There are currently no items available for purchase in this Department. Search our Auction Archives below to find item values.
Opening Bid :
Current Bid:
Reserve Amount:

You are the current high bidder on this lot with a secret maximum bid of %bidPretty%.
(%bidBP% w/Buyer's Premium (BP) Buyer's Premium).


Notice: You are the current high bidder on this lot, but the next highest bid is within one increment. That means that any additional bids on this lot will outbid you. To increase your chances of winning, enter your highest maximum bid.

You are the current high bidder on this lot with a secret maximum bid of %bidPretty%.
(%bidBP% w/Buyer's Premium (BP) Buyer's Premium).

You are the current high bidder on this lot.
(Sign-In to see your maximum bid)

Your secret maximum bid of %bidPretty% has been outbid.

Your secret maximum bid of %bidPretty% does not meet the reserve.

(Sign-In to see your maximum bid)

Your secret maximum bid does not meet the reserve.
(Sign-In to see your maximum bid)

Lot
80787

The Only Known Vic Willis Single Signed Baseball....

2010 November Dallas Signature Sports Collectibles Auction #7028

 
Sold for: Sign-in or Join (free & quick)
Make Offer:

Owner's willingness to entertain and respond to Offers has not yet been verified. Make Offer to Owner
Auction Ended On: Nov 5, 2010
Item Activity: 7 Internet/mail/phone bidders Number of Bidders
2,597 page views
Location: Heritage Auctions
3500 Maple Avenue
Dallas, TX 75219
Description:
The Only Known Vic Willis Single Signed Baseball. One of the greatest collecting rarities ever presented by Heritage Auction Galleries makes its hobby debut here, only the fourth auction appearance (according to our comprehensive database) of the extraordinarily rare Vic Willis autograph in any format in the past dozen years, and the first on the hide of a baseball. The definitive hobby price guide, Sports Market Report, understandably lists the Vic Willis Single Signed Baseball as "Unknown." With this offering, history is rewritten.

Almost forgotten by modern baseball fans in the eighty-five years since his 1910 retirement from the sport, Willis suddenly burst back into the public consciousness with his posthumous 1995 induction to the Baseball Hall of Fame on a Veteran's Committee ballot. It was an honor long overdue. Willis' career 2.628 ERA left him just one-thousandth of a point behind fellow inductees Cy Young and Tim Keefe, and ahead of such legends as Iron Joe McGinnity, Charlie "Old Hoss" Radbourn and Jack Chesbro. Dividing his thirteen professional seasons mainly between the Boston Beaneaters and the Pittsburgh Pirates (with a final season as a St. Louis Cardinal), Willis reached the glorious peak of his career during his penultimate campaign, pitching the first game at the newly constructed Forbes Field en route to the Pirates' first World Championship in 1909.

After Willis' retirement at age thirty-four, he returned to his hometown of Newark, Delaware, where he owned and operated a hotel and, according to the Society of American Baseball Research website, managed semi-pro ball for a time. One must assume that it was during this period that this monumentally scarce autograph was acquired. The blue fountain pen ink signature is ideally situated on the sweet spot of a "Reach Lively League" ball, which would appear to date the piece to the 1920's or 1930's. Today the three letters of Willis' given name survive at a fully legible strength of 3/10, while his surname doubles the score to 6/10. A careful examination of the evenly toned horsehide finds no other writing or unsightly blemishes.

Along with such hobby rarities as Ed Delahanty, Addie Joss and Rube Waddell, Vic Willis has reasonably been considered a twentieth century Major League Hall of Fame autograph even the most advanced collectors must resign themselves to live without. Nobody had even dared to dream of a single signed baseball-on the sweet spot, no less!-until now. Even more remarkable than the Mordecai Brown single which commanded over $65,000 in our August "Platinum Night" Signature Auction, this once-in-a-lifetime ball will open with at $5,000 and sell with no reserve. Make no mistake--it's now or never. Full LOA from James Spence Authentication. Full LOA from PSA/DNA.

View large image(s) of this item

Service and Handling Description: Sportscard (view shipping information)

Sales Tax information  |  Terms and Conditions

Bidding Guidelines and Bid Increments

Find Auction Prices for Comparable Items:

Photographs:
Sign-in or Join (free & quick) to see the full image






FLOOR AUCTIONS View All
Open For Bidding
Coming Soon
HERITAGE MEMBERSHIP
866,952
bidder-members
$925,060,418
sold in the last year
VIEW BENEFITS
  1. Past Auction Values (prices, photos, full descriptions, etc.)
  2. Bid online
  3. Free Collector newsletter
  4. Want List with instant e-mail notifications
  5. Reduced auction commissions when you resell your
    winnings 
CONSIGNMENTS WANTED
Only 45 days left to consign to the 2014 July 31 - Aug 1 Sports Collectibles Platinum Night Auction - Cleveland!
Learn About Consigning With Us
Great performance. Checks on time.
T.M.,
Birmingham, AL
HERITAGE VIDEO TUTORIAL
GETTING THE MOST OUT OF SEARCH
VISIT HERITAGE ON THE ROAD
Map of upcoming Heritage events

Heritage Events Calendar

Toronto Sportcard and Memorabilia Expo
5/2-4/2014
Pittsburgh XXXVI Sports Card and Memorabilia Show
5/16-18/2014
[ view all events » ]
RECENT AUCTIONS
2014 February 22 - 23 Sports Collectibles Platinum Night Auction - New York
2014 February 22 - 23 Sports Collectibles Platinum Night Auction - New York
REALIZED $7,593,822
SPORTS SURVEY
You could win!
Take the Survey