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Lot # 1318 (of 1594)   < Previous Lot | Next Lot >

1956 Mickey Mantle Pro Model Bat - Triple Crown Season!

Starting Bid - $5,000.00, Sold For - $32,312.50

This extraordinary Mickey Mantle pro-model bat is, to the best of our knowledge, the only Mantle pro-model bat that can be dated precisely to his 1956 Triple Crown season. Ideally, the offered bat, a white-letter Adirondack, is also one of the most aesthetically pleasing Mantle pro-model bats ever produced. The model "113A" bat features the name "Mantle" stamped on the barrel in block letters. Evidence of heavy use is displayed along its entire length in the form of ball marks and deeply embedded stitch marks on both the left- and right-hand hitting surfaces (an important and desirable feature for switch hitters), cleat marks, grain swelling, and a repaired six-inch "H" crack in the handle. The precise dating of this bat is based upon both its physical characteristics and special provenance. The center brand dates to the 1951 to 1957 manufacturing period, but the bat can be more narrowly dated to the 1956 or 1957 season due to the fact that Adirondack only began producing white-letter bats in 1956. The bat can be further pinpointed to the 1956 season based upon its provenance. This bat originates from a bat collection amassed by a former Washington Senators batboy that is also the source of many other 1950s bats now in found in the hobby. Luckily for collectors today, all of the bats from that collection can be positively dated to 1956, for that was the only year he worked as a Major League batboy. This bat was originally purchased directly from the former bat boy by highly respected and longtime hobbyist Steve Terman and is accompanied by a letter from Terman recounting its history. Also included with the bat are two handwritten letters from noted bat authenticator Vince Malta (the bat once resided in his personal collection as well) in which he further attests to the bat's authenticity and special 1956 provenance. 1956 represented Mickey Mantle's finest overall season. The legendary slugger captured baseball's coveted Triple Crown that year by posting league-high marks in batting average (.353), home runs (52), and RBI (130). Those lofty numbers also earned him the MVP Award at season's end. Whiteletter Adirondack bats have long been prized by collectors for their exceptional visual appeal, and the offered bat is no exception. The dark, flame-burned model displays impeccable stampings, including both Mantle's name on the barrel and the center brand. While collectors have long placed a premium on all Mantle pro-model bats, few can compare to the offered bat in terms of desirability and significance. Very few Mantle pro model bats can be precisely attributed to a specific year, let alone one as important as his Triple Crown season. Currently, this is the only Mantle pro-model bat in the MEARS census definitively attributed to 1956 and one of only twelve dating from the 1950s (compared to over thirty Mantle pro-model bats dating to the 1960s and 1970s). The bat's year-specific provenance, level of use, condition and aesthetic appeal, all combine to make this one of the finest Mantle bats in existence. Length: 35 inches. Weight: 32.5 ounces. Graded A8.5 by MEARS (5 point base grade, plus 3 points for use and 1 point for player specific traits, with a half point deducted for the crack in the handle). LOA from Dave Bushing & Troy Kinunen/MEARS. Reserve $5,000. Estimate $10,000/$15,000.
SOLD FOR $32,312.50

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