays or Williams, but that Yankee mystique is powerful.
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Old 12-07-2018, 03:53 PM
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Mantle is probably revered because unlike Ted Williams and Willie Mays, almost everyone liked Mickey Mantle. Think about the stories you hear about people who have ever interacted with Willie or Ted. And then think about how fun Mantle seems. Why wouldn't a kid want to follow Mantle when faced with a decision between him and a crab like Mays. New York City is the largest city in the country and at one time both Mays and Mantle played in it. If you were from New York, there's no way you were going near a Red Sock like Williams and it doesn't help Williams that he missed significant years due to military service or that before Mantle he had to compete with Joe DiMaggio.

Last edited by packs; 12-07-2018 at 03:54 PM.
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Old 12-07-2018, 04:32 PM
The Nasty Nati The Nasty Nati is offline
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Originally Posted by Lordstan View Post
Plus there is this letter.
Warning : Defintely not suitable for work.

https://www.somethingawful.com/news/micks-lost-letters/

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Haha are these real?

EDIT: This can't be real, but great spoof.

Last edited by The Nasty Nati; 12-07-2018 at 04:34 PM.
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Old 12-07-2018, 04:52 PM
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The comparison with Ryan is one I hadn't considered but is very useful for collectors of my generation (X) to consider the question through. I am a huge Ryan fan. I recognize that there were better pitchers in his generation. Doesn't matter. Statistics do not define the appeal of Nolan Ryan. It was just so exciting every time he went to the mound. Seaver or Carlton was a better pitcher but there wasn't the potential for a 10+ K no-no whenever he went up there. With Ryan, you never knew, other than you were going to see an explosive fastball and a wicked curve and the hitters were going to catch him or not. He was a gunslinger as a starter. What appealed to me is that from 72-79 he led the league in K's seven times but also walked the most batters six times and is #1 all time in fewest hits per 9 innings. He has the most Ks and the most BBs and the most no-hitters in history. It was crazy fun whenever he went out there: if a player got on it was rare for the next guy to do much with it. I suspect Mantle was the same way: he might not have been the best in the game (though for a couple of seasons, I think he was), but there was always the possibility that he busts one out of the stadium.

It's charisma: you can't fake it. Mantle had it. Mays not.
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Old 12-07-2018, 05:00 PM
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Mays, Willians, Musial, Aaron all better hitters, but they werenít superhuman like The Mick.
Non of these players had an injury their rookie year like the Mick NOR were they SWITCH HITTERS.
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  #36  
Old 12-07-2018, 05:01 PM
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Nor were they interesting. What salacious and extravagant stories have you heard about Stan Musial?
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Old 12-07-2018, 05:11 PM
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I never saw Mantle play. He retired a few days before I was born. I don't have any more emotional interest in or connection to him than I do any other talented players of his day like Willie Mays, Hank Aaron, or Roberto Clemente. I never saw any of them play either. His playing day cards are of interest to me only because they are worth a lot, are a good investment, and have bragging rights tied to them. I buy them for those purposes only. If they were weren't worth much, I wouldn't really care about owning them. I'm just being honest, and I'm sure I'm not the only one with this view.

Now Dave Kingman, that was the player I admired as a kid. I actually saw him play. I collect his cards because I admired his abilities and "connected" with him as a kid. His cards happen to be inexpensive, but whatever. I still like them.
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Old 12-07-2018, 05:20 PM
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Nor were they interesting. What salacious and extravagant stories have you heard about Stan Musial?
He would on occasion steal a base
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  #39  
Old 12-07-2018, 06:09 PM
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Steve, Really?? This is Mickey Mantle....I thought you were a better baseball historian than that....
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Old 12-07-2018, 06:26 PM
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It's charisma: you can't fake it. Mantle had it. Mays not.
I don't think that's fair. I think over time Mays became more reticent and later in life was by most accounts often sullen, but as a young man from what I can tell he had lots of charisma and played the game with an unrivaled joie de vivre.
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Old 12-07-2018, 06:28 PM
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Originally Posted by Snapolit1 View Post
Seriously. There was this mythology about the 52 card being printed late and scads of them buried at sea. Now all sorts of other Mantle cards seem to be steadily increasing in value. Whatís the obsession with Mantle? Are there a few hundred thousand Billy Crystal clones out there. Babe Ruth sure. Jackie sure. I get those. They are part of the fabric of American history. But Mantle was a big strong galoot who hit some amazing dingers. Not denigrating his stats, but donít understand the collecting obsession around him.
???????
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  #42  
Old 12-07-2018, 06:45 PM
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Originally Posted by The Nasty Nati View Post
Haha are these real?

EDIT: This can't be real, but great spoof.


Itís real. Itís his handwriting, and the rest of the historical details line up...


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Old 12-07-2018, 06:50 PM
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The Mickey Mantle obsession I understand. Derek Jeter I do not.
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  #44  
Old 12-07-2018, 06:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Exhibitman View Post
The comparison with Ryan is one I hadn't considered but is very useful for collectors of my generation (X) to consider the question through. I am a huge Ryan fan. I recognize that there were better pitchers in his generation. Doesn't matter. Statistics do not define the appeal of Nolan Ryan. It was just so exciting every time he went to the mound. Seaver or Carlton was a better pitcher but there wasn't the potential for a 10+ K no-no whenever he went up there. With Ryan, you never knew, other than you were going to see an explosive fastball and a wicked curve and the hitters were going to catch him or not. He was a gunslinger as a starter. What appealed to me is that from 72-79 he led the league in K's seven times but also walked the most batters six times and is #1 all time in fewest hits per 9 innings. He has the most Ks and the most BBs and the most no-hitters in history. It was crazy fun whenever he went out there: if a player got on it was rare for the next guy to do much with it. I suspect Mantle was the same way: he might not have been the best in the game (though for a couple of seasons, I think he was), but there was always the possibility that he busts one out of the stadium.

It's charisma: you can't fake it. Mantle had it. Mays not.
Agreed on the Ryan comparison. Ryan was the closest thing my generation had (I'm also X but late X...) to Mantle. I'm 41 and started collecting in 1986. My first person in the hobby like that was, well...Mantle - because he was still alive, doing shows, and routinely graced the "hot" list in each month's Beckett when it came in the mail. When I was about 10 or 11 years old, the kid down the street traded me an absoulety destroyed, water-damaged '65 Topps Mantle #350. I was on cloud 9 for weeks - figuring I had just landed something that should be on display in Cooperstown. After Nolan went to the Rangers in '89 and the handwriting on the wall for all the marks he stood to break became apparent, he was solid gold. There was no more popular player in the sport of baseball - and even after he retired in the hobby - for the next 5-7 years probably.

I never thought of it this way, but yes - there are some players, a select few per generation - that can transcend like that. Mantle and Nolan are probably the two most notable in the card hobby today - that would be my argument at least.
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  #45  
Old 12-07-2018, 06:56 PM
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I also think the OP's question was fair. I've thought about it a lot, and certainly understand his immense popularity among Baby Boomers and those slightly older. Plus, it's just a classic and iconic Baseball Name... "Mickey Mantle". Perhaps second only to Babe Ruth, in terms of generating immediate name recognition, and having a certain "ring" to it.

But I do wonder how his values will hold up after the Baby Boom generation has passed. That will leave nobody who actually saw him play, or idolized/admired him in the ways described above. I think there may be a lesser premium placed on Mantle, with a decline starting around the year 2030 or so.

Just my humble opinion, and only time will tell.

Yeah, his chief competitor name-wise was Mickey Mouse, who hasn't faired too badly either, but couldn't hit the curve I'm told.
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Old 12-07-2018, 07:06 PM
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Itís real. Itís his handwriting, and the rest of the historical details line up...


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Ok, I actually looked at the link that was posted. The '73 letter (the BJ story) I have always understood to be real. The other things up there are in different handwriting (but with the same signature) and those look to me to be fakes.
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Old 12-07-2018, 07:40 PM
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The Mickey Mantle obsession I understand. Derek Jeter I do not.
I don't understand the Mickey Mantle obsession, probably because he retired about the same time I was born. So I never got to see him play or be part of the excitement of all the WS rings.

Now Derek Jeter I completely understand. At first I hated on him but after watching him play for many years I learned to highly respect his game. Just name 1 person who tried harder every day on the field than he did.
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Old 12-07-2018, 07:47 PM
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I don't think it's an either/or debate. I do understand the appeal of Mantle. But I am also sometimes surprised at the prices of some of his cards, especially his common 60's Topps base cards.
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Old 12-07-2018, 08:33 PM
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Jeter is easy to understand. New York Yankees is about 50 percent and the other half is that in an era of drugs, prima donnas, and a$$holes, he was the clean-cut, squeaky clean, respectful, modest All American young man. And having a foil in ARod just highlighted those qualities all the more, particularly when he did well in post-season and for a while ARod underperformed.
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Last edited by Peter_Spaeth; 12-07-2018 at 08:34 PM.
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Old 12-07-2018, 08:35 PM
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Jeter is easy to understand. New York Yankees is about 50 percent and the other half is that in an era of drugs, prima donnas, and a$$holes, he was the clean-cut, squeaky clean, respectful, modest All American young man.
He also had a strong work ethic, was clutch, and has the 6th most hits all-time.
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