1954 Topps Baseball Cards

1954 Topps Baseball Cards

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The 1954 Topps Baseball set consists of a 250 card checklist which was headlined by the rookie cards of several of the greatest baseball players of all time (Hank Aaron, Al Kaline, and Ernie Banks) as well as key vintage cards of Hall of Famers Willie Mays, Duke Snider, Yogi Berra, Whitey Ford, and Jackie Robinson. As impressive as the player checklist is there are several glaring and noticeable omissions. The battle of player exclusive contracts isn't new to the hobby and in 1954, Bowman was able to secure the exclusive baseball card rights to Mickey Mantle, Pee Wee Reese and Roy Campanella, thereby preventing their inclusion in 1954 Topps Baseball.

Distribution and Design

Distributed in three different series; Series 1- card #'s 1-50, Series 2 card #'s 51-75, and Series 3 card #'s 76-250, the 1954 Topps Baseball set would be the first set produced without any short prints. Interesting to note is that cards of the first series have grey variations which originated from Canada, in addition to the standard white background of the cards that were sold in the United States. Despite the Hall of Fame rookie dominated checklist, it is actually one of the easier vintage sets to complete being as there are no short prints to chase.. From a design standpoint, the cards are slightly over-sized in the height dimension, measuring 2 5/8 x 3 3/4 inches. For the first time ever, on a Topps set, the cards featured multiple photographs; a colorized player portrait and a black and white action shot. Set in the foreground against a variety of colorful backgrounds the cards also display the player's name, position, team logo and facsimile signature. The back of the card provides both statistical and biographical information about the player. Also included are the respective card's number, a write-up about the player's career, and a cartoon frame of either one to three animated photos within a box titled "inside baseball", which depict further insight about the player/coach. The card back's can be found in one of five different colors; green, white, red, black, or flesh tone.

A Crucial Error

One of the most unique, and frustrating quirks for collectors regarding the 1954 set is the orientation of the card backs. The 1954 Topps cards purposely do not have a white border on the top of the card. This was because the tops of the cards were lined-up against those of the next row on the printing sheet. What resulted is that half of the cards were printed upside down in essence. Unfortunately, the press operator clearly forgot to orient the card backs accordingly. So if you go to a card show today and thumb through a box of 1954 Topps you'll find that, one-half of the cards have the card number at the top of the card and one-half have it at the bottom. Thankfully for collectors, this is the only occurrence of such a blatant printing error of this magnitude.

"Teddy Ballgame"

Amidst all the rivalry between Bowman and Topps to sign players to exclusive contracts, Topps landed its biggest coup when they secured the rights to produce cards of returning veteran, Ted Williams. One of the game's all-time greatest players and fan favorites, Williams' inclusion in the set proved to be a key turning point for the company in regards to market share. With a willingness to out-spend its competitor, Topps laid the foundation for what would eventually become an almost thirty-year monopoly in the baseball card market. To capitalize on their investment, Topps produced two cards of the Splendid Splinter. Book-ending the set with card numbers 1 and 250, these cards are often found suffering from the notorious condition issues prevalent to the first and last cards of most vintage era trading card sets. Finding these cards in high-grade condition, free of creases and edge wear, adds a distinct premium to their overall value.

Key Cards

Key 1954 Topps Baseball Cards:

Hank Aaron RC #128

1954 Topps Hank Aaron 210x300 Image

Ernie Banks RC #94

1954 Topps Ernie Banks 208x300 Image

Al Kaline RC #201

1954 Topps Al Kaline 207x300 Image

Ted Williams #1

1954 Topps Ted Williams 207x300 Image

Tom Lasorda RC #132

1954 Topps Tommy Lasorda 212x300 Image

Ted Williams #250

1954 Topps Ted Williams 2 208x300 Image

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Set Checklist

1954 Topps Baseball Cards Card Checklist

Card #Player Name
1Ted Williams
1BASETed Williams Grey Back
2Gus Zernial
2BASEGus Zernial Grey Back
3Monte Irvin
3BASEMonte Irvin Grey Back
4Hankuer
4BASEHankuer Grey Back
5Ed Lopat
5BASEEd Lopat Grey Back
6Pete Runnels
6BASEPete Runnels Grey Back
7Ted Kluszewski
7BASETed Kluszewski Grey Back
8Bob Young
8BASEBob Young Grey Back
9Harvey Haddix
9BASEHarvey Haddix Grey Back
10Jackie Robinson
10BASEJackie Robinson Grey Back
11Paul Leslie Smith RC
11BASEPaul Leslie Smith Grey Back
12Del Crandall
12BASEDel Crandall Grey Back
13Billy Martin
13BASEBilly Martin Grey Back
14Preacher Roe Error
14BASEPreacher Roe Grey Back
15Al Rosen
15BASEAl Rosen Grey Back
16Vic Janowicz
16BASEVic Janowicz Grey Back
17Phil Rizzuto
17BASEPhil Rizzuto Grey Back
18Walt Dropo
18BASEWalt Dropo Grey Back
19Johnny Lipon
19BASEJohnny Lipon Grey Back
20Warren Spahn
20BASEWarren Spahn Grey Back
21Bobby Shantz
21BASEBobby Shantz Grey Back
22Jim Greengrass
22BASEJim Greengrass Grey Back
23Luke Easter
23BASELuke Easter Grey Back
24Granny Hamner
24BASEGranny Hamner Grey Back
25Harvey Kuenn RC
25BASEHarvey Kuenn Grey Back
26Ray Jablonski
26BASERay Jablonski Grey Back
27Ferris Fain
27BASEFerris Fain Grey Back
28Paul Minner
28BASEPaul Minner Grey Back
29Jim Hegan
29BASEJim Hegan Grey Back
30Eddie Mathews
30BASEEddie Mathews Grey Back
31Johnny Klippstein
31BASEJohnny Klippstein Grey Back
32Duke Snider
32BASEDuke Snider Grey Back
33Johnny Schmitz
33BASEJohnny Schmitz Grey Back
34Jim Rivera
34BASEJim Rivera Grey Back
35Jim Gilliam
35BASEJunior Gilliam Grey Back
36Hoyt Wilhelm
36BASEHoyt Wilhelm Grey Back
37Whitey Ford
37BASEWhitey Ford Grey Back
38Eddie Stanky
38BASEEddie Stanky Grey Back
39Sherm Lollar
39BASESherm Lollar Grey Back
40Mel Parnell
40BASEMel Parnell Grey Back
41Willie Jones
41BASEWillie Jones Grey Back
42Don Mueller
42BASEDon Mueller Grey Back
43Dick Groat
43BASEDick Groat Grey Back
44Ned Garver
44BASENed Garver Grey Back
45Richie Ashburn
45BASERichie Ashburn Grey Back
46Ken Raffensberger
46BASEKen Raffensberger Grey Back
47Ellis Kinder
47BASEEllis Kinder Grey Back
48Billy Hunter
48BASEBilly Hunter Grey Back
49Ray Murray
49BASERay Murray Grey Back
50Yogi Berra
50BASEYogi Berra Grey Back
51Johnny Lindell
52Vic Power RC
53Jack Dittmer
54Vern Stephens
55Phil Cavarretta
56Willie Miranda
57Luis Aloma
58Bob Wilson
59Gene Conley
60Frank Baumholtz
61Bob Cain
62Eddie Robinson
63Johnny Pesky
64Hank Thompson
65Bob Swift
66Ted Lepcio
67Jim Willis RC
68Sam Calderone
69Bud Podbielan
70Larry Doby
71Frank Smith
72Preston Ward
73Wayne Terwilliger
74Bill Taylor RC
75Fred Haney RC
76Bob Scheffing
77Ray Boone
78Ted Kazanski RC
79Andy Pafko
80Jackie Jensen
81Dave Hoskins RC
82Milt Bolling
83Joe Collins
84Dick Cole RC
85Bob Turley RC
86Billy Herman
87Roy Face
88Matt Batts
89Howie Pollet
90Willie Mays
91Bob Oldis
92Wally Westlake
93Sid Hudson
94Ernie Banks RC
95Hal Rice
96Charlie Silvera
97Jerald Hal Lane RC
98Joe Black
99Bobby Hofman
100Bob Keegan
101Gene Woodling
102Gil Hodges
103Jim Lemon RC
104Mikendlock
105Andy Carey
106Dick Kokos
107Duane Pillette
108Thornton Kipper RC
109Bill Bruton
110Harry Dorish
111Jim Delsing
112Bill Renna RC
113Bob Boyd
114Dean Stone RC
115Rip Repulski
116Steve Bilko
117Solly Hemus
118Carl Scheib
119Johnny Antonelli
120Roy McMillan
121Clem Labine
122Johnny Logan
123Bobby Adams
124Marion Fricano
125Harry Perkowski
126Ben Wade
127Steve O'Neill
128Hank Aaron RC
129Forrest Jacobs RC
130Hank Bauer
131Reno Bertoia RC
132Tommy Lasorda RC
133Del Baker
134Cal Hogue
135Joe Presko
136Connie Ryan
137Wally Moon RC
138Bob Borkowski
139J.O'Brien / E.O'Brien
140Tom Wright
141Joey Jay RC
142Tom Poholsky
143Rollie Hemsley
144Bill Werle
145Elmer Valo
146Don Johnson
147Johnny Riddle
148Bob Trice RC
149Al Robertson
150Dick Kryhoski
151Alex Grammas RC
152Michael Blyzka RC
153Al Walker
154Mike Fornieles RC
155Bob Kennedy
156Joe Coleman
157Don Lenhardt
158Peanuts Lowrey
159Dave Philley
160Ralph Kress
161John Hetki
162Herman Wehmeier
163Frank House
164Stu Miller
165Jim Pendleton
166Johnny Podres
167Don Lund
168Morrie Martin
169Jim Hughes
170Dusty Rhodes RC
171Leo Kiely
172Harold Brown RC
173Jack Harshman RC
174Tom Qualters RC
175Frank Leja RC
176Robert Keely
177Bob Milliken
178Bill Glynn Error
179Gair Allie RC
180Wes Westrum
181Mel Roach RC
182Chuck Harmon RC
183Earle Combs
184Ed Bailey
185Chuck Stobbs
186Karl Olson
187Heinie Manush
188Dave Jolly RC
189Bob Ross
190Ray Herbert RC
191Dick Schofield RC
192Ellis Deal
193Johnny Hopp
194Billrni RC
195Billy Consolo RC
196Stan Jok RC
197Lynwood Rowe
198Carlwatski
199Glenn Rocky Nelson
200Larry Jansen
201Al Kaline RC
202Bob Purkey RC
203Harry Brecheen
204Angel Scull RC
205Johnnyin
206Ray Crone RC
207Tom Oliver RC
208Grady Hatton
209Chuck Thompson RC
210Bob Buhl RC
211Don Hoak
212Bob Micelotta RC
213Johnny Fitzpatrick RC
214Arnie Portocarrero RC
215Ed McGhee
216Al Sima
217Paul Schreiber RC
218Fred Marsh
219Chuck Kress RC
220Ruben Gomez RC
221Dick Brodowski
222Bill Wilson RC
223Joe Haynes
224Dick Weik RC
225Don Liddle RC
226Jehosie Heard RC
227Buster Mills RC
228Gene Hermanski
229Bob Talbot RC
230Bob Kuzava
231Roy Smalley
232Lou Limmer RC
233Augie Galan
234Jerry Lynch RC
235Vern Law
236Paul Penson RC
237Mike Ryba RC
238Al Aber
239Bill Skowron RC
240Sam Mele
241Robert Miller RC
242Curt Roberts RC
243Ray Blades RC
244Leroy Wheat RC
245Roy Sievers
246Howie Fox
247Ed Mayo
248Al Smith RC
249Wilmer Mizell
250Ted Williams

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