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Lot # 1253 (1253 of 1911)   « Previous Lot | Next Lot »

Extraordinary Rube Marquard Single-Signed "Stat" Ball

Starting Bid - $500, Sold For - $2,700

Single-signed "stat" balls, which are rare for all players as they require so much time, effort, and thought (compared to just signing a ball), have understandably always been extremely popular with collectors because the information provided in the player's hand over and above the signature creates a single-signed ball that towers above a traditional signed ball in significance. That is certainly the case for this rare Rube Marquard "stat" ball dating from the 1970s. The Hall of Fame pitcher has beautifully scripted notations regarding his major league career on all five panels of this Spalding "Official Little League" ball. His salutation to the original recipient transverses both the sweet spot and the west panel: "To my friend Mr. Miller/with my personal regards." The ensuing inscriptions, appearing on the north, south, and east panels, respectively, read as follows: 1) "From 'Rube' Marquard of the New York Giants and the Hall of Fame in which I was inducted on Aug, 9th/71 in Cooperstown New York." 2) "In 1912 I made a worlds record 19 straight games and for the season of 1912 I won 26 games and 2 in the World Series against the Boston Red Sox score 2-1 - 3-2." 3) "Was in the National League 19 years in five World Series with N.Y. Giants 1911-1912-1913 with Brooklyn 1916-1920." All of the notations, including Marquard's signature, have been executed in black ink and grade "8" overall. This ball can be conclusively dated to the 1970s because Marquard was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1971 (which he mentions on the ball) and died in 1980 at the age of ninety-three. That time period was well before the practice of players adding personal stats to balls became common. While Marquard's signature would have been in high demand following his 1971 Hall of Fame induction, it seems inconceivable that he signed many balls in the manner seen here. Indeed, this Marquard "stat" ball may very well be unique, as we have never seen another example. This is undoubtedly the ultimate Rube Marquard single-signed ball and one that would be a significant addition to even the most advanced Hall of Fame single-signed ball collection. The ball displays a few tiny areas of light age toning, and a small, minor abrasion on the east panel (slightly affecting a portion of the inscription, but all of the words are still legible). In Excellent condition overall. Full LOA from James Spence/JSA.
SOLD FOR $2,700

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