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    1931 Tour of Japan Team Signed Baseball. The 1934 Tour was the more famous of the two Depression-era baseball excursions to the Land of the Rising Sun, and the population of available relics bears this out. Material from the 1931 Tour is considerably more scarce, and this is one of the few which made it back.

    Spalding ONL (Heydler) sphere is inscribed "1931 U.S. Team Touring Japan" at the top of one of the side panels and signed by fifteen of America's finest baseball ambassadors, including Hall of Famers Lefty Grove (sweet spot), Lou Gehrig, Al Simmons, Mickey Cochrane, Rabbit Maranville, Frankie Frisch (secretarial), and George "High Pockets" Kelly. Others of note in attendance include Lefty O'Doul, Muddy Ruel, Billy Cunningham, Ralph Shinners, Willie Kamm, Larry French, Tom Oliver and sportswriter Fred Lieb.

    The ball was coated with a light coat of shellac to preserve the signatures and has since aged to an attracted cream color. There are a few chips in the shellac which intersect with some of the autographs but the distraction which they produce is minimal. The black steel-tip fountain pen signatures grade an overall 7/10 in strength, with Simmons an 8/10, Grove a 7.5/10, and Gehrig a 6.5/10. Full LOA from PSA/DNA.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    October, 2019
    17th-25th Thursday-Friday
    Internet/Mail Bids: 4
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 322

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