June 2018 Auction
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This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on 6/22/2018
Of the original five inductees in the baseball Hall of Fame, legendary pitcher Christy Mathewson is the one that history knows least about. The life stories of Ruth, Cobb, Wagner and Walter Johnson are well documented, but Mathewson remains more a mystery for several reasons. First of all, he didn't fit the mold of a baseball player from the time period. While others were generally viewed as sophomoric hooligans who spent their free time gambling, boozing, or womanizing, Mathewson was refined and educated, having attended high school at the exclusive Keystone Academy before honing his craft at Bucknell University. His clean cut, intellectual demeanor and devout beliefs (he never pitched on Sunday) earned him the nickname "The Christian Gentleman" and helped improve the image of the sport. Oh, But Mathewson was no gentleman on the mound! His blazing fastball, pinpoint accuracy and "fadeaway" (later known as the screwball) propelled him to 373 lifetime victories and four World Series appearances with the New York Giants. Following his retirement in 1916, Mathewson served in the Chemical Warfare Service of the United States Army during World War I and was accidentally exposed to mustard gas during training. Though he survived the ordeal, his respiratory system was weakened and he contracted tuberculosis, which took his life in 1925. One of the great legends in baseball history was gone at the age of 45, depriving the collecting hobby of all but just a few examples of Mathewson's harmonious signature. Even Commissioner Kenesaw Mountain Landis, known for his curmudgeonly disdain for the lifestyle many of his ballplayers practiced, eulogized Mathewson as "an inspiration to everybody, and may we have more of his kind." If you're fortunate enough to find a genuine Mathewson signing, it's usually on a tattered slip of paper or barely legible on a beaten up baseball. But this ... this is breathtaking! Almost as if Mathewson signed one more piece before his passing and locked it away, perfectly preserved to be found almost a century later, this ONL baseball houses the cleaning, boldest signature of Christy Mathewson known to exist, not just on a baseball but on any surface. With a "yours truly" inscription penned above the perfectly delivered steel top fountain pen signature on a side panel, this Spalding baseball provides the perfect display for one of the most elusive signatures of any Hall of Famer. The manufacturer's stamp is every bit as bold as when it literally rolled out of the Spalding factory, somewhere in the 1915-1924 time period as identified by the markings of the stamp. A screw hole is present above the Spalding brand, likely to mount the ball so that this signature appears perfectly facing forward. Of course, that's of no consequence given the absolute magnificence of this piece of history. It's simply the best there is and the best there ever will be! Full LOA from JSA.
Spectacular Christy Mathewson Single-Signed ONL Ball JSA and Beckett-The Finest Single-Signed Mathewson Ball Known to Exist!Spectacular Christy Mathewson Single-Signed ONL Ball JSA and Beckett-The Finest Single-Signed Mathewson Ball Known to Exist!Spectacular Christy Mathewson Single-Signed ONL Ball JSA and Beckett-The Finest Single-Signed Mathewson Ball Known to Exist!Spectacular Christy Mathewson Single-Signed ONL Ball JSA and Beckett-The Finest Single-Signed Mathewson Ball Known to Exist!
Spectacular Christy Mathewson Single-Signed ONL Ball JSA and Beckett-The Finest Single-Signed Mathewson Ball Known to Exist!
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Bidding
Current Bidding
Minimum Bid: $40,000.00
Final prices include buyers premium.: $76,021.05
Number Bids: 10
Auction closed on Friday, June 22, 2018.
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