Tuesday, August 16, 2011

1957 Topps reverse side

Very little about card backs are ever discussed, but the reverse side can be very interesting. They complete a picture by providing information that people might not know.

In the 1950s and 1960s, the cards were a wealth of information. Fun, funny, and useful facts with trivia about all aspects of baseball.

The cartoons on the back appealed to kids and adults alike. Some included quizzes about baseball history or baseball rules.

The 1957 Topps Baseball set, the first to settle on the now-standard card size of 2 ½" x 3 ½," is one of the classic sets of all time. It broke new ground while also borrowing from the past, incorporating full-color action poses (first used in the 1953 Bowman color set) with a simple, two-line text design for the player's name and team. On the obverse, a red-and-blue color scheme against gray cardboard showcased each player's statistics and added a small cartoon featuring baseball trivia.

Like its older sibling, the legendary 1952 Topps set, the 1957 Topps collection numbered 407 cards. But it added eight unnumbered checklists, four contest cards, and a "lucky penny" insert – all in all, enough to keep a die-hard collector busy for years while trying to build a high-grade master set.

Article courtesy of   PSA  Leader in Grading and Authentication |

The 1957 Topps set is loaded with famous players. In addition to 16 team cards (distinguished by their faux wood picture frames), Topps introduced their first "combo" cards.

There are some scarcities in the 1957 Topps, but the only real error card of significance belongs to Eugene Baker, an infielder for the Chicago Cubs who can be found on card #176. The error? A printing mistake bled too much red into the player name on the obverse, resulting in some cards spelling "Eugene Bakep."

The real tough cards are the four unnumbered checklists, each of which exists in two versions–one with "Bazooka" on the back, and one with "Blony."

Of all the series in 1957 Topps, cards numbered 265 through 352 are considered the hardest to find.

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