1966 Bazooka Complete Box with Mickey Mantle - PSA EX 5
Other than the usual mainstream cards issued by the Topps and Bowman Gum Companies, many of the most desirable Mickey Mantle cards are other gum cards, those of which were issued by Bazooka Gum. From the late 1950s through the 1960s, Bazooka issued boxes of individually wrapped pink chewy confection with cards of the best Major Leaguers on the back panel. Usually issued in three-card panels, which were to be cut off by the young collector, high grade examples are certainly a challenge to locate. Young, eager hands weren't the most adept at "trimming" these cards off the boxes, with shelf life and shipping also keeping down high grade examples due to scratching and other surface damage. While high grade panels are certainly difficult, unused Bazooka boxes are a tremendous rarity! Leland's offers a newly found complete Bazooka box, containing one of the most attractive examples of the 1966 Bazooka Mickey Mantle panel, which The Mick also shares with stalwarts Ed Kranepool of the New York Mets and Leon Wagner of the Cleveland Indians. Graded by PSA as EX 5, the box certainly displays much nicer, with the technical grade far removed from the eye appeal. The actual panel has minimal surface wear, and the colors are bright and the features crisp. There is a light crease on one of the flaps, which does not interfere with any of the cards, and does not detract for the box's overall appearance. As mentioned, the eye appeal is tremendous and the box, which has never been used to house bubble gum, has Near Mint or better appearance. According to the PSA population report, this is one of seven Mantle complete boxes graded by PSA, is one of three graded PSA EX 5 with only two higher. Of the total amount graded, very few would have the eye appeal of this newly discovered gem.