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    The Finest 1951 New York Yankees Team Signed Baseball Known, PSA Mint 9. In post-war New York Yankees autograph collecting, it simply doesn't get any better than this. While many immortal World Championship squads have called the Bronx home in the past six decades, the 1951 team brings something to the table that no other pinstriped crew could match: the single-season convergence of the Yankee Clipper and the Commerce Comet. As the torch was passed at the center of a thirty-three year stretch that found one of these two top-tier Hall of Famers occupying the center field grass of Yankee Stadium, only a small quantity of baseballs offering genuine signatures from both was produced. Often DiMaggio, one of the most famous men in the country in 1951, would turn over signing duties to clubhouse assistants. And the rookie Mantle struggled considerably in his first season, and spent more than a third of it training in the minors. Any 1951 team ball blessed by authentic autographs of both Mantle and DiMaggio is held with the highest reverence in the collecting community as a result.

    This, however, is not just any such ball. Surely the catalog images express this sentiment very well, and should adequately back our claim that we present here the most desirable 1951 Yankees team ball on earth. The OAL (Harridge) sphere remains all but untouched by the passing of fifty-four years since its creation, with the pale horsehide of its surface mellowing only a fraction of a shade from its original brilliance. The autographs themselves, all twenty-six of them, are comparably free of signs of aging, looking for all the world as if they were signed only minutes ago. DiMaggio's gorgeous signature finds its proper home on the sweet spot, as the nineteen-year old Mantle pays his dues as one of the masses on a side panel. Among his teammates present: Berra, Houk, Rizzuto, Dickey, Burdette, Mize, McDougald (1951 ROY), Reynolds, Lopat and Stengel. Not a single signature falls below 9/10 in boldness and legibility.

    We must further note that the appearance of Lou Burdette and Joe Page, each of whom represented the Yanks in 1950 but not in 1951, dates this ball definitively to 1951 spring training, making it not only the finest of its kind to hit the auction block, but also the earliest example of Mantle on a team signed Yankees ball. After a lonely half-century hidden away in a dark attic, this pristine baseball enters the collecting world for the first time, ready to become the crown jewel of any fine autograph collection. LOA from Steve Grad & Zach Rullo/ PSA DNA.
    UPDATE: In 1951 it was common practice for clubhouse personnel to perform signing duties for Stengal and please note that his signature has been deemed secretarial on this example.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    May, 2005
    14th Saturday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 20
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 7,477

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    19.5% of the successful bid (minimum $9) per lot.

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