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This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on 8/2/2018

On the scale of incredible game used finds, this has to rank among the highest – Cap Anson’s game used bat from his final Major League season. Adrian Anson, known as “Cap” for his captain position on the Chicago Colts, was the first superstar of the National League. Anson began his career in 1871 with the Rockford Forest Citys of the National Association but really made his name while playing first base for the Chicago White Stockings (later named the “Colts” and finally, “Cubs”). He led Chicago to five championships and became the first player to reach the hallowed 3,000 career hits mark. He was wildly popular throughout his career and capitalized on his fame by touring on the vaudeville circuit. His career totals in RBI, runs, hits, singles and doubles, are still Chicago Cubs’ franchise records to this day, and he was elected to the Hall of Fame the year it opened its doors in 1939.

In 1897, his last season as a player, Anson was 45-years-old, yet still managed a nice .285 average along with a pair of homers in 114 games. His last two games were a Sunday doubleheader in St. Louis against the Browns. Cap had three hits in the first game and though hitless in the second, was hit by a pitch and promptly swiped a base. Not a bad way for a 45-year-old to wrap up 26 seasons in the Majors!

Incredibly, offered here is the very bat Cap Anson used during his final day as a Major Leaguer. This artifact has a familial provenance as it came directly from Darryl Sherwood, Cap Anson’s Great Grandson. This bat, along with his final 1897 game used uniform, was originally given by Cap himself to his daughter (Sherwood’s Grandmother) who in turn passed it to her own daughter (Sherwood’s mother) who stored it in their residence while he was growing up. The 1897 uniform was accidently damaged and later sold off, but Cap’s last bat remained with his Great Grandson until he parted with the heirloom in 2005. The bat is a J.F. Hillerich and Son bat, which can be definitively dated to 1897 due to the center brand. This was the very first style of center brand that would come to be the trademark of the Louisville Slugger Company. This first application of the center brand is different in that it was stamped into the bat “upside down” or “reversed,” meaning its placement is facing the opposite way than is found on later bats. This makes this bat one of the oldest Louisville Slugger bats that can be labeled as game used by a Major League player.

The only other game used bat of this age is a Hugh Duffy model now in the collection of the Louisville Slugger Museum in Kentucky. Condition-wise, the bat exhibits outstanding game use. This was obviously Cap’s most prized bat during his final season, and the wear on its surface shows this to be true. There are numerous ball marks present on the barrel along with light checking from repeated ball contact. Period repairs in the form of three small screws and one small nail are found on the front barrel. Because the bat spent some time stored in a basement, there is some grain swelling on the left and right barrel from moisture. This has been secured and the finish restored to its original luster. Vintage cleat imprints are present on the front barrel and the handle has been carefully scored with 145 notches to enhance Cap’s grip on the bat. An incredible piece of baseball history used during the final season and game by the greatest player of the 19th century. The bat comes with a LOA from PSA/DNA (G55620) for the game use, grading a perfect GU 10 and an affidavit from Darryl Sherwood for the family provenance.

Current Bidding
Minimum Bid: $125,000.00
Final prices include buyers premium.: $349,837.50
Number Bids: 13
Auction closed on Sunday, August 12, 2018.
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