Ordering Information

$35.00, 9.25 x 11.5, hardcover, 248 pages, full color throughout, index
ISBN: 978-1-942155-31-7
To order copies visit Tom Zappala Media

Baseball & Bubble Gum
The 1952 Topps Collection

by Tom Zappala and Ellen Zappala, with John Molori
Foreword and contributions by Joe Orlando

Including a tribute to Sy Berger by Glenn Berger

Fun and fascinating information will be found in the BASEBALL story of every player in the 1952 Topps Collection.

  • This player had a grand total of 25 at-bats in the majors but won more than 1,600 games as a minor-league manager.
  • This lefty lost 20 games and still made the All-Star team that same season.
  • While on guard duty in the US Army, this catcher single-handedly captured two German soldiers during World War II.
  • This Red Sox Hall of Famer ended his career early because of his fear of flying.
  • Although this ballplayer was up for only one season, he went on to get his PhD and became a very successful educator.
  • Had a nurse not prevented this player from losing his leg by convincing doctors to treat his World War II battle wound with a new experimental drug called penicillin, he never would have gone on to a ten-year Major League career.

“The popularity of Topps baseball cards kept the careers of players like me ‘alive’ for decades after our retirement. As a player featured in the 1952 Topps set, I enjoyed reading Baseball & Bubble Gum. The stories about the players brought back memories of a great time in my life and a great time in the game of baseball. Excellent read!”

— Carl Erskine, All-Star pitcher and member of the 1955 Dodgers World Series Champions

“Tom & Ellen have hit another homerun with Baseball & Bubble Gum, their book about the 1952 Topps Collection. It is my all-time favorite set and the first that I collected as young boy. Well done!”

— Ken Kendrick, Managing General Partner, Arizona Diamondbacks

“Baseball & Bubble Gum is a blast of nostalgia for everyone who remembers the stars of the 1950s! Baseball fanatics and
history buffs alike will love these brilliant images of—and fascinating insights into—the classic 1952 Topps baseball card
set, justly regarded as one of the great trading-card sets in the hobby.”

— Edward Achorn, author of The Summer of Beer and Whiskey and Fifty-nine in ’84.

About the Authors

Tom Zappala, a businessman in the greater Boston area, is passionate about maintaining the traditions and historical signifcance of our National Pastime. He co-authored The T206 Collection: The Players & Their Stories, The Cracker Jack Collection: Baseball’s Prized Players, The 100 Greatest Baseball Autographs, Legendary Lumber: The Top 100 Player Bats in Baseball History, and An All-Star’s Cardboard Memories. In addition to his popular Boston area radio talk show, Zappala co-hosts  The Great American Collectibles Show with Red Sox Hall of Famer Rico Petrocelli, which airs nationally every week. He enjoys collecting vintage memorabilia for the love of the sport. Visit the author website, Tom Zappala Media.

Ellen Zappala is president of ATS Communications, a multimedia marketing and consulting company. Co-author of  The T206 Collection:  The Players &  Their Stories,  The Cracker Jack Collection: Baseball’s Prized Players,  The 100 Greatest Baseball Autographs, Legendary Lumber:  The Top 100 Player Bats in Baseball History, An All-Star’s Cardboard Memories, and Nardo: Memoirs of a Boxing Champion, Zappala is a former newspaper publisher and a former president of the New England Press Association. She enjoys bringing the stories of Deadball Era and Golden Age players to life.