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    "I've only known three or four perfect swings in my time – this lad has one of them." -- Ty Cobb

    1952 Eddie Mathews Game Worn Boston Braves Rookie Jersey, MEARS A9. The practice of Major League teams donating their used uniforms for a second life in the farm system proved to be a winning lottery ticket for the consignor of this remarkable home white flannel, first worn by a talented twenty-year old kid from Texarkana, Texas in his debut Major League season. Though our consignor failed to realize his own Big League dreams, the man who first wore this shirt proved himself to be one of the greatest sluggers in history, earning baseball immortality and a Cooperstown plaque with 512 home runs, twelve All-Star nods and two World Series Championships.

    The only man to represent the Braves franchise in three cities, Mathews labored just a single season in Boston before the Milwaukee relocation, adding even further appeal to the presented garment as the last ever Boston National League issue. His twenty-five home runs that rookie campaign included three in the Braves' final home game in Boston, establishing Mathews as the first rookie in Major League history to post a long ball hat trick. With the issuance of two home and two road jerseys a time honored tradition in the Majors, the probability that this is the shirt he was wearing in that historic contest is equal to a coin flip.

    The Majors' finest fashion is in full effect here, with the gorgeous tomahawk patch on the chest and Indian head at left sleeve unmatched in aesthetics. A red and black felt "Braves" script on the chest gives way to the number "41" on verso that would be retired by the franchise seventeen years later. Boston-based sporting goods manufacturer "Horace Partridge Athletic Goods" label is applied at interior collar, with "44" size designator. A pair of embroidered swatches in the tail announce "Mathews" and "52."

    The jersey remains in 100% original and unaltered condition, right down to the rather uniquely crafted buttons on the chest. The back collar seam has begun to split, but could be very simply anchored if desired with a few loops of thread. Strong wear is to be expected from a full Major and minor league season of use, but the jersey presents marvelously with just light soiling. With "Farewell Boston" pedigree, rookie Hall of Famer heritage and eye-popping good looks, this is a shirt that would draw a crowd even behind the plexiglass at Cooperstown. LOA from Heritage Auctions. Letter of provenance from consignor. LOA from MEARS, A9.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    May, 2012
    3rd-5th Thursday-Saturday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 8
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 3,096

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