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1957 Ralph Kiner Signed San Diego Padres Contract (Pacific Coast League)
Starting Bid - $100, Sold For - $120
Four-page fold-over contract, dated February 17, 1957, between Charles Kolakowski and the San Diego Baseball Club, signed in blue ink by Charles Kolakowski and Hall of Fame outfielder "Ralph M. Kiner" (grading "10") in his capacity as general manager. Also signed by the league president. The one-year agreement, for the 1957 season, calls for Kolakowski to receive a salary of $400 per month. Ralph Kiner was one of the game's greatest sluggers. Beginning with his rookie season of 1946, Kiner led or tied the National League in home runs in each of his first seven seasons (the only player to ever accomplish that feat), including totals of 51 and 54 home runs, respectively, in 1947 and 1949. Although he only played ten seasons, Kiner retired with 369 home runs and 1,015 RBI. He also batted over .300 on three separate occasions and finished his career with a respectable .279 lifetime average. Today, Kiner's home-run ratio of 14.11 ranks fourth all time among retired players. He was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1975. Actual Kiner playing contracts are scarce and even though we recall a number of Kiner contracts being traded to collectors decades ago by then Pirates General Manager Joe Brown (who was also a collector) few have ever resurfaced at auction. This example, therefore, serves as a fine alternative to those who have been unsuccessful in obtaining a Kiner playing contract, but would like to have a representative sample in their collection. The contract (8.5 x 11 inches) displays two horizontal folds and is in Excellent to Mint condition. Disclosure per section 13 of REA's terms and conditions: This lot has been consigned from the personal collection of an executive or employee of Robert Edward Auctions (or a relative of an executive or employee). LOA from James Spence/JSA. Reserve $100. Estimate $300+. SOLD FOR $120
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