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Lot # 780 (of 1594)   < Previous Lot | Next Lot >

1990 Larry Doby Autographed Collection Including Twenty Limited-Edition Bats (52)

Starting Bid - $500.00, Sold For - $3,231.25

Presented is a "time capsule" of fifty-two signed Larry Doby items, consigned directly from the promoter who personally worked with Larry Doby in 1990, long before Doby was elected to the Hall of Fame. This was the first of Doby's few formal signings. The primary item conceived and marketed was a limited-edition signed bat. This was a very small operation: only sixty-four numbered bats were made by Adirondack for the project, each an exact replica of Doby's 1951-1957 model. All were signed by Doby. Forty-four bats were sold; the remaining twenty bats were kept by the promoter, who pursued the project as a hobbyist and as a way to honor Doby's achievments. The advertisements in trade papers for the bats at the time also offered signed photographs and balls, and the twelve signed baseballs and twenty signed photos in this lot also originate directly from this early hobby signing project.

Timing is everything. Doby, the grandson of a slave, was one of baseball's most important and underappreciated pioneers. While no one can downplay the achievements of Jackie Robinson in breaking the Major League color barrier in 1947, it has long been an injustice in the eyes of many historians that Larry Doby, who broke the American League color barrier that same year, has always received so little recognition compared to Robinson. Larry Doby joined the Cleveland Indians in August 1947, just eleven weeks after Robinson debuted with the Dodgers. Although he endured the same racial pressures and problems encountered by Robinson, he did so with far less media attention. As he later recalled: "You didn't hear much about what I was going through because the media didn't want to repeat the same story." That story, however, bears repeating, as Doby overcame the same obstacles that Robinson did in becoming one of the top players in the league. Like Robinson, Doby made an immediate impact on his team and the following season he led Cleveland to their first World Championship in twenty-eight years. A seven-time All-Star, Doby finished his career with a .283 average, 253 home runs, and 970 RBI. He was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1998.

This collection of fifty-two Larry Doby single-signed items is comprised of twenty limited-edition commemorative bats, twelve baseballs and twenty 8 x 10-inch color photos.
Bats: Each bat (34 inches in length) is an exact replica of a 1951-1957 Adirondack pro-model bat and has been signed by Doby on the barrel in blue Sharpie (grading "10"). These signed bats were issued in a limited-edition of only sixty-four. Each bat bears a black plaque affixed to the barrel that not only records Doby's achievements but also lists the distribution number of the bat (i.e., "10 of 62"). The bat numbers offered here are: 10, 13, 14, 21, 26, 32, 33, 41, 44, 46-48, 54, 55, 57, 58, and 60-63. Baseballs: Twelve official American League (Brown) balls, each signed by Doby in blue ink (grading "10") across the sweet spot. Five of the balls display a few small areas of very light age toning, otherwise all are in Near Mint condition (in their original boxes). Photos: Twenty 8 x 10-inch color photos, each signed by Doby in blue Sharpie (grading "10"). Four different images are represented here (five photos per image) and all are in Near Mint condition. All of these items have been consigned directly from the promoter who oversaw their signing in 1990 (the 40th anniversary of Doby's Major League debut) and represent the remainder of his personal inventory. LOA from James Spence/JSA. Reserve $500. Estimate (open).

SOLD FOR $3,231.25

(Click the smaller thumbnails to the left and right (if any) to cycle through each photo in the gallery of images for this lot.)