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Babe Ruth and Christy Walsh Dual-Signed Baseball - Full JSA

Lot Number 1

Quantity: Bid Starts: 09/30/2013 12:00:00 
Bid Open: 1500.00  Bid Ends: 10/10/2013 23:30:00 
Bid Count: Overtime: 30 Minutes
Currently: 0.00  Time Left: Ended
View Count: 3767   
Bid Reserve: Reserve Not Met    
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Description

Just 103 home runs into his mythical career, before his new suitors, the New York Yankees, had ever appeared in a Fall Classic (an event they would come to define), 26 year-old Babe Ruth was the sizable and primary target for commercial and publicity opportunists. Thanks to fate and perseverance, one such agent “landed” Ruth and enjoyed a subsequent friendship to which no other partnership in the history of American sport can compare. Wondrous sentiments regarding that pairing are prompted by this rare and unusual keepsake: a baseball signed by Babe Ruth and his longtime business partner, Christy Walsh.

The subject of headlines after launching a record 29 round-trippers in 1919, Ruth’s star soared to dizzying heights following his 54-homer effort in the 1920 campaign, his first in the white-hot New York spotlight. Complying with all of the publicists at first, Ruth soon felt the smothering effects and quickly shunned all requests. Enter Walsh, a former sports cartoonist and ghost writer who made his mark with syndicated accounts of World War I flying ace Eddie Rickenbacker. To Ruth, however, Walsh was just another in a long line of parasites and thus, the Baltimore-born slugger would hear none of his proposals. Only happenstance got Walsh face to face with Ruth. With Prohibition in effect before the 1921 season, Walsh found himself in the delicatessen that delivered Ruth his bootleg beer. Hearing that the normal delivery boy was absent, Walsh alertly volunteered to deliver the beer to Ruth’s lavish Ansonia Hotel quarters. Once inside (and the recipient of a generous tip), Walsh went to work, asking Ruth how much he was paid by United Press in 1920 for his personal accounts of 54 home runs. When Ruth conveyed that he had earned five dollars per story, Walsh countered with an offer of “500 dollars for anything you write.” And so began a 15-year partnership of syndicated coverage that proved quite lucrative to both.

Along the way, the pair decorated this unofficial sphere with their bold endorsements. The off-white “Anchor Brand” orb (grade “6”) is affected by a series of minor abrasions. In its customary occupancy of the sweet spot, Ruth’s black-ink fountain penning projects (“6-7”) strength and clarity, with aforementioned abrasions preventing even higher assessment. On the south panel, Walsh’s scripting projects similar qualities and completes a rarely seen pairing of Ruth and his famed agent on the same medium. The occasion was, with high probability, one of the lucrative barnstorming tours at which Ruth supplemented his sizable income. According to the consignor, the original recipient was a former Marquette University student who obtained the souvenir directly from Ruth and Walsh at Milwaukee's Pfister Hotel sometime between 1931 and 1934.

Accompanying is a full photo LOA from JSA. This item has a reserve (estimated value: $9000-$12,000).

 
 
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