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1923 Yankee Stadium Opening-Day Ticket Stub with Date Printed on Stub!!!! - Newly Discovered Example
Starting Bid - $1,000, Sold For - $9,000
Exceedingly rare and extraordinary ticket stub from the first game ever played at Yankee Stadium, on April 18, 1923. Encapsulated and certified as "Authentic" by SGC. This is one of the most elusive and desirable ticket stubs in the hobby and we know of only five other examples. This ticket, however, differs significantly from most other examples in that it is just the third known 1923 Yankee Stadium opening-day ticket stub that actually includes the date of the game printed on the front! Incredibly, this ticket was just recently found tucked inside of a newly discovered 1923 New York Yankees opening day program. (The program is being offered separately in this auction.) This ticket, which cost $2.20 (an extremely substantial sum for a game ticket in 1923), is for an "Upper Box," and bears the date "Wednesday April 18th" printed on the front. The ticket stub (2.75 x 1.25 inches) displays a moderate diagonal crease in the upper left, a smaller crease in the lower right, and a tiny hole near the center. In Good to Very Good condition overall. As a point of reference, the only other dated 1923 Yankee Stadium Opening Day ticket stub we have ever offered sold for $19,200 in our October 2014 auction (Lot 881).
Yankee Stadium is the most famous sports venue in America and its opening in 1923 heralded the start of baseball's greatest dynasty. Over 74,200 fans jammed the stadium on April 18th to witness the game between the Yankees and the Boston Red Sox, and it was reported that another 25,000 people were turned away at the gates. (Coincidentally, the Yankees were the opponents for Boston during the first game at Fenway Park in 1912.) One of the main reasons for all of the excitement was the fact that the Yankees would finally have a home park to call their own. Since 1913 the Yankees had been playing their home games at the Polo Grounds, where they were simply tenants of the New York Giants. When Ruth joined the Yankees in 1920, the Giants found themselves in an embarrassing position: the Yankees were outdrawing them. Finding such a situation intolerable, the Giants basically evicted the Yankees after the 1922 season. Not a man to cross, Yankees owner Jacob Ruppert purposely built Yankee Stadium just a quarter mile south of the Polo Grounds and demanded that it be built in record time: 185 working days. At the time of its construction, Yankee Stadium, which was the first ballpark to be called a stadium, was double the size of any existing ballpark. Prior to the opening game, Babe Ruth was quoted as saying "I'd give a year of my life if I can hit a home run in this first game in this new park." The baseball gods must have been looking kindly upon Ruth that day, for in the third inning he got his wish, blasting a towering three-run homer into the right-field bleachers off pitcher Howard Ehmke. With Bob Shawkey limiting the Red Sox to just one run, Ruth's home run proved the difference in the Yankees historic 4-1 victory that afternoon. Following the game, legendary sportswriter Fred Lieb, writing in the Evening Telegram, dubbed the Yankees' new home "The House That Ruth Built," and it has remained so in the hearts and minds of fans ever since. Reserve $1,000. Estimate (open). SOLD FOR $9,000
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