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1983 Official Line-Up Card from the George Brett "Pine Tar" Game!
Starting Bid - $500, Sold For - $4,994
In 1999 George Brett was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame with a resume that would be the envy of any Major League player: 3,154 hits, a .305 career average, three batting titles (won in three different decades, a baseball first), an MVP Award, and thirteen All-Star Game appearances. Despite those achievements, he is best remembered today for one unforgettable moment that will forever be known as "The Pine Tar Incident." On July 24, 1983, in a game against the New York Yankees at Yankee Stadium, George Brett hit a dramatic two-out, two-run homer in the top of the ninth off reliever Goose Gossage to give the Royals a 5-4 lead. Immediately afterwards, Yankees manager Billy Martin complained to home plate umpire Tim McClelland that the pine tar on Brett's bat exceeded the maximum length by rule (seventeen inches from the handle) and that the home run should be disallowed and Brett called out. McClelland agreed and when he called Brett out it set off one of the wildest "rhubarbs" in baseball history. Brett charged from the dugout like a crazed lunatic and might have killed McClelland had the other umpires not physically restrained him. Today, that scene of Brett bolting out of the dugout is one of the most indelible images in baseball history. The Royals later protested the game and it was upheld by American League president Lee MacPhail. In the resumption of the game, twenty-five days later, the Yankees failed to score in the bottom of the ninth, thereby giving Brett, if not the most memorable game-winning home run in history, certainly the most controversial. Offered here is the very lineup card that hung in the New York Yankees dugout on that fateful day. The card (8.5 x 14 inches) bears the date "7/24/83" in the upper right, and lists the handwritten lineups, including reserves for each team. A number of lineup changes are duly noted, including the substitution of starting first baseman Steve Balboni with a promising young player by the name of Don Mattingly. The lineup card displays three tack holes along the top and one on the bottom, as well as three horizontal folds and a few creases. In Very Good condition. Together with a ticket stub (1.5 x 2.5 inches; Ex) from the game. Reserve $500. Estimate (open). SOLD FOR $4,994
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