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Lot # 902 (of 1866)   < Previous Lot | Next Lot >

1928-1929 Boston Braves Team-Signed Ball with Rogers Hornsby, George Sisler, and Rabbit Maranville

Starting Bid - $300, Sold For - $1,185

Official National League (Heydler) ball signed in black fountain pen by nineteen players who were with the Boston Braves in either 1928 or 1929. The signatures represented here are those of Rogers Hornsby (blue fountain pen; he was player/manager for part of the season in 1928), George Sisler, Rabbit Maranville, Les Bell, Lance Richbourg, Earl Clark, George Harper, Al Spohrer, Johnny Cooney, Jack Smith, Doc Farrell, Ed Brandt, Art Delaney, Kent Greenfield (on the ball label), Foster Edwards, Howard Freigau, Bill Clarkson, John Roser, and Eddie Brown. The signatures range from "4" to "9," averaging "7." The vintage black-ink notation "1929" is written on the sweet spot. Despite that year designation, this ball does not conclusively date from 1929, as a number of the players on the ball were with the club in 1928, but not 1929. There is the possibility that it was signed in spring training of 1929, as John Roser did not make the team in either 1928 or 1929, but then Hornsby's signature must have been obtained at a later date, as he was traded to the Cubs in November 1928 and would not have been in camp with the Braves in 1929. The most likely explanation is that this ball was signed over a period of two years, probably including spring training of 1929.

This ball has an outstanding provenance, as it originates from the collection of William Chotiner of West Hartford, Connecticut. Chotiner was a prominent local businessman who was closely affiliated with Hartford's minor-league team beginning in the 1920s. He also owned "Kahn's Kings," a fast-pitch softball team for which he both played and managed until the age of 61 and then continued to manage for many more years. Mr. Chotiner was a fixture for decades at the Bulkeley Stadium in Hartford and later served as an Eastern League executive. During his many years in baseball, he was able to assemble a remarkable collection of autographed baseballs, which included both this ball and a House of David signed ball, which is also offered in this auction. The ball is moderately toned, with a few minor surface abrasions. The manufacturer's labels are only partially legible. In Very Good condition overall. LOA from James Spence/JSA. Reserve $300. Estimate $500/$1,000. SOLD FOR $1,185

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