June 01, 2012
(Photo credit: cardboardconnection.com)
(Editor’s Note: Philadelphia area sports writer Ben Horrow has joined the writing staff of Authentically Speaking. In his first column for us, Ben reviews some recent eye-popping news when it comes to valuable uniforms worn by some of baseball’s best-known names.)
By Ben Horrow
This past holiday weekend, former Yankees pitcher Don Larson announced that he wanted to sell the jersey he wore pitching a perfect game in Game 5 of the 1956 World Series. Larson wants to auction the jersey, as well as the pants, to the highest bidder in order to ensure that his estate has adequate funds to pay for his grandchildren’s college education.
The auction will be transpired this fall between October and December.
Larson, of course, remains the only pitcher to ever toss a perfect game in the World Series, a historic moment in Yankees and Major League Baseball history.
Larson’s catcher in that iconic game, never owned the shirt he wore that
day. Instead, believe it or not, the
recycled jersey landed in the hands of a tryout player who held on to it for
more than half a century, before putting it up for auction in 2010. Winning bid: $565,000.
For comparison’s sake, as was recently spotlighted on Authentically Speaking, a 1920’s Babe Ruth jersey sold for $4.4 million at auction, the most ever for a piece of sports memorabilia.
Other recent MLB apparel auction news includes the sale of a 1965 Sandy Koufax Dodgers jersey for $166,818. In 1965 Koufax won one of his three Cy Young awards and was awarded the World Series MVP award.
In addition, Grey Flannel Auction announced that the owner of Reggie Jackson’s rookie Kansas City Athletics jersey would be selling the uniform. The Athletics played in Kansas City from 1955 until 1967 before moving to northern California. The jersey’s colors are green and yellow, with Jackson’s number 31 on the front along with the Athletics signature “A”.
One other uniform note: You may have noticed an interesting patch on Baltimore Orioles jerseys this season. The patch commemorates the 20th anniversary of the opening of Orioles Park at Camden Yards.
The building of the park at Camden Yards marked the beginning of a new wave of ballpark designs. Camden Yards, Progressive Field, and other modern stadiums have rustic feels to them giving the fan the experience of watching a modern day MLB game in an older style stadium. Oriole’s players wear the patch on both home and away jerseys and will wear the patches for the entire 2012 season.
There’s a whole lotta throwbacking going on: It starts tonight with our season long favorites the Astros going back to the great 1975-86 era with the jersey they wore both home and away for five of those seasons (1975-79) as they take on the Reds at Minute Maid Park. They will break those out again on June 22 against Cleveland.
And, yes, they’ll don orange caps, joining the Marlins in that category this season.
Saturday in San Francisco it’s a “Turn Back the Century” game as the Cubs and Giants will don the old-time look with 1912 uniforms. The Cubs 1912 hat has been a big hit with online purchases through the store this spring.