A new record in the world of collectable trading cards has been set thanks to an entrepreneur's willingness to shell out seven figures for a bit of history. It was announced Wednesday that Rob Gough purchased a 1952 Mickey Mantle card for $5.2 million.
The purchase smashes the previous record set by a 2009 Bowman Chrome Draft Prospects Superfactor card of Mike Trout that sold for $3.93 million in August 2020. Just like the Trout card, the Yankees legend's card was certified to be a Mint 9 on the universally accepted grading service for trading cards.
Trout's card was autographed by the player himself and listed as a 1-of-1 based on its serial number. The Mantle card is from a 1952 Topps collection and not only does it not include an autograph, there was also certainly more than one made, and a pack you could get one in in 1952 cost just 5 cents. Still, it is considered to be the Holy Grail of baseball trading cards.
Rob Gough's claim to fame is buying the streetwear brand DOPE in 2017 before selling it in 2020 while retaining the logo trademark with plans to form it into a CBD company, according to the Indianapolis Star. He has purchased Mantle cards in the past, but the previous two he bought were a EX 5 (grade 5 by PSA) and EX-MT 6, the latter of which was sold to Steve Aoki.
He was able to get his hands a Mint 9 Mantle card -- relatively speaking, of course, as it's in a protective case -- after a vintage card company reached out about having one in a vault during Gough's search. After some appraising, research and negotiating, the card was sold at almost double that kind of card's last sale, which was $2.88 million.