“Because of the centering issue and the fact that some of the players’ heads extend beyond the top of the photo’s borders, it’s not unheard of to see poorly centered cards top-to-bottom where the top of the player’s head can show up on the bottom of the card above it on the sheet.”
Kinda like the old “Kilroy was here” graffiti that was so popular in the same era.
That kind of centering might not horrify another veteran dealer, Mark Smith of Hemlock, Mich. He specializes in vintage 1950s and 1960s cards, but laments that a lot of the preoccupation with centering has perhaps gone too far.
“This set is still reasonable, even with the second-year Brown card,” said Smith, who travels much of the country on the regional and national show circuit. “It seems like certain cards come up over and over again on want-lists (and missing in offered collections), often obscure commons,” Smith added in a refrain
familiar to serious collectors and dealers.
And he agrees with Thomas about the premium attached to the untouched card backs. “I buy a lot of cards from collectors at shows and I would guess I find it about 60-40 percent for rubbed off vs. untouched,” he continued.
He also volunteered a belief that the card stock may have been better in the year preceding the 1959 set and the following year, 1960, a view that might corroborate what Thomas had noted about yellow toning with the 1959 issue.
Smith also lumps those three years together as a group, though he concedes that the 1958 and 1960 football issues may be a bit more popular with collectors. “Maybe it’s because the 1958 Topps Football design reminds collectors of 1959 Topps Baseball,” Smith suggested.
Or maybe it’s just a bit of backlash about the pink thing. *