Summer Premier Auction 2020


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This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on 8/28/2020

Early Wynn typified the vanishing breed of scowling, intimidating pitchers of his era. At age 17, he walked into a Senators tryout camp and signed a pro contract. After three starts in 1939, he made the majors to stay in 1941. Armed with a blazing fastball and little else at first, Wynn's distinct personality led him to call the pitching mound his "office." He worked with a grim, fierce appearance, and may be best remembered for saying he would knock down his grandmother if she dug in against him. Acquired by Bill Veeck's Cleveland Indians in 1949, Wynn flourished under the tutelage of pitching coach Mel Harder, logging double-digit win totals in all nine seasons with the Tribe and 20-plus wins in four of those campaigns.

The 1952 Indians had one of the most dominant starting rotations of all-time led by Hall of Famers Bob Feller, Bob Lemon and Wynn, along with three-time All-Star Mike Garcia. The latter three combined for 67 wins during the season, with Wynn victorious 23 times to lead the way as the Indians finished with an impressive 93-61 record. However, it was not enough to dethrone the Yankees who went 95-59 to take the American League pennant yet again. Wynn tied his career-high in wins and finished fifth in MVP voting, two years before leading Cleveland to the best record in baseball (111-43) and the A.L. pennant. He would be awarded the Cy Young in 1959 as a member of the White Sox with whom he earned another trip to the World Series. The man known simply as “Gus” retired with exactly 300 wins over a 24-year period (1939-63) – sandwiched around service in World War II – and was enshrined in Cooperstown in 1972.

Presented here is perhaps the only surviving Early Wynn game worn uniform in existence. We have represented just one Wynn jersey (’58 White Sox) in our long auction history, and from our research there have been just two gamers from his more recognized Indians tenure (1949-57) ever offered publicly. The cream-colored, 1952 home flannel has "Indians" scripted across the chest in red felt letters outlined in navy blue, with Wynn's No. "24" done in the same format on the back. The left sleeve holds the classic Chief Wahoo patch. A white swatch sewn within the collar has “E. Wynn” hand-stitched in black script. Proper Wilson manufacturer’s tagging adorns the left front tail with a size 46 flag tag and washing instructions, following by "1952" chain-stitched below.

The button-down jersey remains all-original with ample wear in the form of light, even soiling as well as heavy pilling and moderate fraying to the fabric. The only condition issues to speak of are two minor tears: one on the front left side and another along the left underarm seam. Otherwise, it remains in outstanding shape. Wynn’s matching pair of ’52 home pants have a similar “E. Wynn” swatch identifier within the rear waistband next to Wilson size 38 tagging. “1952” is chain-stitched within the front button. The zipper-up trousers come all-original with evident soiling around the front waistline and no tears or condition issues whatsoever. Both game-used garments lack the staining and moth holes common among vintage flannels, giving the uniform even further aesthetic appeal.

Jersey expert Dave Grob of SGC has graded the full uniform Excellent/Superior (EX/S), the second highest possible rating on SGC’s unique scale (correlates to a 5.5 out of 6). Includes 22-page SGC authentication booklet with evaluation details.

Current Bidding (Reserve Has Been Met)
Minimum Bid: $3,000
Final prices include buyers premium.: $12,438
Number Bids: 13
Auction closed on Friday, August 28, 2020.
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