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    With letter of provenance from scout Dick Groch

    1992 Derek Jeter New York Yankees Scouting Report. To call baseball talent prognostication "an imperfect science" is a towering understatement. For every Lou Gehrig and Mickey Mantle that has been harvested from the vast acreage of America's sandlots, there have been hundreds--thousands--of Next Big Things that never made it big. Even many of those who have worn the pinstripes to distinction have proven our initial hopes had been too high--Joe Pepitone, Bobby Murcer, Masahiro Tanaka. Each was heralded as a pantheon player on the rise upon his respective Bronx debut, only to have been revealed a mere mortal after all.

    This prologue is written not to diminish those rock-solid, if not gilded, athletes, nor the scouts and staffers who dreamt too big, but rather to provide the proper context for understanding just how remarkable, how improbable, how truly beautiful it is when the fairy tale actually does come true.

    We present the opening chapter of one of our absolute favorites here, a document as significant to the last quarter century of New York Yankees history as the Babe Ruth sale contract was to its first. The handwriting is that of Yankees scout Dick Groch, who ventured to the ballfield of Kalamazoo (MI) Central High School on April 8, 1992 to see a lanky seventeen-year-old shortstop named Derek S. Jeter.

    The single-page form glimmers with praise about Jeter's arm, his "quick bat," his blazing foot speed. But the conclusion is our favorite. Under the heading entitled "Summation and Signability," Groch records:

    "A Yankee! A five tool player. Will be a ML Star! +5!!"

    Even that glowing assessment seems restrained today, with the clarity of a hindsight that contains a Rookie of the Year Award, five World Championship rings, Gold Gloves and Silver Sluggers and a bronze plaque in Monument Park, with another to come at Cooperstown. It's a bold statement, we know--and with apologies to Yogi--our single hand of the greatest Yankees of them all is counted as follows: Ruth, Gehrig, DiMaggio, Mantle, Jeter.

    The 8.5x11" page exhibits punch holes along left edge, paper clip indentations and a small, insignificant rust stain at top center. Included are two carbon copies that have remained with the original since production. Letter of provenance from scout Dick Groch.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    December, 2017
    10th Sunday
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