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    1936-44 Joe DiMaggio Game Used Bat. An American icon if there ever was one, Joe DiMaggio appeared on the scene in the Bronx just in time to soak up the hero worship that had been lying dormant after the Babe's departure from New York. Yes, Lou Gehrig had remained behind, but Joltin' Joe inspired in the baseball viewing populace a feeling that even the great Iron Horse couldn't muster. The most gorgeous swing in the history of the game, a fluidity in the field that didn't just make the impossible possible, but made it look easy. It was evident almost immediately that the Bronx was seeing something truly remarkable in this young Italian kid from California. DiMaggio, they thought, could be the greatest all-around ballplayer that ever lived.

    Close to seventy years after his debut in pinstripes, many continue to hold to this opinion. Mickey Mantle always thought so, and so too did Ted Williams. "He's the most complete ballplayer I've ever seen," boasted Hall of Fame manager Joe McCarthy. It's rumored that Marilyn Monroe liked him a good bit as well. The New York sports pages couldn't get enough of him, and his 1941 fifty-six game hitting streak remained unmatched as a serial baseball story until Mantle and Maris teamed up to chase the Babe in 1961.

    We are very pleased to present the definitive artifact from the legend of Joe DiMaggio, a game used bat that saw action during the early part of his Hall of Fame career. It was this style that he used as twenty-one year old rookie during the Championship season of 1936, the historic 1939 Centennial season that saw Gehrig's tearful farewell and DiMaggio crowned M.V.P., and the greatest hitting streak in the game's history in 1941. It is impossible to pin the bat definitively to any particular season between 1936 and his departure for service in 1942, but any of these are potentially the correct vintage. It matters little--he didn't have a single poor season during that stretch, always clearing .300 (and usually by a wide margin), and averaging well over thirty home runs a year.

    The signature model Hillerich & Bradsby D29 is identical in every detail to known DiMaggio gamers, matching factory records exactly, from the thirty-four ounce weight and thirty-five inch length to the small knob he favored. Expert Dave Bushing characterizes the use as "heavy," which certainly stands to reason for a man who averaged close to 200 hits a season. Yet despite the punishment of the barrel, the bat remains uncracked, most likely because DiMaggio was too skilled to swing at a bad inside pitch. In short, it's a picture perfect Joe DiMaggio gamer, earning the stellar rating of A8 from Bushing, which makes it the highest rated DiMaggio rookie-era bat ever to reach the market. LOA from Dave Bushing.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    October, 2006
    28th Saturday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 1
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 424

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

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