Mastro Auctions, the world's leading Sports and Americana auction house, is finalizing plans for a Live Sports Auction that will be held at The Sports Museum of America-the new home of the Heisman Trophy-in New York City on Monday, December 8.
The marquee item of the event will be Charles White's 1979 Heisman Trophy, football's most prestigious and elusive award, especially in the eyes of sports memorabilia collectors. "A collector's ability to own a Heisman is a truly rare occurrence," says Doug Allen, COO and president of Mastro Auctions. "Only a handful of Heisman's have ever become available publicly and each time the sale results in extraordinary bidding interest and a substantial price realized."
Adding to the anticipation of the event is venue and timing. "Just a few days after this amazing item is auctioned, we'll find out in the same building who the 2008 Heisman trophy winner will be," says Allen. "The auction of a Heisman trophy will deliver an exciting lead-in to what is always one of football's most anticipated moments each year."
According to Allen, the record price paid for a Heisman trophy is $395,240. (That record-setting trophy, awarded in 1941, originally belonged to Minnesota halfback Bruce Smith.) Allen believes the bidding on the 1979 Charles White Heisman Trophy could hit the six figure range comfortably.
The "legendary" sports auction will feature two sessions. The first will focus on "Legends of the Gridiron," and this portion will take place on the morning of December 8. Allen says that the Heisman trophy, which will be offered in this session of the live auction, is just a single piece in one of the largest private collections of high-quality football memorabilia ever offered publicly. The collection is composed of more than 250 items, and is dominated by game-used jerseys and helmets worn by Hall of Fame football players, future Hall of Famers, and Heisman Trophy winners.
The second session, "Legends of the Diamond" will occur in the afternoon on the same day. It will feature evocative and historical pieces of baseball memorabilia including game used items, one-of-a-kind display pieces, and high-value baseball cards.
Combined, the two-part unfolding of this unprecedented auction will include hundreds of artifacts, comprising some of the world's most coveted pieces of vintage football and baseball memorabilia. "We are talking about museum quality items," says Allen. "Each piece is historical in nature in terms of what and whom it represents."
"Legends of the Gridiron" Highlights
Specifically, significant football items being offered in Mastro Auctions' "Legends of the Gridiron" session include:
Charles White's 1979 Heisman Trophy
The Heisman Memorial Trophy is truly, as billed, "The Most Prestigious Award in College Football," and one could make a strong argument for its prestige being paramount to any single-player award in sports. In his senior year at USC, Charles White averaged an incredible 194 rushing yards per game, exploding for a 261-yard outing and four touchdowns against Notre Dame. He ultimately received more than double the Heisman voting points of his nearest competitor, Oklahoma's Billy Sims, and soon after, the Trojans dramatically edged out a 17-16 championship win over Ohio State. White's contribution? A Rose Bowl-record 247 yards on the ground, with 71 of those yards coming in USC's 83-yard game-winning drive. The well-preserved Heisman trophy stands 18" tall and weighs approximately 50 pounds. The bronze figure-originally rendered in 1935 by noted sculptor Frank Eliscu, who used NYU star Ed Smith as his model-perches on a plinth which is then mounted atop a trapezoidal black base. The gold-plated plaque reads, "THE HEISMAN MEMORIAL TROPHY IS PRESENTED BY DOWNTOWN ATHLETIC CLUB OF NEW YORK CITY TO CHARLES WHITE UNIVERSITY OF SOUTH CALIFORNIA AS THE OUTSTANDING COLLEGE FOOTBALL PLAYER IN THE UNITED STATES FOR 1979." Estimated value $200,000 - $300,000.
Important 1962-65 Jim Brown Cleveland Browns Signed Home JerseyA mere handful of Brown's game-worn jerseys are known to exist, leaving many advanced collections ruefully absent of any example, let alone a superior one such as this. It is an early- to mid-1960s, trademark-color-scheme Cleveland Browns top worn during the dominant back's prime and later signed by Brown with a notation in his own hand, "Game Jersey." Brown's lightweight long-sleeved jersey features his immortal number "32" in white tackle twill on the front, back and both sleeves. A phenomenal black-marker signature and inscription-rating "10" adorns one of the reverse numerals, "Jim Brown - Game Jersey." Estimated value $50,000 - $75,000.
Johnny Unitas 1970 Baltimore Colts Twice-Signed Game Worn Road Jersey
This awe-inspiring armor hails from Unitas' last great year, 1970, when the aging legend heroically marched Baltimore all the way to Super Sunday and captured his one-and-only Super Bowl ring. The beautiful cream-and-blue durene jersey features the classic Colt arm-stripes on Unitas' trademark three-quarter-length sleeves. His iconic number "19" appears on front, back and both sleeves, while "U-N-I-T-A-S" spans across the shoulder blades. Moderate game use is evident. Two large, brilliant black-marker signatures rate a strong "9-10" in quality. Estimated value $50,000 - $75,000.
Johnny Unitas Circa 1969-70 Baltimore Colts Signed Game Worn Helmet
This rare, game-worn, late-1960s Baltimore Colts helmet truly encapsulates Johnny Unitas' heroic grit and guts. The Riddell "RK2" suspension-style headwear boasts remarkably rugged, heavy evidence of game usage from the latter stage of the legend's career. All of the decals remain firmly affixed, with the blue center-stripe down the middle, the iconic horseshoe logos on each side, and Unitas' uniform number "19" prominently at the rear. Unitas' number "19" is notated in the upper crown. A perfectly positioned signature sits at the top right of the outer shell. It reads "Johnny Unitas," and rates "5-6" in strength and spans 7" in length. Estimated value $20,000 - $30,000.
Ray Nitschke Mid-1960s Green Bay Packers Game Worn Home Jersey
Among the few surviving Nitschke gamers, this exquisite offering is unquestionably the finest. Ray Nitschke's legendarily ferocious play is written all over this battle-worn jersey, which saw extensive game action by the Hall of Fame middle linebacker throughout the heart of the Packers' dominant Lombardi years in the mid-1960s. Ten stitched repairs adorn each side, adding up to a total of 20 visible indicators of the clawing, grasping viciousness of the Golden Age of gridiron. The size-52, "Sand Knit" jersey displays "66" numerals that are original and fully intact. Also, the garment's classic green-and-yellow color design has admirably retained its vividness over the past four decades. Estimated value $20,000 - $30,000.
Jim Taylor 1966 Green Bay Packers Signed Game Worn Home Jersey
In light of its Super-Bowl-I-season dating, its battle-tested wear and its attractive signature sample, this impressive offering is widely acknowledged as the finest Jim Taylor jersey in the hobby. True to his hard-nosed reputation, this Jim Taylor jersey abounds with team-stitched repairs. Clearly, Taylor donned the trusty pullover with regularity and persistence throughout the Green Bay Packers' consequential 1966 campaign. Taylor's green durene jersey features white tackle-twill numerals on the front, back, and both yellow-and-white-striped sleeves. It features a sensational black-marker inscription, "Good Luck - Jim Taylor," which rates "9." Estimated value $20,000 - $30,000.
Incredible Don Maynard 1969 New York Jets Super Bowl III Signed Game Worn Road Jersey
This game-worn durene jersey was worn by Don Maynard during this ultra-historic contest. Maynard played an unusual role in the biggest upset in NFL history. Injured in the second quarter, he continued to take the field for the entire game, serving as a key decoy while Namath lavished attention on receiver George Sauer. Maynard's V-neck, green-and-white uniform top displays his trademark cropped sleeves, cut just below the white tackle-twill number "13," which then appears in larger, green tackle twill on the jersey front and reverse. "M-A-Y-N-A-R-D" stretches across the shoulder blades. Maynard's black-marker "10" signature is on the jersey front, "Don Maynard - Super Bowl III". Estimated value $20,000 - $30,000.
Rare Tom Landry 1950-55 New York Giants Game Worn Jersey
Before he was the architect, commander-in-chief and deity of the Dallas Cowboys, Tom Landry cut his teeth as a defensive back and punter for the New York Giants. It was during that formative period with the Giants that Landry wore this fabulous long-sleeved red durene jersey. The eye-catching gamer-familiar to gridiron card collectors from Landry's 1951 Bowman rookie and other contemporary issues-features moderate use. The white tackle-twill numbers are original. Estimated value $15,000 - $20,000.
Gayle Sayers Mid to Late-1960s Chicago Bears Game Worn Road Jersey
This war-scarred gamer is "hammered." Team repairs litter the chest, shoulders and back. It is important to note that number 40 was not occupied prior to Sayers' 1965 arrival, and the superstar used it exclusively until the end of his Hall of Fame career, at which point Bears uniforms had begun to feature names on the reverse. Therefore, given that the "King O'Shea" size-46 tag on the front left tail pinpoints the time period as late 1963 or early 1964, it is unquestionably true that this jersey belonged to Sayers and only Sayers. Estimated value $10,000 - $15,000.
Dick Butkus Early 1970s NFL Pro Bowl Signed Game Worn Jersey
The stylish cotton/nylon pullover features white tackle-twill lettering of "N-A-T-I-O-N-A-L" across the chest and "B-U-T-K-U-S" across the shoulder blades. Butkus's number "51" appears in white-on-red tackle twill on the front and back, and then again in white tackle twill on the striped sleeves. Both of the large "1" numerals are handsomely signed in black marker, "Dick Butkus #51 HOF '79," rating a strong "10" in quality. Estimated value $10,000 - $15,000.
Joe Namath Early 1970s New York Jets Game Worn Home Jersey
The familiar green-and-white home design consists of white tackle-twill numbers on the front and back, with complementary green tackle-twill numbers on the sleeves, which were cut and hemmed to Namath's specifications. "N-A-M-A-T-H" spans the shoulder blades on a green nameplate. The jersey measures to a size 48, which is correct for a Namath cold-weather gamer. Estimated value $10,000 - $15,000.
1890s-1900s Notre Dame Game Worn Uniform
The mere survival of this seminal set of artifacts is cause for jubilation, but its exquisite preservation elevates the olden-days outfit into an even more elite stratosphere of historical collectibility. Manufactured by revered equipment supplier A. G. Spalding Bros., the ensemble is actually of the same style donned in 1903, and thus may have been used in Notre Dame's first undefeated season, when Louis "Red" Salmon was the earliest of the Fightin' Irish ever named a Walter Camp All-American. Includes helmet, nose guard, vest, sweater and pants. Estimated value $5,000 - $10,000.
"Legends of the Diamond" Highlights
Over 80 lots of premium baseball items that cover every major collecting area are being offered in Mastro Auctions' "Legends of the Diamond" session. They include:
Legendary Historical Items
Historic Mickey Mantle World Series Home Run Ball #16 - The Ball That Broke Babe Ruth's Record
Mickey Mantle's 18 World Series circuit blasts will forever remain among the most inviolable records of the game. He claimed that unique station in the 1964 Fall Classic when the Yankees faced off against St. Louis. Previously, Babe Ruth who had registered 15 home runs in October play held the crown. The home run that topped Ruth was performed with this OAL (Cronin) baseball. Through the frenzy of the moment, the ball was miraculously recovered and yielded to the hero, Mickey Mantle. For his own showcase, he inscribed the ball with the particulars. The handwritten details are bold and distinct. Penned in black felt tip by Mantle, the grand moment cites "World Series...9th inning" on the sweet spot, and in turn, he scribed the west panel to remember "My 16th H. R....10/10/64...Yanks-Cards...2-1." Estimated value $80,000 - $100,000.
Mickey Mantle's Signed and Inscribed 535th Home Run Ball
On September 19, 1968, the Yankees took another defeat on the chin. But in the top of the eighth, the elderly and beleaguered Mickey Mantle stepped to the box against the invincible fireballer Denny McLain. Swinging from the port side, Mantle connected with one of those deliveries and belted a home run into the right field bleachers-the 535th of his career-moving him past Jimmie Foxx and into third position on the all-time list behind Ruth and Mays. The principal artifact from that performance is this OAL (Cronin) ball. The ball was retrieved and Mantle affirmed its meaning as he penned "My 535th H. R. [signed] Mickey Mantle" on the west panel. The writing's overall quality is about "6". Estimated value $50,000 - $75,000.
The Ultimate Trophy Ball - The "Final Out" of the First-Ever National League Championship Game in 1876 - Chicago Triumphs over Hartford!
This is the Senior Circuit's very first championship relic! Dominant in the circuit's inaugural campaign, the "White Stockings" (forerunners to the "Cubs," to be sure) authored a 52-14 mark in securing the N.L.'s first-ever title. In play during the White Stockings' 7-6 triumph over the Hartford Dark Blues on September 26, 1876 at 23rd Street Grounds, this historically significant sphere was subsequently decorated-very likely on-the-spot, at the raucous victory scene-with gold-colored paint and a handwritten legend. The vintage coat of gold-colored paint is chipped throughout-but still completely obscures any laces. In black paint, "BALL Winning the Championship FOR 1876 - Chicago vs. Hartford - 7-6 - Sept. 26th" is recorded. Estimated value $40,000 - $50,000.
Legendary Baseball Cards
1956 Topps #79 Sandy Koufax - PSA GEM MT 10
This is the only grey-backed '56 Topps Koufax graded at this level. It is amazingly free of any of the print defects that are so common in the issue. The fantastic graphics delight the eye, and a study in opposites is presented by the intensity of the field action balanced by the youthful exuberance in the close-up portrayal. The corners are pristine and the card's coloration and projection qualities are simply magnificent. On the reverse, a pure field of grey cardstock acts as a superb canvas. Estimated value $40,000 - $50,000.
Legendary Baseball Bats
Babe Ruth 1915 Spalding "Rookie Era" Game Used Bat - Earliest Known Babe Ruth Game Used Bat! - PSA 9
An utterly gorgeous piece, the relic's high-grade ash design flaunts a standard wood finish with "BABE RUTH" block-lettered and still deeply engraved at the barrel. Turned for the Red Sox ace circa 1915, the 35-1/4", 37-1/2-oz. bat exhibits the most incredible wood grain, which serves as the inviting setting for the manufacturer's pronounced "SPALDING" centerbrand. Spalding's logo is also stamped at the knob, a trademark custom that was typical for the manufacturer's period pro model lumber. Obviously a favorite of Ruth's, the item shows evidence of heavy overall use in the form of ball and cleat marks about the barrel. Estimated value $50,000 - $75,000.
Mickey Mantle 1951 Hillerich & Bradsby Game Used Bat - Only Ordered In His Rookie Season - PSA 9
Conclusively, 1951 proved to be a watershed season in the annals of the Yankee mystique. It was during the course of that tumultuous 1951 season that Mickey ordered this bat: an "L16" Hillerich & Bradsby signature model weapon. 1951 is the only year Mantle would order this model lumber. The "L16" engraving found at the knob attests to the bat's use during Mickey's rookie year. The item was turned to the specifications of bats ordered by Mantle on April 20, 1951. This potent 35", 35 oz. monster is composed of top grade white ash with all of the stampings deep and pronounced. Uncracked, the item exhibits signs of excellent use. Estimated value $50,000 - $75,000.
Jackie Robinson 1950s Game Used Bat - PSA 7
This Hillerich & Bradsby "R17" signature model bat was employed by the courageous and selfless Hall of Famer during his history-making career in Flatbush. While baseball's color barrier prevented Robinson from debuting until the age of 28, he did so in the manner of a seasoned veteran. The winner of baseball's first-ever Rookie of the Year Award, Robinson immediately experienced October drama and excitement. Turned during the 1950-1956 labeling period, this high-grade ash gamer hails from Robinson's deadly arsenal. The 35", 35-oz. weapon shows characteristics that are ideal, perfectly matching those on Robinson models from his historic playing career. The centerbrand and barrel stampings are near-perfect. Uncracked, the item exhibits evidence of moderate to heavy use. Estimated value $50,000 - $75,000.
1969 Hank Aaron Inscribed 534 Hr Game Used Adirondack Bat - PSA 10
This is the Adirondack lumber with which Aaron launched career home run number 534 in 1969. It was a round-tripper that placed the Braves great just three short of longball-affluent contemporary Mickey Mantle, and the very one that tied "Hammerin' Hank" with Hall of Famer Jimmie Foxx for fourth on the all-time list. The Cooperstown legend himself memorialized his important achievement in tying Jimmie Foxx when he penned "Hank Aaron - HR 534 - 7/15/1969" on this very heirloom. Hank Aaron's potent inscription displays nicely against the "63A" model lumber's flame-treated finish, and every bit of the black Sharpie penning exhibits "10" strength. Turned for Aaron's use during the 1969 labeling period, this 35-1/2", 35-oz., high-grade ash weapon is uncracked, and, as expected, shows evidence of tremendous game use. Estimated value $10,000 - $15,000.
Roy Campanella 1950s H&B Game Used Bat - PSA 8
This Hillerich & Bradsby "W64" block-letter (last name only) bat was used by the Brooklyn Dodger great during the final season of his remarkable career. Boasting a rich brown finish and legible stampings, this 35", 35-oz. high-grade ash weapon was wielded by "Campy" during the 1957 season, as H&B factory records confirm order dates (for this model number) of March 6 and April 16 of that year. The uncracked Flatbush relic shows light to moderate use. Estimated value $10,000 - $15,000.
Legendary Baseball Jerseys
Mickey Mantle 1958 New York Yankees Game Worn Road World Series Jersey
Mickey Mantle wore this New York Yankees road jersey during Game 2 of the 1958 World Series. The jersey was originally sourced from a trainer for the mid-1960s Ft. Lauderdale Yankees Class A affiliate, who obtained the garment from the club's General Manager, Ed Bastian. This gray flannel button-down garment declares "NEW YORK" in blue felt characters arched across the chest-completely original in their block-style arrangement. Within the collar, a felt strip tag, embroidered in blue cursive, reads: "Mantle - 1958." Considering its extensive use, this item has held up remarkably well, showing evidence of moderate to heavy wear. Estimated value $80,000 - $100,000.
Lefty Grove 1941 Boston Red Sox Game Worn Complete Road Uniform - From His Final Season
Fewer than a handful of Lefty Grove gamers are known to exist, and this complete road uniform may well be the most significant. The elite ensemble of jersey, pants and stirrups hails from Grove's swan-song campaign, 1941, when he reached the milestone of his 300th-and final-victory. The 41-year-old southpaw logged his last road game in Philadelphia on September 28, 1941, and it is certainly possible that he completed his illustrious career that day in this very uniform. Beginning with the gray flannel jersey, "Bob Grove" is beautifully chain-stitched in red inside the collar. Navy-blue felt lettering spells out "B-O-S-T-O-N" across the chest, matching the navy-blue felt "10" on the reverse. In the gray flannel pants, "R Grove" is chain-stitched in red inside the waistline. Finally, Grove's knee-high stirrups are composed of thick wool and feature navy-and-red striping. Estimated value $50,000 - $75,000.
Retired Numbers of Yankees Greats that Hung in Yankee Stadium - Ruth, Gehrig
On April 15, 1976, Yankee Stadium reopened after two years of renovations. What was most noticeable was that the three monuments in center field were no longer there. The monuments erected to honor Miller Huggins (1932), Lou Gehrig (1941), and Babe Ruth (1949) had been moved behind the new outfield wall, as were the Ed Barrow, Joe DiMaggio, Mickey Mantle, and Jacob Ruppert plaques. The framed swatches of actual Yankee pinstripes (with the blue felt retired numbers stitched on) and the name plaques that identified which number belong to which legend that were displayed inside the Stadium before its 1974-75 renovation were also gone. But unlike the monuments, the numbers and plaques were not placed back in the newly renovated stadium.
A 1997 letter from John Golden of Golden Glen Entertainment explains that he procured the retired numbers of Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig and Joe DiMaggio (numbers 3, 4 and 5) from the owner of a sports collectable store in Nyack, NY in 1976. The owner of the store acquired the retired numbers and corresponding plaques through the contractor in charge of the Yankee Stadium renovation who had secured the right to sell certain Yankee artifacts and memorabilia. The retired numbers were part of that transaction. In 1990, according to Golden, Nick Priore, who was the Yankees clubhouse manager and, at the time had been with the organization for 31 years, authenticated that they were, in fact, the retired numbers that hung in the stadium prior to the commencement of the refurbishing of Yankee Stadium. The retired Yankees numbers include:
Lou Gehrig's Retired "Number 4" That Hung in Yankee Stadium - The First Number Retired in Professional Baseball
It is widely recorded that Lou Gehrig's No. 4 was retired on July 4, 1939, but that is not the case. That was "Lou Gehrig Appreciation Day" at the Stadium, when 61,808 fans paid tribute to Gehrig when he told them "I consider myself the luckiest man on the face of the earth." It wasn't until January 6, 1940 that Yankees President Edward G. Barrow announced that Gehrig's No. 4 would never again be worn by another Yankee, the first time in baseball history that a major league club had so honored a player. Lou Gehrig's blue felt No. "4" is sewn on authentic Yankee pinstripes. Stitched in blue script below the number are the words "Lou Gehrig Number retired July 4, 1939." The piece is accompanied by the original bronze "LOU GEHRIG" plaque which hung beneath his retired number. Estimated value $30,000 - $40,000.
Babe Ruth's Retired "Number 3" That Hung in Yankee Stadium
One would think that Babe Ruth's No. 3 would have been retired when he left the Yankees or at least after he had retired from baseball, but that was not the case. The Babe and the Yankees did not part company amicably after the 1934 season. As a result he did not receive the dubious honor until 1948. Babe Ruth's blue felt No. "3" is sewn on authentic Yankee pinstripes. Stitched in blue script beneath the number are the words "Babe Ruth Number retired June 13, 1948." The piece is accompanied by the original bronze "BABE RUTH" plaque, which hung beneath his retired number. Estimated value $30,000 - $40,000.
Howard Ehmke 1929 Philadelphia Athletics Complete Road Uniform - Worn for His Record 13 Strike Out World Series Performance
Despite some late season success, it would seem that Ehmke's role with the A's in the postseason was to be that of a scout, his observations to benefit aces Grove, Earnshaw, and Walberg. Then, in a shocking move, the Athletics skipper, Connie Mack, chose Howard Ehmke, a fourteen-year veteran and widely considered the seventh best pitcher on Philly's roster, to start Game 1 of the World Series! What followed from Mack's intriguing decision was a record-setting performance, and one that stood until 1953. Ehmke pitched the A's to a 3-1 victory, striking out a record 13 batters! This is the complete uniform worn by Philadelphia Athletics moundsman Howard Ehmke during the 1929 regular season, and employed again while striking-out thirteen Chicago Cubs batters in that year's Fall Classic. The 10 articles of Athletics regalia worn by Ehmke include the jersey, pants, baseball cap, belt, stockings (2); stirrups (2) and Shoes (2). Estimated value $20,000 - $30,000.
Live Legends Sale
Honus Wagner 1935 Pittsburgh Pirates Road Coaches Jersey
By then his playing days more than a decade past, Honus Wagner agreed to rejoin the Pittsburgh Pirates in 1933 in the role of a hitting instructor, Pirates brass hoping to benefit from the diamond hero's veteran savvy. A tremendous piece of baseball history is presented in this scarce Pittsburgh Pirates road jersey worn by "coach" Wagner during the 1935 season. The gray flannel button-down jersey displays "PIRATES" on the front in red-on-navy blue felt lettering. Wagner's coaching number "36" is featured on the back in navy blue-colored felt numerals. "WAGNER" is stitched beside the Spalding logo in orange thread. The year "35" is stitched to the back right tail in orange thread. Overall, this significant treasure carries use consistent with a full season of wear. Estimated value $15,000 - $20,000.
Legendary Baseball Autographs
Babe Ruth 1927 Signed 60 Home Run Photo Display
Babe Ruth's signature season was 1927. The summation of that slugging performance is emphatically demonstrated in this unique display. Matted and framed, this colossal piece measures 30" x 40". The action photograph is flawless. With the personalized salutation, "To My Pal James J. Donahue From 'Babe' Ruth...Oct. 10th 1927," it is obvious that this was no idle gratituity. Consuming the greater part of the display's surface is the orderly sequence of drawn baseballs which enumerate Ruth's 1927 home runs and identify each of the opposing pitchers who yielded them. The illustrated balls are to exact scale. Then, uniformly penned in each are the home run number, the pitcher's last name, his team, and the pertinent date. Estimated value $40,000 - $50,000.
Mickey Mantle Signed 1952 Contract
As the 1952 regular season approached, Mickey Mantle was without a finalized contract in his anticipated service to the Yankees, and issues loomed. In the 1951 campaign, Mantle's ultimate station on the field remained a vexing question. And then there was the matter of all those strikeouts. Nonetheless, against that troublesome backdrop, a pact was drafted between the parties-Mickey Mantle and the New York Yankees. On the front page of the "Uniform Player's Contract" it is stated that Mickey would be compensated $7,500 for the 1952 season. On page 3 under "Special Covenants," it also reads, "If said player Mantle is retained on the active list of the Yankee Club after June 15, 1952 he will be paid at the rate of $10,000.00 retroactive to the start of the season." Mantle's inked fountain pen projects at a quality of "9-10". Estimated value $20,000 - $30,000.
Cy Young Single Signed Ball
While Young's signature is coveted because of the scant population alone, the penning on this clean and creamy sphere is all the more alluring in that its bold characteristics warrant an assessment of at least "9" in terms of strength and clarity. Executed on a side panel of the unofficial "MacGregor Goldsmith" sphere, the Hall of Famer's blue ink signature is one of his last, as evidenced by the inscription (in Young's own hand) of "1953 - 86 yrs." Young passed away two years later. Estimated value $10,000 - $15,000.
Legendary Baseball Awards
Steve Carlton 1977 Cy Young Award
The first pitcher ever to win four Cy Young Awards ('72, '77, '80 and '82), Steve Carlton notched 329 victories over a 24-season Hall of Fame career spent primarily with the Philadelphia Phillies. The iconic award consists of a visually striking, silver-plated design mounted on a black-lacquered wooden. The centerpiece of the award is a life-like sculpted pitcher's hand sprouting from the mound of a baseball diamond and clutching a ball with a two-fingered grip. Relief lettering above and below reads, respectively, "CY YOUNG AWARD" and "PRESENTED TO STEVE CARLTON - MOST VALUABLE PITCHER NATIONAL LEAGUE 1977." Estimated value $40,000 - $50,000.
Tim Raines 1996 New York Yankees Oversized Championship Trophy
This Yankees championship Commissioner's trophy was issued to Tim Raines following the team's 1996 Fall Classic triumph. The oversized prize is arranged on a wooden base, whose surrounding gold-colored band reads "REPLICA 1996 WORLD SERIES CHAMPIONSHIP TROPHY - New York Yankees vs Atlanta Braves - Tim Raines." Atop the black base, a gold-colored band has a gold-colored baseball at its base and a crown figure at the top. Proudly standing at the front of the display are press pin replicas representing the respective combatants. Surrounding the base are 28 gold-colored flags that, in alphabetical order, bear the names of each Major League team. Accompanying the heirloom is a typed letter signed by Virginia Raines detailing the trophy's provenance. Estimated value $20,000 - $30,000.
Jose Cardenal 1999 New York Yankees World Series Coach's Ring
Matching the Toronto Blue Jays' feat of 1992-1993, the '99 New York Yankees repeated as World Champions. The ring's opulent design pays tribute to the feat of 25 major league championships. This heirloom was issued to Yankees first base coach Jose Cardenal following the team's 1999 league title. Three diamond-encrusted tiers form the top of this visually stunning memento. The first tier of twenty-five authentic stones shapes the club's "NY" emblem, which sits atop a sea of forty-five more diamonds. Then, bordering this magnificent presentation are twenty-six additional gems, along with raised lettering denoting the year "1999." Each of the ring's shanks celebrates the franchise's 25th World Championship-one side of the band displays an engraving of the championship trophy and "25th," which design is flanked by "CARDENAL" and "TRADITION"; the opposite side boasts the team logo and Yankee Stadium facade, which are accompanied by a pair of banner motifs that individually carry "THE CENTURY'S TEAM" and "25th WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP." Accompanying the gorgeous exemplar is its, custom-made, wooden display box (7-1/2" x 6" x 2-1/2"). Estimated value $20,000 - $30,000.
1996 New York Yankees World Series Scout's Ring
This genuine, 10K gold, diamond-studded championship ring was bestowed on a member of the Yankees' scouting department. Twenty-three diamonds form the club's "NY" insignia at the top of the piece, and bordering the diamond design is raised lettering that exhibits, "WORLD CHAMPIONS 1996." On one shank, the ring displays the team logo flanked by the depiction of the Yankee Stadium facade and engraved lettering that reads, "TRADITION." The opposing shank showcases "JORGE," a detailed depiction of the World Series trophy, and the engraved "COURAGE" and "HEART." Estimated value $15,000 - $20,000.
1998 New York Yankees World Series Scout's Ring
To mark the Yankees' banner season of 1998, players, front office members, and scouts received a coveted annual rite of passage: the championship ring. This Yankees World Series ring was awarded to a member of the Yankees scouting department. The shimmering, 10-karat-gold example features the Yankees "NY" insignia formed by 24 diamonds against an iridescent blue stone. The perimeter of this brilliant presentation is surrounded by 24 more authentic stones, which are then bordered by the words "WORLD CHAMPIONS 1998." On one side, the ring showcases "125-50" and "Best Ever" flanking the Yankees top-hat logo design. The opposing shank exhibits the name "ZAVALA" seated above a relief of Yankee Stadium and the championship trophy. Estimated value $15,000 - $20,000.
1908 Christy Mathewson Trophy Awarded by the New York Giants for His Finest Season!
The 1908 New York Giants were almost able to capitalize on their ace hurler's banner year-easily one of the finest pitching performances in baseball's annals. The effort brought Mathewson's New York Giants within one game of the N.L. pennant, but it was the Cubs who reigned supreme that year. Nevertheless, Mathewson's monumental performance proved worthy of league-wide recognition, no organization more appreciative than his own New York Giants. This sterling silver trophy was awarded to Mathewson by the Giants ballclub following the pitcher's historic 1908 campaign. The heirloom boasts a trophy cup design with handsomely engraved lettering on the front of the piece proclaiming, "PRESENTED TO - Christy Mathewson - AS A TOKEN OF RESPECT - 1908 - NEW YORK B.B. CLUB." This incredible bestowment was the equivalent of the team's own "Most Valuable Player" recognition. Estimated value $15,000 - $20,000.
FOR MORE INFORMATION
The two-part live "Legends" sports auction will represent Mastro Auctions' second major live-format sports auction of 2008. The company conducted a wildly successful Live Sports sale in August, which resulted in the highest price ever paid for a single baseball card at public auction: a 1909-11 T206 Honus Wagner card sold for $1.62 million.
Prior to the auction, all items in the sale will be on public display at the The Sports Museum of America on Sunday, December 7, and a cocktail reception will be held that evening at 7 p.m. Reservations for the cocktail reception are required. For more information, to register for the cocktail party, or to bid in the auction and receive an auction catalog, call Mastro Auctions at 630-472-1200 or go to www.mastroauctions.com.
About Mastro Auctions
Mastro Auctions, of Burr Ridge, Illinois, is part of the Silkroad Equity family of companies. The firm is the nation's leading high-value collectibles auction company. The company has been involved in the sale of many of the most famous and valuable Sports and Americana collectibles ever publicly offered, including the most expensive baseball card ever sold at public auction (a 1909-11 T206 Honus Wagner for $1.62 million), the most expensive baseball card set (1914 Cracker Jack, $960,000), and the bat Babe Ruth used to hit his first home run in Yankee Stadium ($1.2 million). Mastro Auctions also sold Norman Rockwell's "The Dugout" original oil painting ($355,000), Roger Maris' 1961 jersey (worn when he hit home run #61, $302,000), the bus Rosa Parks was riding when she refused to stand for segregation (nearly $500,000) and the famous Steve Bartman Cubs foul ball (more than $100,000). For more information, call Mastro Auctions at 630-472-1200 or go to www.mastroauctions.com.