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Lot
81735

1979 Thurman Munson Game Used Catcher's Mitt....

2013 May 2 - 4 Vintage Sports Collectible Signature Auction - Dallas #7075

 
Sold for: Not Sold
Auction Ended On: May 3, 2013
Item Activity: 5 Internet/mail bidders
1,457 page views
Location: Heritage Auctions
3500 Maple Avenue
Dallas, TX 75219

Description:
Consigned by the Captain's roommate Gene Michael
1979 Thurman Munson Game Used Catcher's Mitt. Perhaps it was the unimaginable heartbreak of Lou Gehrig's decline and death that left a vacancy in the Yankee captain's chair for thirty-seven years beginning with the Iron Horse's retirement in 1939. After all, who could measure up to that lofty standard for leadership and resolve that the durable first baseman had exhibited through sixteen seasons of unfailing service? Ultimately, it would prove to be the man who wore this glove, the key component to the Bronx Bombers' return to greatness after nearly two decades lost in the wilderness. Little could anyone have known, when the new captain was named in 1976, that he would soon break millions of pinstriped hearts just as his predecessor had done.

Few teammates knew the sturdy backstop better than Gene Michael, who quickly became close with Munson upon his arrival in pinstripes. The two were paired up as roommates on road trip due to their shared collegiate alma mater, Kent State University. So after a decade traveling the American League together, the pair was akin to brothers when Munson's plane fell short of a Canton runway and burst into flames on August 2, 1979.

Presented is one of two personally owned Munson relics that his heartbroken friend acquired from famed Yankee clubhouse man Pete Sheehy as a remembrance of his fallen roommate and friend. Letters from Sheehy's successor Nick Priore and from Michael himself document the provenance, asserting that this glove (and the mask in the lot to follow) were used by Munson during the final baseball season of his life.

The top-quality Rawlings gamer exhibits solid use throughout, the sheepskin wrist lining matted with sweaty wear and the pocket cracked from drying and the impact of fastballs from Gossage, Guidry and Catfish Hunter. "MUNSON" appears in black marker on exterior pinky, partially inked over in green to suggest possible use by another backstop subsequent to Munson. Make no mistake, however--the attribution to the Captain is assured.

One of the most desirable and firmly provenanced relics orphaned by Munson, this important gamer makes its auction debut within the Signature event, consigned to the sale by Gene Michael directly. Letter of provenance from Nick Priore. Letter of provenance from Gene Michael.

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