Description1968 Steve Carlton Game Worn St. Louis Cardinals Jersey. Early career gamer dates to what was arguably the most important season in the development of a pitcher who would come to prominence as one of the most dominant southpaws ever to take the mound. Though the St. Louis pitching spotlight was firmly directed at fellow future Hall of Famer Bob Gibson and his outrageous 1.12 ERA Cy Young-winning campaign, Carlton began experimentation with his trademark slider during this National League Championship season, beginning the transition from a solid number three starter to a first-ballot Hall of Famer.
The enormous historical relevance of this home white flannel is only part of the appeal, however, and the experts at MEARS spare no superlatives in rating this rare garment a perfect A10. First and foremost, it must be stressed that the jersey remains in 100% complete and original condition, spared the post-Majors farm club relegation which claimed countless flannels of the day. The classic chenille bat and birds logo is still perfect on the chest, as is the two-tone felt number "32" just below the heart. The verso likewise presents in its original state, with "Carlton" gently arching over a larger number "32" below. Proper "Rawlings [size] 42" label appears at lower left front tail, balanced by a washing instructions tag and "Set 1 1968" flap just above the hem. Sandwiched in between is a red chainstitched "Carlton 68," properly embroidered directly into the jersey body. MEARS characterizes the jersey's wear as "light to moderate," and a bold black sharpie signature from Carlton, notated "HOF 94" appears on chest.
In every regard a Cooperstown-quality relic, this pale flannel jersey is a key relic from one of the most consequential eras of both Carlton as a budding superstar and the St. Louis Cardinals franchise at large. LOA from MEARS, A10. LOA from Heritage Auctions. Pre-certified by PSA/DNA (autograph). Auction LOA from James Spence Authentication (autograph).
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