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1957 St. Louis Cardinals Game-Used Home Jersey with Possible Attribution to Ken Boyer
Starting Bid - $1,000, Sold For - $3,819
This St. Louis Cardinals home jersey, dating from 1957, bears Ken Boyer's name stitched on the front, but it also displays a number of anomalies that preclude us from specifically attributing it to any one player, including Boyer. MEARS spent a great deal of time evaluating this jersey, and in addition to its standard LOA, the company has also provided a special three-page letter that fully expounds upon its findings and conclusions, which are summarized here (the letter can be viewed in its entirety on our website). The white flannel jersey features the team name "Cardinals" embroidered on the front, above which is displayed the club's distinctive logo of two cardinals perched upon a bat. The number “14" is appliquéd on the reverse in red on navy felt. Both a “Rawlings Hall of Fame Flannel” label and adjacent “44” size tag appear on the left front tail. Directly below the manufacturer’s label, chain-stitched in red, is the name “Ken Boyer," the year "57," and the letter "X" (indicating that this is an "extra" jersey). Located on the interior left front tail are a laundry tag and an adjacent flag tag reading "Set 1 1957." The name "Terreri" is written in black laundry marker in the collar. The fact that the jersey features Boyer's name stitched in the tail, along with the "X," indicates that the club originally ordered it as an extra for him. Since it was an extra jersey for Boyer, there is no way of knowing whether or not he wore it in 1957. The additional name in the collar provides compelling evidence that even if it were worn by Boyer, it was also likely worn by an additional player, possibly in spring training or the minor leagues (no record of any Major League player by that name has been found). The most enigmatic feature of this jersey is the red soutache on each sleeve. MEARS notes in its letter that this red soutache is not typical for Cardinals jerseys of this period, and was last used by the club in 1955. MEARS did find a evidence of Boyer wearing a home Cardinals jersey with red soutache on the sleeves in 1959, specifically during his appearance in the television program Home Run Derby, but that jersey also features a red soutache along the button panel as well, a feature not displayed on the offered garment. MEARS further notes that the application of the red soutache to the sleeves of this jersey is of lesser quality than that of an earlier exemplar. In conclusion, MEARS writes, This jersey posses all of the characteristics you would expect to find in a 1957 St. Louis Cardinals organizational home jersey provided by Rawlings. Because of the atypical red soutache at the sleeve and the manner it was applied, the name of an identifiable player written in the collar, and that fact that jersey can be identified as an extra, no primary attribution can be made to Ken Boyer and Ken Boyer alone. While it is possible Boyer did wear this as an extra jersey in 1957 and that the red sleeve soutache was added later for subsequent organizational use by someone named “Terreri,” it is equally possible the jersey was never worn by Boyer and simply later used by the organization. As such the offered jersey is simply categorized as a 1957 St. Louis Cardinals organizational home jersey provided by Rawlings. So there you have it: This jersey may or may not have been worn by Ken Boyer, though it was originally ordered by the Cardinals organization as an extra for potential use by Boyer. There is sufficient uncertainty to preclude us from definitively stating that this jersey was used by Boyer. On the other hand, this jersey represents an extraordinary opportunity to acquire a possible Ken Boyer jersey at a level far more reasonable and affordable than the MEARS A10 1955 Ken Boyer rookie jersey sold at REA in May 2008 for $22,325. Only two of the original seven buttons remain, with the other five having been replaced over time (the replacement buttons are not all the same). The jersey displays moderate wear, including a small, circular stain on the right front tail. Graded A4 by MEARS (10 point base grade, with 2.5 points deducted for the replaced buttons, 3 points deducted for the fact that it cannot be attributed to one specific player, and a half point deducted for the small stain on the front tail). Although no positive single player attribution can be represented, this jersey was produced for use by Ken Boyer, and this is the only 1957 St. Louis Cardinals jersey listed in the MEARS census and one of only eleven 1950s-era St. Louis Cardinals jerseys ever evaluated by the company. LOA from Troy Kinunen and Dave Grob/MEARS. Reserve $1,000. Estimate (open). SOLD FOR $3,819
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