Net 54 Baseball Cards UPD
All the cards in the set feature Robinson in different action and portrait poses. The cards use black and white photographs and have rounded corners (the photo on the card) with a white border. The cards have three different backs, but each has a Bond Bread advertising logo and a quote from Jackie Robinson.
Net 54 baseball cards
In the summer of 1948, the next batch of 6 cards were distributed to all major baseball cities (targeting black communities). These cards included: Glove in Air, Leaping No Scoreboard, Fielding No Ball in Glove, Fielding Ball in Glove, Awaiting Pitch and Batting White Sleeves. The Glove in Air and Leaping No Scoreboard were limited in their distribution, which is why they are far scarcer than any other card in the set.
In the summer of 1949, the remaining 6 cards were released. These cards included: Sliding (photo taken during the July 2, 1949 game against the Giants), Leaping Scoreboard, Batting No Sleeves, Throwing, Running Down Baseline and Running to Catch Ball. The Throwing and Batting No Sleeves cards were also limited in distribution, which makes sense given their scarcity.
PSA has graded 340 total cards across the set, but The Holding Glove in Air card has the fewest. That said, the Facsimile Autograph card is going to set you back the most money, even though Bond Bread likely printed it in vastly greater numbers than any other card.
The same could be said for domestic baseball card issues prior to 1947, only one of which featured a Black player. While it would be easy to discount the utter lack of Black faces as merely reflective of the times, such an explanation fails to account for the many Black boxers who made their way onto trading cards, going back to at least 1909. Ultimately, the whiteness of baseball cards was due solely to the whiteness of what was then perceived (and enforced) as Organized Baseball. Jack Johnson, Joe Jeannette, and Joe Gans were professional boxers. The Philadelphia Stars, Newark Eagles and Homestead Grays meanwhile? These were semi-pro.
Thus the 1947 season brought with it not only the integration of Baseball but (several rungs down the ladder of importance) the opportunity to integrate baseball cards as well. All that was missing were the baseball cards themselves!
While today we take it for granted that a new baseball card set (if not dozens of different ones) will come out every year, such was not the case in the 1940s. Following the three-year run of Gum, Inc., and its Play Ball sets from 1939-41, the War and other national priorities left American baseball without a major set to chronicle its players until 1948, when Gum, Inc., baseball cards returned to shelves, this time under the Bowman name.
Bond Bread will feature in this article twice. This first instance is to highlight a 48-card release comprised of four boxers and 44 baseball stars. The selection of baseball stars included Ted Williams, Joe DiMaggio, and Stan Musial but most notably a baseball card of Brooklyn Dodgers rookie Jackie Robinson.
Precise dating for this issue is unknown and may well be after 1947. A mix of baseball and movie star photos, the baseball images match those of the Bond Bread issue but are easily distinguished in at least two ways. One, they are perforated. Two, their backs include other cards from the set or, in some cases, advertising. The Robinson card, for example, features actor James Cagney on the reverse.
As with the Sport Star Subjects, these cards are also frequently misidentified as Bond Bread cards, even by third party grading companies and auction houses. Post 391 in this Net54 Baseball Forum thread shows the front and back of an uncut sheet, including the ELGEE branding. Post 386 in the same thread provides additional background on the company.
Certainly each of these clues could merely point to bios written ahead of time, hence do not point definitively to a 1947 release of the actual cards. Still, absent any information affirming a 1948 release, the clues are certainly intriguing.
From a rookie card perspective, this card beats Leaf and Bowman by a year, has unambiguous baseball card status as opposed to some of the other 1947-48 contenders, and comes from the least minor release of its contemporaries and predecessors. At the same time, not all collectors treat the Sport Thrills set as a major release, and the set equally loses some pedigree as one focusing more on highlights than individual players.
Ross is the founder of Old Sports Cards and has been collecting sports cards for over 30 years. He also loves to write about the hobby and has written for Beckett, Topps, SABR and of course, this website. Need help buying or selling cards or have a general question about the hobby? Contact him at [email protected]
In April 2019, Blowout Forums members noticed several notably altered vintage baseball cards in PSA slabs. After some incredibly impressive sleuthing, the members discovered that PWCC, an Oregon-based auction house, had submitted the vast majority of the cards.
Users traced the cards to alleged Long-Island card fraudster Gary Moser. According to repeated allegations, he has been systematically altering genuine sports cards. To be fair, we must add that Moser has never been prosecuted and that he denies all charges.
We still do not know if PSA was in on this (more on that later), but for whatever reason, they did not catch hundreds of fraudulent cards submitted by Moser and sold on PWCC. PWCC is in no way the only company involved in this scandal. Many Moser cards have also popped up on Mile High Card Company and elsewhere.
The card was eventually removed under pressure. After the post received a good deal of traction, the post was removed, and the offending card was presumably returned to the PWCC vault. You can find several other examples on the Blowout Cards Forums as well as on the Net54baseball Vintage forums.
Hundreds of trimmed cards graded by PSA, and the other major grading companies, were sold at inflated prices on PWCC. With that in mind, it is no surprise that many collectors believe PSA was in on the card-trimming scandal. Many also believe it continues to help dishonest auctioneers take advantage of collectors.
PSA received mass submissions from PWCC and others, filled with altered cards. Considering that they are considered the leaders in authentication, many users have difficulty believing they are not in on the scam. Look at this video to get an idea of how jaw-dropping some of these PSA oversights are.
So far, there is only circumstantial evidence of PSA involvement. We did a brief check and found that when the Dom Dimaggio card sold in 2018, it was in the same slab. This seems to hold for all of the known Moser altered cards.
We tend to think of scammers as shady people on the margins of the hobby. However, the sale of trimmed cards had become such a severe problem that the FBI invested considerable human resources into the investigation. After being subpoenaed, PWCC announced it was cooperating with the Feds to bring the scandal to an equitable conclusion.
Even before the massive boom of the last year, sports cards were a big-money business. It attracts some incredibly untrustworthy individuals, and they may be present in any company. So stay alert and rely on the resources provided by your fellow collectors.
Throughout the world, millions of safe-deposit boxes contain countless treasures - items that hold both great sentimental significance and tremendous monetary value. In one of those protective vaults rests a set of 367 cards from the 1952 Topps set, each adorned with the signature of the featured player and graded by PSA.
If Ted Sherman, the collector to whom that safe-deposit box is assigned, were to grant you access to look inside, you would see 367 identically encapsulated cards along with one that stands out from all the rest.
In preparation for that game, I had thumbed through countless baseball cards, in an attempt to find cards of players to ask for autographs during batting practice at the dugout. Of course my parents and grandmother thought I was a dreamer for thinking I could actually get someone to sign one of my cards, but I had heard that players would willingly sign.
I entered Fenway with the wide eyes only a child could have. When I walked up that ramp and saw the green monster and the outfield grass - after watching it on television so many times - it took my breath away. The sheer size, color, and smells of the park sent me into sensory overload. With my plastic freezer bag filled with cards and a pen I headed down to the mob scene which was looking for autographs around the Red Sox dugout.
After reading that note, you may turn to Sherman, who would undoubtedly have a huge grin on his face, and ask why, of all the great 1952 Topps cards in his safe-deposit box, this one is singled out and accompanied by a note that details its provenance?
Ted Sherman (TS): It was the card that started it all for me - my passion for signed cards. I grew up in a small town, Lynnfield, Massachusetts, which is about 20 minutes away from Fenway Park. So I grew up a Red Sox fan, whose heart was broken in the 1986 World Series. I was 10 years old, and I remember staying up late and watching Game Six, being all excited only to see it all blow up in our faces at the end.
I also remember driving home from the beach on weekends with my parents and my grandmother, who was a big Red Sox fan, always wanting to listen to the games on the radio. I remember we would sometimes stop by the baseball card shop on our way home and my grandmother would ask me about various players and cards. Then, in 1989, she took me to a game and that was the game that I got my first card signed by Nick Esasky who was in the home run race that year with Mark McGwire, so it was a huge thing.
It was a terrible signature because the pen I had was running out of ink. But when I got home, my parents couldn't believe that I got it signed. It was such an exciting moment, and it was what first sparked my passion in collecting signed cards. So I still have that card, and I'll never get rid of it. It is very special to me and that is why I wrote the story about it and attached it to the card. I want to make sure that someday, when I'm not around, whoever finds it will know the history behind that card.