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1909/1910 Detroit Tigers Team-Signed Ball with Cobb and Jennings (Earliest Known Cobb Signature on a Baseball!)
Starting Bid - $1,000, Sold For - $6,518
Offered here is an incredibly early Detroit Tigers team-signed ball, most likely dating from 1909 (but may possibly date from 1910), that holds a number of important distinctions. To the best of our knowledge, this is not only the earliest Detroit Tigers team-signed ball in the hobby, but one of the earliest major league team-signed balls extant (JSA has evaluated a 1907 St. Louis team-signed ball). As such, it features the earliest-known example of a Ty Cobb signature on a baseball! The red-and-blue stitched official American League (Johnson) ball features the black fountain pen signatures of the following Tigers team members: Ty Cobb ("6," alone on a side panel), Hughie Jennings (Mgr., "4"), Sam Crawford ("2/3"), Bill Donovan, George Mullin, Heinie Beckandorf, Matty McIntyre, Charles O'Leary, and one other (illegible). Signatures range from "1" to "6," averaging "3." All of the players represented here were members of the Tigers in both 1909 and 1910; however, Beckandorf was traded to the Senators on June 30, 1910, making it slightly more probable that the ball dates from the 1909 season. The Tigers captured their third consecutive pennant in 1909, only to once again come up short in the World Series, losing to Pittsburgh in seven games. Unfortunately, the 1909 World Series marked Cobb's final postseason appearance, as he never again played on a pennant-winning club. Our consignor obtained this ball from a gentleman in Tennessee, who said it had been in his family's possession as long as anyone could remember. Therefore, our consignor is just the second owner of this ball and it is being offered at auction for the very first time. Ideally, our consignor is none other than the highly respected autograph expert and authenticator Kevin Keating! Keating has supplied a detailed letter of provenance which accompanies. The ball is heavily soiled, with a number of minor abrasions, indicating that it might have been a game-used ball. In Good condition overall. Letter of Provenance from Kevin Keating and Full LOA from James Spence/JSA. Reserve $1,000. Estimate (open). SOLD FOR $6,518
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