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1984 U.S. Olympic Baseball Team Ring
Starting Bid - $1,000, Sold For - $1,680
Rare and historically significant 1984 Olympic baseball ring issued by the International Baseball Association (AINBA). The 10K-gold ring, produced by Josten's, features a single diamond set within a red stone on the front. Two smaller diamonds are positioned on the interior bezel. The outer bezel reads "1984 Olympic Baseball," while the inner bezel reads "Dodger Stadium." One shank features an image of a batter set against a baseball-diamond background, with initials "AINBA" (International Baseball Association) incorporated into the design. The year, "1984," appears below. The opposite shank features the Olympic logo, as well as the locale and year, "Los Angeles 1984." Engraved on the interior band are the name of the recipient, "Bob Whiting," and "Josten's 10K." This ring was most likely issued to American writer Robert Whiting, who lives in Japan and has written extensively on Japanese baseball and sports in general. While the accompanying letter from noted ring expert Scott Welkowsky identifies Robert Whiting as a coach to the team, we are not certain this is accurate. (Although it is possible he was an honorary coach; it is also possible that he received this ring as a show of great respect for his role as a writer and historian; as noted below, Commissioner Bowie Kuhn also received a ring as a show of respect, as opposed to being a coach or member of the team). 1984 marked the first year in which baseball was held as a full demonstration event at the Olympics. Eight teams competed in the initial tournament, with Japan ultimately defeating the United States in the championship game. We do not know how many of these rings were issued for the event, or who was entitled to receive one. However, we do know that they are rare. Aside from this ring, the only other example we have seen was one issued to former baseball commissioner Bowie Kuhn. The ring displays light wear and remains in Near Mint condition. Size: approximately 10.5. Weight: approximately 20 grams.
SOLD FOR $1,680
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