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Lot # 911 (of 1389)   < Previous Lot | Next Lot >

Rare 1951 Eddie Gaedel News Photo

Starting Bid - $200, Sold For - $300

Exceedingly rare news photo of Eddie Gaedel prior to his historic major league debut with the St. Louis Browns on August 19, 1951, at Sportsman's Park. The charming photo captures Browns manager Zack Taylor tying the laces on Gaedel's cleats as a Browns coach and batboy look on in amusement. Gaedel, of course, was not your average player, but a "little person" whose career was limited to just one at bat before the rules of baseball were immediately revised to forbid players of such small stature. Hired by Bill Veeck to take part in his greatest publicity stunt, Gaedel, who stood three-feet, seven-inches, and weighed sixty-five pounds (the smallest major league player on record), appeared as a pinch hitter for the St. Louis Browns in the first inning of the second game of a doubleheader against Detroit at Sportsman's Park in St. Louis on August 19, 1951. After walking on four straight pitches Gaedel was immediately replaced by a pinch runner, thereby ending his brief Major League career. While the photo of Gaedel at the plate during the game is one of the most famous of all baseball images, it is practically the only one ever seen of Gaedel in uniform from that day. With the exception of the offered photo, we cannot recall having seen any other news photos of Gaedel, on or off the field, during that historic day. This photo, as noted by the credit stamp on the reverse, was taken by noted St. Louis sports photographer George Dorrill, who worked for The Sporting News. While we do not know if this image ever appeared in either The Sporting News or a local paper at the time, it remains an especially rare and historically significant photo commemorating Gaedel's one-game career. The photo (10 x 8 inches) displays a number of light-to-moderate creases and is in Very Good condition overall. SOLD FOR $300

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