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1912-1925 Miller Huggins Pro-Model Bat
Starting Bid - $500.00, Sold For - $6,517.50
Rare Miller Huggins Spalding "Autograph" model bat (predating model numbers) dating from the 1912-1925 manufacturing period. Graded GU 6.5 by PSA/DNA. The barrel stamping features the words "Spalding" and "Autograph" in block letters, between which is Huggins' facsimile signature. Heavy use is displayed along its entire length, including many ball marks on the front, right, and left barrel, and checking (grain swelling from repeated ball contact) on the front and back barrel. The bat also displays a crack in the handle and knob, as well as chipping to the front of the barrel, that have all been professionally repaired. Huggins, nicknamed "The Mighty Mite" due to his diminutive stature (he was five feet six inches tall and weighed 140 pounds), was noted both for his fine defensive play and his baseball acumen. Possessing good speed and a knack for getting on base, he was also considered the ideal leadoff man; however, it was his managerial skill that eventually got him elected to the Hall of Fame. As the main architect of the Yankees fabled 1920s baseball dynasty Huggins won six pennants and three World Championships in his twelve seasons in pinstripes (1918-1929). Unfortunately, Huggins passed away prematurely in 1929 at the age of fifty. He was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1964. Since the manufacturing period of this bat spans both Huggins' active playing career (1904-1916) and managerial career (1913-1929), it is impossible to more narrowly date its possible season or seasons of use. (Huggins was player/manager of the St. Louis Cardinals from 1913-1916.) We have only seen a few other Huggins pro-model bats at public auction over the years and his are certainly among the rarest of those of all Hall of Fame players. Interestingly, as noted in the accompanying PSA/DNA LOA, "The knob of the bat is absent the familiar Spalding trademark, which appears on retail and pro model bats from the referenced labeling period. Generally, if there is an indication of hand turning, we can conclude that the bat is a pro model. Retail knobs, in most cases, will have the Spalding trademark and an even finish. When examining the knob of this bat, there are defined file marks visible across the grain indicating a rough finishing after its removal from the lathe." Length: 31.375 inches. Weight: 35.9 ounces. LOA from John Taube and Vince Malta of PSA/DNA. Reserve $500. Estimate $1,500+. SOLD FOR $6,517.50
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