Lot 2. Ralph Kiner Autographed Rare Bust Sculpture. This plaster sculpture, which has a gold or bronze finish, is about 7.5” tall, 6.5” across and 2.75” deep. It depicts Kiner in a Pirates jersey that includes his No. 4 on the back. His name is on a “pedestal” on the front. How uncommon is this item? When we had Kiner sign it in 1995, he said he had never seen another. His sharpie autograph is unimprovable and extends almost four inches across the back of the jersey. The sculpture has some tiny chips in the finish. Ex-m. Kiner’s accomplishments included leading the National League in home runs in his first seven seasons, from 1946-52. Twice he hit more than 50 home runs in a season. He passed away in February. Kevin Keating and JSA Authentication both authenticated the autograph, and it comes with the ticket from the Pittsburgh show where Kiner signed the statue. The JSA Auction Letter of Authenticity may be exchanged at a discount for a full LoA.
Winning Bid $630
Lot 26. Roberto Clemente Single Autograph on a Puerto Rican-Manufactured Baseball. Surface wear to the ball helps account for a Clemente signature that is light. Just to the left of the sweet spot, the autograph rates a f-g 1-2. It clearly is Clemente’s (in green), and a least 25% of the lettering can be read. In an unknown hand, the ball has a notation in Spanish and “1973” to indicate the year Clemente died. He actually perished the evening of Dec. 31, 1972. Authenticated by Kevin Keating.
Winning Bid $273
Lot 38. 67 Pittsburgh Pirates Autographs, 27 by Members of the 1960 Championship Team. Signatures of 18 players who defeated the New York Yankees are on 8” x 10” photos: Bill Mazeroski, Tom Cheney, ElRoy Face, Bob Friend, Joe Gibbon, Fred Greene, Dick Groat, Harvey Haddix, Vernon Law, Sam Narron, Rocky Nelson, Bob Oldis, Dick Schofield, Bob Skinner, Hal Smith, Dick Stuart, Bill Virdon and George Witt. Nine other team members signed unlined index cards: Dick Barone, Joe Christopher, Bennie Daniels, Paul Giel, Don Gross, Danny Kravitz, Frank Oceak (lined cut), Virgil Trucks and Mickey Vernon. Other Pirates signers are from various eras. Cliff Chambers and Bill Werle autographed early 1950s 6.5” x 9” team issues. Warranting special mention are Dale Long on an exhibit card (personalized) and, on unlined index cards, Ed and Johnny O’Brien (separate cards), Rip Sewell, Chuck Tanner and Bob Veale. Five signers of unlined index cards played in the 1920s or earlier: Clyde L. Barnhart, Adam Debus, Carmen P. “Bunker” Hill, G Eddie Moore, Royal “Hunky” Shaw and Glenn Wright. Various signatures are on Rowe postcards (last names listed, both names present): Allie, Bartirome, Bowman, Montemayor, Munger, Necciai, Pendleton, Rescigno, Rubeling, Swigart, Ward, Waugh and Wilkie. Other index card signatures are by John Barrett, Briles, Ramon Hernandez, May, Milner, Moreno, Plaskett, R. C. Stevens and Luke Walker. Harry Walker signed a trading card, John Fitzpatrick a magazine photo and Wally Westlake a 3.25’ x 4” photo. Almost all of these autographs are at least nm-m 8. Authenticated by Kevin Keating.
Winning Bid $132
Lot 40. Pittsburgh Pirates 1918 Season Pass Issued to the Wife of HoFer Max Carey. The complimentary pass, No. 108, contains a facsimile autograph of team president Barney Dreyfuss. In vintage steel-tipped pen, it says to admit “Mrs Max Carey.” Measuring 2.5” x 5”, it shows five punches from admission to games. Vg+ to ex. Outstanding defensively and superb on the base paths, Carey was the Pirates’ regular center fielder from 1911-26. He was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1961.
Winning Bid $185
Lot 41. Extremely Rare Engraved Photo of the 1923 Pittsburgh Pirates Team. The 1923 Pirates were led by manager Bill McKechnie and fielded four players now in the Hall of Fame – Bill McKechnie, Max Carey, Kiki Cuyler, Pie Traynor and Rabbit Maranville. They finished third in the N.L. pennant race. They and their teammates are pictured in a photo that has the players identified and promotes the Superior Engraving Co. of Pittsburgh. The photo itself is approximately 4.25” x 12.5”, while the full printed piece is approximately 7” x 14”. It is matted and framed to 11.5” x 18.5”. The engraving has vertical folds and creases and a couple of light stains. We are unaware of another copy. This example comes from the collection of a veteran, serious Pittsburgh collector.
Winning Bid $204
Lot 42. 1925 Metal Print Block for the “World Champion Pirates.” Before the digital era, movable type was used in producing newspapers, books and magazines. From the late 19th century until the 1960s-70s, linotype machines typically provided the letters. Print blocks were used to provide the images and borders. This print block is approximately 1.75” x 1.75”, and the image area is 1.25” in diameter. The image consists of a Pirate who holds a dagger in his teeth surrounded by text saying “World Champion Pirates 1925.” This rare relic of Pittsburgh’s 1925 world championship is nm.
Winning Bid $92
Lot 43. Bill McKechnie Rare Program for a 1928 Pittsburgh Testimonial Dinner. Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1962, McKechnie was the first manager to lead two different teams to world champions. He is one of only two manager to win league championships with three different teams. In 1925, his Pirates defeated Washington in the World Series. A season later, the Pirates dumped him when the team finished third. In part, some historians attribute the team’s decline to the presence of Fred Clarke, hired by the Pirates as an “adviser” to McKechnie. Apparently some of Clarke’s blunt comments led to a short-lived revolt among the players. McKechnie joined the St. Louis Cardinals’ coaching staff in 1927 and became the manager a year later. The testimonial dinner for McKechnie was held when the Cardinals were in Pittsburgh for a three-game series. McKechnie’s photo is on the cover of the black and gold program, which is bound by a ribbon at the top. Pirates broadcaster Rosey Rowswell presided over the event. Speakers were Pennsylvania Governor John Tener, a former major league player; Branch Rickey, who was vice president of the Cardinals, and Samuel Watters, an executive with Pittsburgh. Containing three songs that honor McKechnie, the 6.25” x 9” program was folded vertically and has several other creases. It is very rarely seen.
Winning Bid $61
Lot 44. Honus Wagner Co. Circa 1930s “Official Hickory Diamond Ball Bat.” This 34” A1 bat has the Wagner Co. logo with the Flying Dutchman’s facsimile autograph engraved in the center. “Pittsburg, U.S.A.” is spelled without the “h.” Wagner opened a sporting goods store in Pittsburgh in 1918 and established the Honus Wagner Co. in 1922. In 1929, he sold the store, the company and the right to use his name to E. L. Braunstein. The store closed in 2011. Engravings on the bat remain strong, and there are no cracks or repairs. Vg-ex.
Winning Bid $273
Lot 45. 4 Pittsburgh Pirates Lithographs – 2 from the Opening Day of PNC Park. In “PNC Park – Opening Day – April 9th 2001,” Jim Trusilo artwork provides an aerial view of a capacity crowd and a game in progress. The 18” x 24” print is #788 of 5,000, rolled, ex-m and signed by Trusilo. A photographic image of the first game comes from Rob Arra in a 13.5” x 39 color panorama titled “First Pitch.” Todd Ritchie was the pitcher, and Barry Larkin, the batter. The pitch was a ball. The rolled panorama is ex-m. Jason Bay as 2004 N.L. Rookie of the Year and 2005 and 2006 All-Star is the subject of an 18” x 24” print. Rolled and nm, it has three images of Bay as a Pittsburgh Pirate. Willie Stargell is the focus of a 19” x 22” color lithograph that depicts him and other Pirates celebrating after they won the 1971 World Series. With artwork by widely respected artist Rich Marks, the lithograph is #700 of 4,000, signed by Marks, rolled and ex.
Winning Bid $55