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Circa 1908 K. C. Bentons' Team Photo with Casey Stengel - Earliest Known Stengel Photo!
Starting Bid - $200.00 , Sold For - $1,175.00
Presented here is what we believe to be the earliest known baseball photo featuring “The Old Professor,” Casey Stengel. Dating from circa 1908, this large-format team-cabinet photo pictures eleven members of the Kansas City Bentons, a semi-pro club, including Charles Dillon Stengel, who is pictured standing to the far left in the back row. (Interestingly, the players are identified in print on the reverse, but Stengel is misidentified; the sheet lists him in the middle row, though he is clearly standing in the upper left.) Stengel, who was about sixteen-years-old at the time of the photo, was born and raised in Kansas City, and this Kansas City team photo is of all the greater significance as his nickname of “Casey” was based upon his hometown (“K. C.” eventually evolved into “Casey”). Not surprisingly, our consignor discovered this cabinet photo in a Kansas City antique shop. Stengel began his pro career in 1910 at the age of twenty and less than three years later made his Major League debut with the Brooklyn Dodgers. Although he enjoyed a fine fourteen-year career (he led the National League in on-base percentage in 1914 and in 1921 hit the first World Series home run in Yankee Stadium), his fame today is due to his outstanding managerial career with the New York Yankees. Stengel won ten pennants and seven World Championships in twelve seasons with New York from 1949 through 1960. He was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1966. The actual mounted team photo (5 x 7 inches) is in Excellent condition overall, while the mount (8 x 10 inches) has various imperfections including general wear, a few light stains, and two repaired tears. This photo is a remarkable and fascinating find, featuring one of baseball's most colorful and well known personalities at the very beginning of his 50+ year Hall of Fame baseball career. Reserve $200. Estimate $500+. SOLD FOR $1,175.00
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