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    Description

    Bench becomes youngest National League MVP in history in his finest statistical season!

    1970 Johnny Bench Game Worn Cincinnati Reds Jersey, MEARS A9. It was a landslide victory for the twenty-two year old backstop in 1970 National League MVP voting as Bench claimed two-thirds of the Triple Crown with forty-five homers and 148 runs batted in to lead his Reds all the way to the pennant. Though he'd earn a second MVP just two years later, as well as ten Gold Gloves and fourteen All-Star rings throughout his Hall of Fame career, that 1970 season remains Bench's legacy in much the same way that 1927 belongs to Babe Ruth. As such, this is arguably the most significant Bench garment ever offered.

    The road grey flannel exhibits wear characterized by the experts at MEARS as "moderate to heavy," and despite the removal of the name on back that accounts for the sole grading deduction, the very clear stitching path left behind suggests little to no wear on the minor league level subsequent to Bench's ownership. Some light adhesive residue is almost certainly the result of mounting within a frame at some point, but no points are lost for this minor distraction.

    "Cincinnati" spans the chest in red and white tackle twill above a solid red number "5," that long-retired digit found in larger format on reverse as well. Custom-shortened sleeves perfectly match period photography of Bench. Lower left front tail is properly tagged "Wilson [size] 42" above a "1970" year identifier embroidered directly into the jersey body. This same embroidery style appears upon a grey swatch at interior collar reporting "Bench."

    Bench is widely considered the greatest catcher in the history of baseball--a title assigned to him most recently by ESPN--and arguably the most essential piston that propelled the Big Red Machine to dominance later in the decade from which this jersey derives. For those collectors directing their attention to those residents of the upper reaches of the baseball pantheon, this is a "can't lose" bidding proposition. LOA from MEARS, A9. LOA from Heritage Auctions.






    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    February, 2015
    21st-22nd Saturday-Sunday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 13
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 2,304

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