1974 Reggie Jackson Oakland Athletics Contract

Sold For: $3,600

Auction Year: 2017 spring

Lot: 1743

Item Year: 1974

Category: Baseball Contracts

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Six-page contract, dated February 19, 1974 between Reggie Jackson and the Oakland Athletics, signed in blue ink by "Reggie M. Jackson" (grading "10"), "Charles O. Finley" ("10"), owner of the team, and “Lee MacPhail Jr.” (“8”) in his capacity as American League president. The one-year agreement, for the 1974 season, calls for Jackson to receive a salary of $135,000. Contract negotiations between Finley and Jackson were always contentious affairs. The two had a huge dispute over Jackson's contract following his 1969 season, in which he hit forty-seven home runs and drove in 118 runs. Even though Jackson scored a $27,000 raise, he felt it was not enough and brooded after having signed it. An unhappy Reggie Jackson was seldom a productive one, and Jackson went on to have one of the worst seasons of his career. Finley, of course, was outraged and even tried to demote Jackson to the minors during the season but was thwarted in his attempt by commissioner Bowie Kuhn. Jackson receive a salary of $70,000 in 1973, a year in which he led the American League in both home runs (32) and RBI (117), while batting .293. Those numbers not only lead the A’s to their second consecutive World Championship, but also earned Jackson MVP honors at season’s end. Naturally, his performance in 1973 helped Jackson almost double his salary, as seen here, for the following year. Jackson had another productive season for the A’s in 1974, finishing with 29 home runs, 93 RBI, and a .289 average, with those totals once again leading the A’s to another World Championship. All told, Jackson hit 254 of his 563 home runs with the A's and was unquestionably the greatest and most controversial player on the club during its fabled 1972 to 1974 dynasty. Jackson was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1993. Baseball contracts of Hall of Fame players, especially those dating from their respective playing careers, are rare and the offered example is no exception. This is just the second Reggie Jackson contract we have ever offered and we can recall having seen just six other examples at public auction. The contract (8.5 x 11 inches) remains in Excellent to Mint condition overall. Auction LOA from James Spence/JSA. Pre certified by Steve Grad and Brian Sobrero/Beckett Authentication.
Reserve $1,000. Estimate (open).

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