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1912 Walter Johnson and Joe Wood Original Photo - The Day of Their Classic Duel!
Starting Bid - $200, Sold For - $600
Original close-up photo of Walter Johnson and Joe Wood shaking hands prior to their epic pitching duel on September 6, 1912, at Fenway Park. The match up between Johnson and Wood that day was one of the most memorable on record. Aside from the fact that Wood and Johnson were the hardest throwers in baseball at the time, the game had tremendous additional significance in that Wood was attempting to break Johnson's record of sixteen consecutive wins (since broken), a mark set earlier in the season. That Joe Wood entered this game with thirteen consecutive wins, the drama of the pitching duel itself, and the fact that Johnson was being given the opportunity to personally defend his record, resulted in an overflow crowd at Fenway Park. The Boston faithful certainly received their money's worth that day, as Wood blanked Johnson and the Senators by a score of 1-0. Wood eventually tied Johnson's record of sixteen consecutive wins before losing to the Tigers on September 20. For the season, Wood finished with League highs in both wins (34) and shutouts (10) while recording 258 strikeouts and a 1.91 ERA. Although those numbers are certainly extraordinary, his mark for both strikeouts and ERA were topped by another pitcher that summer: Walter Johnson.
This is the only close-up image of both pitchers from that legendary game that we have ever seen. In addition to its historic significance and exceptional visual appeal, this photograph is all the more desirable in that originates directly from the Walter Johnson family! Our consignor purchased this photo at auction in 2013, at which time it came with an LOA (since lost) from renowned Washington Senators collector Kent Feddeman, who wrote that he purchased it directly from a member of the Johnson family. The photo was one of many in Mrs. Walter Johnson's personal scrapbook. As was common practice for Mrs. Johnson, she identified Joe Wood by name in black fountain pen upon his image, while also writing "Walter & Joe Woods" on the reverse in pencil. The photo (7.5 x 7.5 inches), which may have been trimmed to its current dimensions, displays a number of moderate creases, as well as a small tear in the upper left corner that has been repaired on the front and reverse with clear tape. Paper residue is evident on the reverse as a result of its removal from the album. In Very Good condition overall. SOLD FOR $600
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