1955 Topps Harry Agganis

The 1955 Topps set appeared with a bold change. This was the first year that the company issued an entire set in a horizontal format. The company still faced competition from Bowman and several important players were missed by Topps and signed to Bowman card contracts (most notably Mickey Mantle, Whitey Ford and Roy Campanella). Topps may have lost the battle against Bowman, but they won the war. At the end of the year, they were able to buy their rival and enjoy a near monopoly that would continue for the next 25 years. The smaller number of cards and lack of the always high-priced Mantle make this a very popular set to collect. It remains an affordable set for modern collectors who want a classic 1950s set without taking out a second mortgage.

Number of Cards

At 206 cards, this set remains the smallest of the regular Topps issues. It was intended to be a 210 card set, but for reasons unknown (contractual obligations?) numbers 175, 186, 203 and 209 were never issued. It was many a young fan that probably expressed dismay at never locating the "missing" numbers. The small size makes this a highly attractive set to collectors.

Size of Cards

The horizontal 1955 Topps cards measure the same 3 3/4 by 2 5/8" that was now the standard for the company. This size would last until 1957 when the cards became slightly smaller.

1955 Topps Yogi BerraBasic Features

A colorful background, full figure pose and the giant portrait make for an attractive set. The design is definitely similar to the 1954 set, but still seems fresh. Young collectors probably recognized several portraits as being taken from the set of the previous year. The cards feature colorful team logos and facsimile autographs. The back has biographical information and single season and career stats (either major or minor league). Cartoon trivia boxes or game information add to the fun.

Card Distribution

The cards were issued in 1-cent packs, 5-cent packs with gum and also were issued in a cello pack. The set was again issued in separate series with numbers 151 – 206 commanding a significant premium over the more available early numbers.

1955 Topps Sandy KoufaxKey Cards

The lack of Mickey Mantle or beloved Brooklyn bum Roy Campanella does little to diminish the star power to be found within the set. The Bowman rivalry may have snagged those two stars, but rookie cards of Hall of Famers Roberto Clemente, Sandy Koufax and Harmon Killebrew pack a powerful punch--not to mention tragic figure Harry Agganis (a rising star cut down too quickly). Clemente is the top priced card with very good to excellent examples in the $300 to $500 range and Koufax not far behind. Other HOF members include Willie Mays, Yogi Berra, Hank Aaron, Jackie Robinson, Duke Snider, Ted Williams, Ernie Banks and Warren Spahn just to name a few. The last series presents a challenge to collectors with cards such as Gene Freese bringing a significant premium in top condition.