Several Mickey Mantle 1952 Topps Cards Alleged to be Altered

The Blowout forum has new findings, including three 1952 Topps Mickey Mantle cards that appear to be altered

Things had been a little quiet on the Blowout front since the discovery of numerous cards that appear to have been altered and resold for big money. But today, some more cards were brought to the forefront.

While the 1952 Topps Mickey Mantle cards aren’t from the pre-war era, they are older vintage. And relating to us a bit more from a pre-war vantage point, they are really the only cards challenging the record $3.1M record achieved by a Honus Wagner T206. The Mantle card, even if blatantly overrated, is one of the most desirable in the entire hobby. Now, Blowout members allege at least three of them have been altered and resold by PWCC through consignments.

You can read the thread yourself in that link above but in short, here are the allegations:

  • A 2.5 BVG was cleaned and graded a PSA 2.5, selling for nearly $2,000 more
  • A BVG Altered was cleaned and graded a BVG 4.5, selling for more than $12,000 more
  • A PSA 1 was cleaned and graded a PSA 1.5, selling for more than $5,500 more

Mantle 1952 ToppsThe allegations, like the others, are being made as defects on the cards appear to indicate they are the same.

The most interesting to me here is the first example that included a card that did not reportedly gain a bump in grade. Despite no bump up, the card still sold for more.

That’s pretty important in the grand scheme of things. If the cards are really the same, that tells us that even cards that don’t get bumped in terms of a grade can still sell for much more if they look better. The ‘Buy the card, not the holder’ mantra is one that is popular when it comes to buying graded cards, so that theory isn’t a new one. But it’s reinforced in this case. Collectors are routinely paying more for better examples of cards in the same grade. This would appear to be a case of that, though, I would add that PSA cards can often sell for more than those graded of other companies.

Most alterations made are obviously done so to increase a technical grade. But even if that doesn’t happen, that doesn’t mean the alteration has failed. Even when a card doesn’t enjoy a grade bump, a nice bump in its value can still occur if it comes away looking better.

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