1941 Play Ball Baseball Cards

1941 Play Ball Baseball Cards



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1941 Play Ball Baseball was the line's third and final installment before World War II halted the production of cards and severely curtailed gum production. When the war ended, Gum, Inc. resurfaced as the Bowman Gum Company and began its card production anew. That made it one of few pre-war card makers to release cards after the war as well.

At 72 total cards and designated as R336 in the American Card Catalog, 1941 Play Ball Baseball is the smallest of the three sets. However, its aesthetic appeal was improved by having the cards printed in color. This makes it more widely collected than either the 1939 or 1940 sets. In essence, 1941 Play Ball Baseball cards are a colorized version of their 1940 counterparts, except for the fact that the ornate banner with baseball gear has been replaced with a more subdued example containing the player's name and often a nickname. It also happens that many players are shown using the same photographs from that of the 1940 offering.

Incorporating color into the card's design wasn't the only thing that made them stand out; it's the way that color was used. Backgrounds are vivid and sometimes multi-colored. Shadows and perspective are shown. It was a combination of the Art Deco design that made 1934-36 Diamond Stars stand out and the comic art of 1938 Goudey so timeless.

The card backs are similar to the other Play Ball sets, with a lengthy biography. A caption at the bottom reads: "Watch for other famous sports stars, famous fighters, tennis players, football heroes, etc. in this series." The set seems to have been intended as part of a larger "Sports Hall of Fame" set, but the other cards never surfaced. Any cards that are missing that caption simply contain an ad for Blony gum. There are some 1941 Play Ball cards that are printed on paper rather than cardboard. It has been speculated that these cards were part of a promotion.

1941 Play Ball Baseball features a number of stars and Hall of Fame players,with the big three being Joe DiMaggio, Ted Williams and Hank Greenberg. Other players of note include; Bill Dickey, Lefty Gomez, Carl Hubbell, Chuck Klein and Mel Ott. The set also features the rookie-year card of Pee Wee Reese. One notable characteristic of the set, is that it is the only major baseball card issue to feature all three of the DiMaggio brothers (Joe, Dom and Vince). Of the three Play Ball sets, this is perhaps the easiest to complete because of its small number of total cards. In addition, the second series, card #'s 49-72 are only slightly more difficult to locate than those of the first series.

Top eBay Listings

FLOYD "ARKY" VAUGHAN 1941 PLAY BALL #10 PITTSBURGH PIRATES HOF
$24.99

1941 PLAY BALL COMPLETE 1ST & 2ND SERIES BASEBALL CARD SET (82 DIFF) - NM MT!
$24.00

Authentic R336 Play Ball 1941 - Carl Hubbell New York Giants Hall of Fame VG 3?
$50.00

R336 Play Ball 1941 - Hall of Fame Jimmie Foxx - unique anomaly card ghost image
$150.00

HAROLD "HAL" TROSKY BASEBALL CARD 1941 Play Ball #16 EX+ Cleveland Indians SALE!
$15.49

1941 Play Ball:#1 Eddie Miller,Boston Braves
$24.95

1941 Play Ball:#29 Jack Wilson,Red Sox
$19.95

1941 Play Ball:#32 Taft Wright,White Sox
$11.95

1941 Play Ball # 15 Joe Cronin Boston Red Sox Poor 0513
$29.95

1941 PLAY BALL N Y YANKEES CARD # 38 ATLEY DONALD
$29.65

1941 Play Ball #46 "SID" HUDSON Washington Senators Ex Mt
$9.99

1941 Play Ball #43 ALBERT BRANCATO Phila. Athletics Ex Mt
$9.99

2 1941 Play Ball # 7 Hasrry Danning G VG & VG EX
$8.00

1941 Play Ball #33 Happy Milnar - Indians 1 of 1
$80.00

1941 Play Ball #6 Carl Hubbell VG EX 14741
$64.95

1941 Play Ball #22 Bob Johnson VG D235
$55.00
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Set Checklist

Set Checklist

Base Set Checklist

Featuring 72 cards

1 Eddie Miller
 2 Max West
 3 Bucky Walters
 4 Duke Derringer
 5 Buck McCormick
 6 Carl Hubbell
 7 Harry Danning
 8 Mel Ott
 9 Pinky May
 10 Arky Vaughan
 11 Debs Garms
 12 Jimmy Brown
 13 Jimmie Foxx
 14 Ted Williams
 15 Joe Cronin
 16 Hal Trosky
 17 Roy Weatherly
 18 Hank Greenberg
 19 Charlie Gehringer
 20 Red Ruffing
 21 Charlie Keller
 22 Bob Johnson
 23 George McQuinn
 24 Dutch Leonard
 25 Gene Moore
 26 Harry Gumbert
 27 Babe Young
 28 Joe Marty
 29 Jack Wilson
 30 Lou Finney
 31 Joe Kuhel
 32 Taft Wright
 33 Al Milnar
 34 Rollie Hemsley
 35 Pinky Higgins
 36 Barney McCosky
 37 Soupy Campbell RC
 38 Atley Donald
 39 Tommy Henrich
 40 Johnny Babich
 41 Frankie Hayes
 42 Wally Moses
 43 Al Brancato RC
 44 Sam Chapman
 45 Elden Auker
 46 Sid Hudson RC
 47 Buddy Lewis
 48 Cecil Travis
 49 Babe Dahlgren
 50 Johnny Cooney
 51 Dolph Camilli
 52 Kirby Higbe RC
 53 Luke Hamlin
 54 Pee Wee Reese RC
 55 Whit Wyatt
 56 Vandy Vander Meer RC
 57 Morrie Arnovich
 58 Frank Demaree
 59 Billy Jurges
 60 Chuck Klein
 61 Vince DiMaggio RC
 62 Elbie Fletcher
 63 Dom DiMaggio RC
 64 Bobby Doerr
 65 Tommy Bridges
 66 Harlond Clift RC
 67 Walt Judnich RC
 68 Jack Knott
 69 George Case
 70 Bill Dickey
 71 Joe DiMaggio
 72 Lefty Gomez
1941 Play Ball Ted Williams

Top eBay Listings

1941 Play Ball #18 - Hank Greenberg - SGC 80 -- Detroit Tigers HoF (mikedenero)
$260.00

1941 Play Ball #18 - Hank Greenberg - SGC 70 -- Detroit Tigers HoF (mikedenero)
$200.00

Harry Gunboat Gumbert 26 HA Originals 1941 Framed Play Ball Cut Signature PSA 8
$59.21

1941 Play Ball 60 Chuck Klein BVG 7 NM
$265.00

1941 PLAY BALL # 18 HANK GREENBERG TIGERS PSA 6 EX-MT 266929
$350.00

1941 Play Ball, #26, Harry Gumbert, PSA-4, VG-EX
$45.00

1941 Play Ball #18 Hank Greenberg PSA GOOD 2 *8893
$109.00

1941 Play Ball Baseball #064 Bobby Doerr PSA 8 NM-MT
$750.00

1941 PLAY BALL JACK KNOTT # 68 PSA 3
$17.85

RARE 1941 PLAY BALL SAM CHAPMAN #44 w COPYRIGHT DATE - PSA 4 VG EX, 1st ISSUE
$38.69

1941 PLAY BALL # 14 TED WILLIAMS RED SOX SGC 40 VG 216877
$550.00

1941 PLAY BALL #62 ELBIE FLETCHER PSA 8 NM-MT PIRATES RARE + TED WILLIAMS RP
$79.00

1941 Play Ball BILL DICKEY #70 New York Yankees - PSA 8
$1,275.00

2003 UPPER DECK PLAY BALL 1941 RP #R1 TED WILLIAMS HOF POP 4 PSA 10 B1557627-086
$12.99

1941 Play Ball, #40, Johnny Babich, PSA-5, EX
$54.95

1941 Play Ball, #45, Elden Auker, PSA-2, GOOD
$24.95
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Chris is an avid vintage sports card collector who is The Cardboard Connection's resident expert of all things vintage.

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  1. i have a 1941 vintage ted williams #10 outfielder with the boston red sox i want to sell email me at joe.cuellar68@yahoo.com

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