1954 Red Heart Baseball Cards
Baseball cards have been issued with a wide assortment of products over the years, but this one is probably the only one issued in conjunction with a brand of dog food. It was available beginning in 1954 as a mail-in offer for labels of the different flavors of Red Heart, and was apparently still available through the company as recently as the early 1970s. While the fact that they were still available so many years after they were issued, there was a lessened demand for the cards in the hobby for a while, but that has eased considerably. The set is now considered to be one of the classic sets among collectors of 1950s cards.
There were 33 cards in the complete set. They were issued in three separate series of eleven unnumbered cards. Each series was given a distinctive solid background color behind the player's picture: blue, green, or red. The series with a red background is tougher than those with blue or green. A diamond-shaped box appears below the player with the player's name, and his team name is listed at the bottom. Backs feature the player's full name, position and team name, as well as his biographical info. Statistics for 1953 and career are shown, as is an advertisement for Red Heart.
Considering the small size of the set, most cards feature stars of the era. The two biggest are Mickey Mantle and Stan Musial, and neither were in the Topps set that year. Musial wasn't in the Bowman set, either, which makes this card especially prized. The fact that Musial is one of the red background cards makes it even more special.
Key 1954 Red Heart Baseball Cards:
1954 Red Heart Carl Erskine SP Short Print Brooklyn Dodgers Star
1954 Red Heart Gus Bell Ex Mint Nice!
1954 Red Heart SETBREAK Richie Ashburn PSA 8 NM-MT (PWCC)
1954 Red Heart SETBREAK Frankie Baumholtz PSA 7 NRMT (PWCC)
1954 Red Heart Baseball Card Checklist
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