1910-15 Ty Cobb Game Used Bat, PSA/DNA GU 9.5. "A ...Click the image to load the highest resolution version.
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One of the finest Cobb bats on Earth!1910-15 Ty Cobb Game Used Bat, PSA/DNA GU 9.5. "A ball bat is a wondrous weapon," Cobb once reported, and arguably none in the sport's history have been as proficient in its use. Though Pete Rose famously knocked the Peach from his perch in 1985, it's only fair to report that Charlie Hustle recorded 14,053 at bats compared to Cobb's 11,434. Had the Hall of Fame's first inductee kept his average pace through another 2,600 at bats to match Rose's chances, he'd be the sole member of the 5,000 Hit Club. Cobb remains the career leader with a .366 batting average, a record as safe as any in American sport.
So it's little wonder that many consider a Cobb game used bat to be the Holy Grail of the baseball collectibles world, and few could match the presented model in desirability. The J.F. Hillerich & Son Co. dash-dot-dash exhibits extraordinary game use from the heart of Cobb's peerless career, the production span containing the last six seasons of an unbroken nine-year chain of American League batting titles. Twice during this period, the fiery young southerner surpassed the fabled .400 mark, his career-best .419 corresponding with his sole MVP Award in 1911.
The experts at PSA/DNA properly characterize the game use of this extraordinary relic as "tremendous," referencing swarms of ball marks, cleat divots, and professionally repaired handle crack, knob chip and barrel grain separation. Clearly this lumber was a long-tenured servant to its iconic owner. The residue of an ancient and since-removed handle grip tape application is apparent at the handle.
The atypical location of Cobb's facsimile signature on the barrel allows for the dating of this battle-scarred beauty, as the name would scoot to the right in later incarnations. You can see this rare variation in a photo of Cobb on page 100 of Richard Bak's book, Ty Cobb, His Tumultuous Life and Times--not this exact bat, but identical in format. The historic weapon measures thirty-four and a half inches (34.5") in length, and tips the scales at a hefty thirty-eight ounces (38 oz.).
While any bat blessed by the touch of the Hall of Fame's first member carries enormous collecting intrigue, the vast majority of surviving exemplars date to the 1920's, thus representative of the Live Ball Era rather than the Dead. This early model thus ranks with the very finest Cobb bats known and, as such, one of the most important game used baseball bats that exists, full stop. LOA from PSA/DNA, GU 9.5.
Guide Value or Estimate: $300,000 - up.
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