The value and desirability of a team-signed ball is normally predicated on the success of team and the number of significant signatures present on the ball. This ball, however, is the exact opposite to that rule and is valued by collectors for the sheer ineptitude of the club. Offered here is a ball signed by the 1962 New York Mets, the worst team in baseball history. The Spalding "Mets" souvenir ball has been signed in blue or black ink by the following 27 members of the club: Hornsby (coach), Ashburn, Ruffing (coach), Hodges, Hickman, Hook, Cannizzaro, Christopher, Anderson, Kanehl, Moorhead, Bend Mizell, Daviault, Thomas, Lavagetto (coach), Throneberry, Landrith, Cook, Miller, Kress (coach), Neal, Hemus (coach), Craig, Mantilla, Jackson, and two others (illegible). The Stengel signature on the sweet spot has been deemed a clubhouse example by JSA and Beckett Authentication. Signatures range from "1" to "7," averaging "4/5." The ball displays light-to-moderate toning and is in Very Good to Excellent condition overall. Accompanied by a Casey Stengel black-and-white magazine photo (4 x 7 inches; Vg) signed by Stengel in blue ink ("9/10"). Auction LOA from James Spence/JSA. Pre certified by Steve Grad and Brian Sobrero/Beckett Authentication. Reserve $200. Estimate (open).
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