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Circa 1954 Eddie Mathews Signed Pro Model Bat with Letter From Mathews
Starting Bid - $1,000.00, Sold For - $3,770.00
Offered is an extraordinary Eddie Mathews "Batrite" pro model bat that has the distinction of being the highest-ever graded example. The bat has been graded A9.5 by MEARS. The Hanna Manufacturing Company professional model bat dates from circa 1954 and features the model number ("No. 65B") and Mathews' name (last name only) deeply stamped on the barrel in block letters. "Pro Treated" is stamped directly below Mathews' name. Mathews has signed the bat in blue Sharpie ("9") on the sweet spot of the barrel. The bat displays significant use along its entire length including a number of deep ball marks, stitch marks, cleat marks, grain swelling and a moderate amount of pine tar on the handle. Dead wood is evident on the reverse of the barrel (including slight separation of the grain) that has been repaired with two vintage nails. The bat matches the precise specifications of those manufactured for Mathews by H&B at the time. The bat is accompanied by an LOA from Mathews himself. In the one-page letter signed by Mathews, he writes: "To Whom It May Concern: This letter is to certify that during my career with the Milwaukee Braves I used a HANNA BATRITE baseball bat during game play. The bats have my MATHEWS name on the barrel along with a serial number and the words, PRO TREATED. Mr. Schutz's bat [the offered bat] has serial number 65B and I believe it is one of my original bats." In support of Mathews' own testimony, MEARS has also uncovered a circa 1953-1955 photo of Mathews holding a Hanna Batrite bat, thus proving unequivocally that Mathews did use Batrite bats. A copy of this photo accompanies. This is an extremely rare, documented 1950s Mathews game bat and its unique status is reflected in its grade of A9.5. Only the deadwood on the reverse of the barrel, which resulted in a loss of a half-point, has kept this bat from achieving a perfect grade of A10. Mathews, of course, was one of baseball's greatest sluggers, amassing a total of 512 home runs over the course of his seventeen-year career (1952-68). He was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1978. Length: 34.87 inches. Weight: 34.7 ounces. This bat has been consigned to this auction directly from the personal collection of world-renowned bat authenticator David Bushing. LOAs from Dave Bushing & Troy Kinunen/MEARS and James Spence/JSA and Steve Grad, Mike Gutierrez & Zach Rullo/PSA DNA. Reserve $1,000. Estimate $2,000/$4,000. SOLD FOR $3,770.00
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