The theory is that the #1 card is difficult to find in high grade (NM or better) due to a lot of them having rubber band marks or just more wear in general usually due to being exposed the most. |
The prices you see in the price guides are for NM cards. Anything below NM and the card starts dropping in value drastically.
That only applies to #1 common cards though such as '53 Williams, '52 Pafko, '55 Rhodes, etc. It really doesn't apply to #1 star cards such as '53 Robinson, '54 Williams, etc. Anything less than NM and those will still drop in value, but not as significantly as a common.
Collecting 1965 Topps High #'s SGC 88 or better: 10/91
BUYING Well Centered:
1956 Topps SGC 84 or Better (or raw equivalent)
1965 Topps SGC 88 or Better (or raw equivalent)