Spring Premier Auction 2020

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This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on 5/2/2020

Presented here is an extraordinary 1949 Hollywood Stars home flannel worn by infielder Gene Handley during the iconic club’s third and final PCL Championship season. From the 1930s to the mid-50s the Pacific Coast League (AAA) was widely regarded as the “third” major league (after the AL and NL), providing a high level of play garnished by the blaze of Hollywood celebrities in the stands when the Stars or Angels hosted their games at Wrigley Field in South L.A. Hailing from such a glorious “Twinks” season, worn and signed by one of its best players, this Stars gamer is one of the finer examples in the hobby.

Handley was a PCL mainstay for most of his 19-year playing career. He starred for the Stars from 1948-53 after a brief two-year stint in the big leagues with the Philadelphia Athletics (1946-47) under the legendary Connie Mack. After playing third and short in ’48, he settled in at second base the following season and batted .294 to help lead Fred Haney’s boys to a 109-78 record – yes, they played 187 games – and the 1949 PCL title. Handley had over 2,000 base knocks in his minor league career with a lifetime .292 average. The Dodgers’ cross-country move from Brooklyn in 1957 essentially kicked the Hollywood Stars out of Tinseltown, leading to the team’s sale and move to Utah where they would become the much less-heralded Salt Lake City Bees.

The creamy white, heavy wool garment has the Stars' stylish logo sewn on the left chest in red-on-blue felt. Handley’s player number “4” appears on the back in the same format, its blue border showing signs of aging and separation. He has neatly autographed the right chest with “Hollywood ‘Stars’ Pacific Coast League Champs 1949” inscribed in 9/10 bold black marker. There is red trim around the collar running down each side of the zipper front. The sleeves have red piping near the ends and there are six intended holes (as tailored) under each arm to facilitate ventilation. Wilson size “44” manufacturer’s tagging is found inside the rear collar, albeit in rough shape from such excessive use. “Gene Handley 1949” is lightly penned at the edge of the front shirttail. The all-original jersey exhibits a ton of wear throughout with heavy pilling, a couple isolated areas of fraying (back number and back collar), and some scattered light soiling stains including a curved spot on the left chest. Amazingly, with this level of usage from such an early gamer, there is no tearing or moth damage whatsoever. The shirt was originally sourced from the esteemed Dick Dobbins Collection (the “mother” of all PCL collections) over two decades ago. Autograph pre-certified by Beckett.

Bidding
Current Bidding
Minimum Bid: $750
Final prices include buyers premium.: $1,451
Number Bids: 5
Auction closed on Saturday, May 2, 2020.
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