#170 Gus Bell
Progress: 1st of this card
204 of 407
How acquired: sent by a reader
Awhile back, I was sent an envelope with four '52 Topps from a reader named Dave. I don't solicit cards on this blog, I'm happy to try to work out trades, but I've never asked for people to just send me cards (nor I am doing so now), they're just too expensive. On my other blog I ask for Tim Wallach cards. I don't feel guilty about it, as more often than not, a trashcan is the alternative to my collection. No one is throwing away '52 Topps.
Especially not ones in as beautiful of shape as the four Dave sent. By time I post all four the counter on the right side of the page will show 231 cards. The four he sent me are probably all in the top 5 of my 231 as far as condition goes. These cards could have been easily submitted for grading and flipped for a healthy profit. They're in the type of condition that I usually just ignore on ebay. All of them are going to be really fantastic additions to my '52 binder.
Speaking of my '52 binder, with this Gus Bell, I have now crossed the 50% mark on completing the set. It's kind of a shocking development that I didn't really expect to ever see happen. About nine years ago I bought my first '52 because I felt like I should have at least one card from every Topps set. This blog started as sort of a lark. I've reached a point, where I feel confident I will complete the non-hi number portion of the set, cards 1-310. As it stands, I'm 65.8% of the way to that goal. Willie Mays looms large, and Yogi Berra, Andy Pafko, Phil Rizzuto, Richie Ashburn, and Warren Spahn are going to dent my budget as well, but it's starting to feel possible.
As to the specifics of this Gus Bell, it's a great looking card, and in great shape. The yellow has maintained all it's glow and really compliments the Pirates uniform. I believe it's also the first card I've seen where the name box isn't centered on the card. By moving it to the right, it has the effect of centering the old Pirates logo on the card, and I have zero problems with that awesome looking logo being featured front and center. Bell wasn't a name I was familiar with, and after looking him up, feel kind of stupid. He was an everyday starter for the better part of his 15 year career and had a run with the Reds where he made four All-Star teams in a five year stretch. A stretch that also included a three year run of at least 100 RBI's and 180+ hits (I still love my counting stats, and no one will ever convince me otherwise).
Stats: 15 seasons, 4x All-Star, 1,823 hits, 206 home runs, 942 RBI, .281 avg.
Best Hall of Fame Showing: N/A
Below is the note from Dave. His script is really very nice, and I feel like it just looks like the handwriting that should belong to someone with a box full of extra '52 Topps lying around. I try to write in script as much as possible, but it's no where near as nice. Thank for the cards Dave.