Masterpieces and Uncommon Commons LXXV
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Watch the film above on this historic item, narrated by Autograph Authenticator James J. Spence Jr.

“Cross-eyed men are bad luck but spitting in a hat immediately kills the jinx.”
-Christy Mathewson

The quote above proves that even Christy Mathewson – the immortal Christy Mathewson—was as superstitious as any other ball player of his time. It also, most likely, proves Matty spat into a great number of hats or crossed paths with very few cross-eyed men.

Perhaps The Most Significant Find In Our History

At Goodwin & Company, we have been fortunate enough to offer some of the hobby’s greatest treasures, including the Holy Grail of collecting, the incomparable T206 Honus Wagner. After working in this business, with collectors at every level, it’s easy to think you’ve probably seen the best artifacts available in the past. You believe there simply can’t be anything better than what has walked through our door. Then the phone rings, your heart stops, and a new discovery tops everything which has come before. Such is the case with what is the finest autographed ball we have ever offered at auction: A single signed Christy Mathewson Official National League, John K. Tener ball, which looks as though it has been carefully and meticulously stored for the past 102 years. This artifact is indeed Cooperstown worthy.

The History Of The Finest Christy Mathewson Signed Ball Known

In the early 1900s a very affluent, New York gentleman banker and baseball enthusiast held season tickets for all three major league baseball clubs in New York. Given his status, wealth and connections, his seats were among the finest in the house, located directly next to the home dugouts in each stadium, providing access to players, and team personnel. The banker took clients to each of the three parks, but while he enjoyed his time in Brooklyn and Highlander Park, he relished his time with his favorite team, the New York Giants, often attending with friends or family so business would not interfere with fun.

Among the players the banker befriended and admired was the great Christy Mathewson. From 1900-1913, Mathewson was arguably the most dominant pitcher in the National League. His three complete game shutouts in the 1905 World Series elevated him to folk hero status. But Matty, like all athletes could not cheat time. His career eroded from 1914 until early 1916 declined. Finally, after discussing managing with his friend, Giant skipper John McGraw, Mathewson was traded, along with future Hall of Famer Eddie Roush, to Cincinnati in July of 1916. The great pitcher now had his opportunity to share his knowledge and gamesmanship with a team he could make his own.

Upon a return trip to The Polo Grounds while managing the Reds shortly after his trade, the banker approached his former Giant hero and asked for an autograph, offering up a ball and chisel-tipped steel fountain pen. “The Christian Gentleman from Bucknell” acknowledged his old friend’s request, signed the ball, shared a few words, then set out to defeat his former teammates beneath the high summer sky. A piece of baseball history had just been created.

Superior To Any Cobb, Ruth Or Gehrig Ball We Have Ever Sold

Dead Ball Era autographed balls simply don’t survive in the condition presented by this Mathewson ball. Every detail is a study in perfection. Mathewson’s signature exhibits a pristine grace and fluidity, as if you can still see the ink flowing gently from the antique fountain pen’s nib. The ink appears bold, almost fresh, as if never having accepts a single ray of sunlight. Every stitch in the ball retains its original color, the stamping on the ball remains the same as the day it was removed from its original box. Words alone cannot truly describe just how magnificent this ball truly is. Even our friends at James Spence Authentication could not believe their eyes when presented with this ball.

Some artifacts of the game, return us to our childhood splendor, when the game was bigger than life and every player in uniform was a hero. This ball has that type of impact.

For the advanced collector, investor or museum curator, this is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity which rarely comes around once in anyone’s life. For a private showing (no photos please) or to learn more, please contact us.

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Magnificent Christy Mathewson Signed Baseball JSA Authenticated  Perhaps The Finest In the Hobby !

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