1961 New York Yankees World Champions Team-Signed Ball with Player Provenance

Sold For: $588

Auction Year: 2010 spring

Lot: 1090

Item Year: 1961

Category: Autographed Baseballs/Flats/Photos

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This baseball, along with the other 1961 New York Yankees team-signed ball offered in this auction, originates from Yankees pitcher Jim Coates and was obtained by our consignor directly from Coates during a trip to Yankee Stadium in 1961. In his accompanying one-page typed letter, our consignor relates how he obtained the balls: "To Whom It May Concern: In the summer of 1961 I went to New York with Jim Coates' sister to see the Yankees and to meet Jim Coates, who pitched for the Yankees. Jim took me into the dugout to meet Mickey Mantle, Roger Maris, and various players. At that time, Jim Coates gave me two autographed 1961 New York Yankees baseballs. The offered ball is one of the two I received that day." Interestingly, our consignor, a former minor-league pitcher in the Detroit Tigers organization, is also the gentleman who consigned the 1954 Al Kaline Detroit Tigers rookie jersey featured in this auction. The official American League (Cronin) ball has been signed in either blue or black ink by the following twenty-three members of the 1961 World Champion New York Yankees: Berra (sweet spot), Ford, Maris, Skowron, Richardson, Kubek, Boyer, Howard, Lopez, Blanchard, DeMaestri, Reed, Gonder, Cerv, Johnson, Arroyo, Stafford, Coates (on ball label), Sheldon, Turley, Ditmar, Clevenger, and Sain (coach). The Mantle signature on the sweet spot is a clubhouse signature. The signatures range from "5" to "7," averaging "6." The number "39," which was the uniform number worn by Yankees pitcher Jim Coates in 1961, is written in vintage black ink on a side panel. (It was common practice at the time for clubhouse personnel to write the uniform number of the player for whom the ball was being signed on one of the side panels in order to keep track of each player's allotment.) The manufacturer's stampings are light; but legible, otherwise the ball is in Near Mint condition. LOA from James Spence/JSA. Reserve $300. Estimate (open). SOLD FOR $588

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