New York, NY, April 24, 2008 – Today in a crowded salesroom, the only known “Shoeless” Joe Jackson Signature Model “Black Betsy” Game Bat Dating From His Major League Career sold for $301,000 to an American private collector. The bat was the highlight of Sotheby’s and SCP Auctions’ sale of Important Sports Memorabilia and Cards, which brought $2,518,130. Also among the top lots in the sale was the 1915 Cracker Jack Baseball Card Complete Set of (176) In Original Cracker Jack Album, which sold to applause for $157,000 (est. $50/75,000).
Lee Dunbar, Director of Sotheby’s Collectibles Department, said “It was great to see so many collectors come out and show their continuing love affair with America’s game while shoeless Joe Jackson is not in the Hall of Fame. He is still recognized as one of baseball’s greatest players bourne out with the interest in Black Betsy.”
David Kohler, President of SCP Auctions, continued: “Bidding was spirited on quite a few lots and we’re always pleased to see a wide range of material do well on the auction block. The 1915 Cracker Jack set was a particular favorite with our bidders and I think the results reflect that. Whether it’s cards or memorabilia, collectors continue to surprise us with their passion for these artifacts.”
Material from the legendary New York Yankees was among the most sought after in this afternoon’s sale. From the renowned collection of Dr. Richard Angrist, Mickey Mantle’s Signed 1958 World Series Bat achieved $91,000 (est. $80/$120,000) and Joe DiMaggio’s 1947 H&B Game Used Bat Used in The World Series sold for $73,000(est. $60/80,000). Lou Gehrig’s 1923-25 H&B Rookie-Era Professional Model Game Bat was also offered today and brought $73,000 (est. $60/80,000). Another highlight was Darryl Strawberry’s 1998 New Yankees World Championship Ring, which sold for $67,000 (est. $20/30,000).
Today’s sale also included items consigned by former World Heavyweight Champion Joe Frazier. Frazier’s Robe from his epic “Thrilla In Manilla” fight, voted the greatest fight ever, sold for $40,000 (est. $30/50,000) and his Robe from the Weigh-In of “The Fight Of The Century” commanded $20,000 (est. $10/15,000).
Important golf memorabilia offered included a Set Of Four Scorecards Signed By Bobby Jones from his victory in the 1926 British Open Championship at the Royal Lytham and St. Annes Club, which sold for $13,125 (est. $7/10,000). Also a Set of President Gerald R. Ford's Golf Clubs achieved $25,000 (est. $20/30,000).