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Lot # 1269 (of 1727)   < Previous Lot | Next Lot >

1922 World Series Game 2 Irish Meusel Home Run Ball (Last Tie Game In World Series History)

Starting Bid - $500, Sold For - $1,998

This historic relic is the actual ball hit by New York Giants outfielder Irish Meusel for a three-run home run in Game 2 of the 1922 World Series between the New York Yankees and New York Giants held at the Polo Grounds. The final score of this game was a tie (3-3). There has not been a tie game in the World Series in the eighty-seven years since. Meusel has personally attested to the ball's significance and provenance by neatly printing all of the pertinent information on a side panel in black fountain pen: "Worlds Series - 2nd game - I hit this ball into left field bleachers with two on the bases in 1st inning - signed." Meusel's black fountain pen signature does not appear on the same panel as the inscription, but instead is scripted such that it occupies both a portion of an adjacent side panel and the sweet spot (his surname is almost entirely on the sweet spot). The score of the game, "Giants 3 - Yankees 3" (also printed in black fountain pen), appears alone on another side panel. Meusel's signature is affected by a number of small abrasions, but it remains clearly legible and grades "5/6." His identification notations are stronger in tone and grade "7" overall. As noted on the ball, Meusel's one home run in the Series occurred in the first inning of Game 2 and gave the Giants a quick 3-0 lead. Unfortunately, they were blanked the rest of the way and the Yankees managed to tie the game in the bottom of the eighth inning. The game was eventually called on account of darkness after ten innings, resulting in the only tie of the Series, and only the third tie game in World Series history (the others were in 1907 and 1912). This game actually turned out to be the highlight of the 1922 World Series for the Yankees, who were easily swept by the Giants 4-0. Although he only batted .250, Irish Meusel was clearly the hitting star of the 1922 World Series, driving in a Series-high seven runs (he was also the only Giant to homer in the Series). His stellar performance in the Series must have been especially sweet for Meusel, for not only did it help the Giants capture their second consecutive pennant, but he once again upstaged his more famous brother Bob, who was one of the Yankees' most feared sluggers. (Irish Meusel batted .345 with 1 home run and 7 RBI in the Giants' 1921 World Series victory over the Yankees.) Any World Series home run ball is exceedingly rare, and this is one of the earliest known. The fact that it was hit by a prominent star such as Irish Meusel and is also a single-signed example, makes it all the more desirable. The red-and-blue stitched ball is heavily worn and toned, with numerous minor abrasions. Although the central ball label is no longer legible, the peripheral markings clearly identify it as an official American League baseball (the commissioner's facsimile signature is not visible). While the ball speaks for itself, it is interesting to note that we have reason to believe this ball was purchased long ago from Dick Dobbins, as our consignor (a very old time collector) tells us that at one time it was accompanied by a letter from Dick Dobbins that he has lost. This makes a lot of sense to us as we know that Dick Dobbins in the 1980s sold the entire memorabilia collection of George "Highpockets" Kelly (teammate of Irish Meusel on the 1922 Giants) for the Kelly family. Kelly saved everything and it is very likely that this 1922 World Series home run ball was one of the many items in his collection. In Good to Very Good condition overall. LOA from James Spence/JSA. Reserve $500. Estimate (open). SOLD FOR $1,998

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