WESTHAMPTON BEACH, N.Y. – Jackie Robinson’s No. 42, now retired from all of baseball, is available as the premier lot in Grey Flannel Auction’s Dec. 5 sale. The opening $50,000 bid is expected to jump quickly into six-figures.
Richard Russek, president and CEO of Grey Flannel, said Jackie Robinson jerseys available to the market are very rare. There is less than a handful known. Robinson, a baseball hall of famer and one of the most beloved Dodgers ever, was memorialized by Major League Baseball by having his No. 42 retired by all big league teams for his role as the player who broke the color barrier.
â€œThis Dodger jersey, worn by one of the greatest athletes of all time, much less a stellar ball player, bears the script Dodgers brand, which with the New York Yankees is the greatest brand in sports,â€ Russek said. â€œFigure in the Dodger blue 42 worn by one of the most overall exciting players to wear a uniform and collectors have one of the most cherished pieces that could come to the auction block.â€
Russek added that a significant percentage of the 900 lots, in keeping with a Grey Flannel tradition, are game-used jerseys. Among the most coveted pieces will be a Joe Morgan Houston flannel, an Early Wynn White Sox flannel jersey and one of Stan Musial’s jerseys from 1962, when Musial’s career was winding down.
â€œThis jersey bears the Musial name across the back, something we take for granted today,â€ Russek explained. â€œBut only in Stan-the-Man’s last two years did teams add names, so this jersey represents not only one of baseball’s great players and great jersey designs with the St. Louis Cardinals, but it marks a transitional time in sports fashion.â€
Pitcher Bob Friend’s 1960 Pittsburgh Pirates championship trophy also will be in the December sale. Of course, the ’60 Series is remembered most for ending on Bill Mazeroski’s home run over the left field wall, thus making it one of the most-remembered World Series ever. This trophy comes directly from Friend.
The sale is graced by numerous game-used jerseys by Who’s Who from all
sports. A Bobby Orr Boston Bruins road sweater from the early 1970s is particularly desirable. Other stars whose jerseys are represented in the sale are Gale Sayers, Joe Namath, Mark Messier and Hank Aaron.
A couple of items noting what many consider the greatest baseball team ever
will be in the December sale. Two team-signed baseballs by the 1927 Yankees are will be sold in separate lots.Â
The most infamous jersey in the sale is a piece of Americana, a bulletproof vest found in the home of notorious gangster Al Capone. The vest first came to market in 1992 during an auction of the Capone estate. It surfaces once again.
ALMOST AS NOTORIOUS
Could it be his last? Michael Vick’s Atlanta Falcons jersey from Dec. 31,
2006, is offered. It is signed and comes with a letter of authenticity from Vick himself.
Book your trip to see the Hall of Fame induction of your favorite basketball heroes. Grey Flannel is a major host for a dinner and auction event for the next five years. Two lots give bidders chances to win the VIP Experience for the 2008 and 2009 events. In 2009 Michael Jordan is eligible for the first time.
While the Yankees pursue their 27th world championship, one collector can be the winning bidder of the 2000 Yankees â€œTeam of the Centuryâ€ Hall of Fame ring. The December sale also features a championship ring awarded to the 1984 Detroit Tigers. Jose Cardenal’s ring from the champion Yanks of 1996 is also on the block.
Jerseys spanning Michael Jordan’s professional career are part of the Grey
Flannel sale. A game-used home jersey from 1986 is part of the sale as is a game-used alternate Bulls uniform from 1995-’96. Game-used and signed
sneakers from the ’95-’96 Bulls rounds out the premier Jordan items in the sale.
OFF THE ROAD
Dale Earnhardt, Sr.’s racing suit from his winning run in the Winston Select 500 on May 1, 1994, is open for bidding. The racing suit is twice signed and a sure centerpiece for the NASCAR collector. From a different stage, Lance Armstrong’s podium-worn jersey from the Stage 4 of the 2005 Tour de France is for sale. The jersey is authenticated with a photo match.
Among other items in the sale:
o A Willie Mays road flannel San Francisco Giants uniform from 1969
o Reggie Jackson’s Yankees road uniform from 1980, with an arm band memorializing Elston Howard. The jersey is signed;
o A 2005 Derek Jeter game-used and signed road jersey
o A 1994 Alex Rodriguez rookie Seattle Mariners game-used and signed teal alternate jersey;
o The bat Barry bonds used to hit career home run No. 550; the bat is signed and bears the Bonds hologram;
o A Duke Snider game bat signed by the 1955 National League All-Star team;
o A Ted Williams game bat, circa 1953;
o The Mayors Game Trophy commemorating the series from 1946 to 1948 between the New York Yankees and the New York Giants;
o Rogers Hornsby’s All America Baseball Team Award from Sept. 10, 1926, signed by the chairman, â€œGeorge Hâ€ Babe Ruth;
o A single-signed Babe Ruth ball;
o A 1934 Tour of Japan-autographed ball with both Ruth and Lou Gehrig;
o A team ball signed by the 1936 World Champion Yankees, including a rookie named Joe DiMaggio;
o A Wilt Chamberlain game-used home Los Angeles Lakers jersey from 1972-’73; and
o A game-used road Celtics jersey worn by John Havlicek from 1974-’75.
For the latest bids on these spectacular lots, please consult www.greyflannelauctions.com.
Grey Flannel serves as the official appraiser for the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame and Museum in Springfield, Mass. It also worked with Sotheby’s in authenticating the largest private collection of jerseys, the Barry Halper collection, part of which landed in the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum in Cooperstown, N.Y.