Winter Auction 2021 Ending March 6-7
Search By:
This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on 3/7/2021

The 83-year-old tradition of staging an "All-Star Game" in the middle of the regular season began at Comisky Park in Chicago in 1933.  The first Major League All-Star Game was engineered as a delightful adjunct to the central extravaganza of the Chicago World's Fair of 1933-34 – labeled the "Century of Progress."  Many of the most beloved historical stars of the game participated, including a number of eventual Hall of Famers like Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig.  Still, many did not foresee at the time that this event would, in fact, become an annual tradition of epic proportions, a showcasing of baseball's finest athletes.

While attending this still referred to as ‘Century of Progress baseball game’ in 1933, Charles Cresto had the rare opportunity to secure an errant baseball that got loose from the field.  Cresto was up to the task and his retrieval of this ball has been documented in the accompanying newspaper article detailing the event.  As the article explains, initially a police officer tried to get the ball back from Cresto but the latter protested vehemently.  In fact, it was not until Phillies shortstop Dick Bartell told the “ossifer” to lay off that Cresto was allowed to keep it.

The newspaper article further details how Cresto proceeded to approach a number of players seeking autographs on his new prized possession.  Not surprisingly, the first person whose autograph Cresto sought was the larger than life baseball hero Babe Ruth.  Interestingly, the article states Ruth said “He was signing nothing that day” but relented to Cresto’s pleas.  The fact that Ruth did not intend to sign anything that day could logically lead to a conclusion that very few, if any, other baseballs were signed by Ruth at this event.

Fortunately for fans of baseball history, Ruth has scrolled his unmistakable penmanship across one of the ball’s panels, creating a masterpiece black fountain pen signature that delivers all of his autograph's familiar grandeur.  After securing Ruth’s signature, Cresto went on to obtain, in the same medium, the precise, confident scripting of the immortal Lou Gehrig on another panel.  A third panel boasts the signature of Hall of Fame great Jimmie Foxx described in the article as “Connie Mack’s hard hitting first baseman.”  In addition, the ball's two National League representatives – Chicago Cubs catcher Gabby Hartnett and Philadelphia Phillies shortstop Dick Bartell (who played the aforementioned role in the ball’s survival)– placed their names in proximity to the facsimile "William Harridge" rendering. "Century of Progress - July 6, 1933," is inscribed on the sweet spot, a nod to the celebration of the city's centennial, and to the inspiration for the occasion of the ball's signing.

Along with the newspaper article that validates how the baseball was obtained at this historic event, Mears authentication services have also evaluated the baseball and concluded, “…this is the correct Official American League baseball which would have been used during the 1933 All Star game in Chicago.”  The Mears letter which includes assessments of the stamping/dating, circumference, weight, manufacturer, game use and provenance will accompany the item.

This historic game used baseball also provides an ideal canvas for its outstanding signature content.  The ball's surface reveals scattered areas of toning and scuffing while remaining sufficiently light in tone to afford very satisfactory display quality. The manufacturer's stampings are bold and legible, nicely complementing the favorable positioning and intensity of the desirable player signatures. Accompanying this item is the newspaper article detailing the item’s provenance as well as LOAs from PSA/DNA (W08980) to authenticate the signatures on the ball and MEARS to authenticate the ball’s game use.

Current Bidding
Minimum Bid: $7,500.00
Final prices include buyers premium.: $26,400.00
Number Bids: 16
Auction closed on Monday, March 8, 2021.
Email A Friend
Ask a Question
Have One To Sell

Auction Notepad


You may add/edit a note for this item or view the notepad:  

Submit    Delete     View all notepad items