2019 Summer Premium Live and Catalog Auction Lots 1-82 Close Aug 1- 83-end close 8/10
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The live portion of this session will begin Thursday, August 1, 2019 at 8:00 PM EDT.

Baseball has always had a love-hate relationship with change, and in no facet of the game is this more evident than in the uniforms worn by its players. While still basically retaining many of the same elements present on those worn in the late 19th century, baseball has occasionally implemented many details that echo current trends, such as zippers in the 1950s, sleeveless jerseys of the 1960s, and sansabelt pants and pullover polyester jerseys of the 1970s.

In the 1940s, the major innovation was satin uniforms. This seemingly bizarre choice of fabric came about when night games had ceased being a novelty and became a regular part of the baseball schedule. To liven up the visual impact of the nocturnal game, several National League teams began wearing satin uniforms on a limited basis. Under the lights, the new togs gave off a shimmering effect, and by the end of the decade the Dodgers, Reds, Braves and Cardinals wore various styles at home and on the road. Despite their attractiveness, the players thought them hotter than their usual flannels and not as durable. By the beginning of the 1950s the satins were taken out of rotation and relegated for use during spring training or sent to minor league affiliates to wear.

The Brooklyn Dodgers appear to have been the biggest proponent of the shimmering outfits, employing at least four distinctive styles from 1944 to 1948. This jersey, attributed to outfielder Carl Furillo, dates to the 1946 season, the only season in which the front of the home satins used a zipper closure. Worn for select home games, the jersey has the iconic “Dodgers” script across the chest just like their home flannels, but augmented with extra blue trim down each shoulder and arm opening. The front is closed with a zipper and the inside collar carries a Wilson label with a size “42” tag attached. “FURILLO” has been handwritten in period marking pen alongside the manufacturer’s label. The back has Furillo’s number “6” in blue satin. The uniform experts at MEARS have inspected this piece and opined that it may have been originally made for Dixie Howell or Frank Laga, both having been listed as being issued number “6” before the 1946 season began. However, neither Howell nor Laga played for Brooklyn in 1946. Carl Furillo started the season wearing number “29” before switching to his familiar number “6” in April or May of that year.

This was Furillo’s first full season in the majors, and he quickly became a fan favorite, particularly among the working-class Italians of Brooklyn. Furillo batted .284 for the Dodgers in ’46, helping Brooklyn end the season in a tie for first before losing to the Cardinals in a 3-game playoff. The original player name tag on this jersey has been removed and replaced by “FURILLO” in period marking pen, and MEARS believes that this jersey was issued to him when Howell and Laga failed to make the team. Though these satins were used only in select home games, this jersey shows heavy use and wear. This likely due to it having seen further use during spring training and by Dodgers coaches, who frequently wore these satin uniforms in spring training well into the 1950s. The white satin shows heavy toning along with staining from game use throughout. Despite the toning and staining, the jersey retains its original satin sheen. There is edge wear present, especially around the collar where the garment is frayed. There are loose threads found throughout but the body remains in sound condition. A unique piece from the very beginning of night baseball, this incredibly rare jersey comes with a LOA from MEARS, who have graded this jersey an A7.

1946 Carl Furillo Game Used Brooklyn Dodgers Satin Home Jersey (MEARS)
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