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This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on 12/3/2023

In the 1950’s, few athletes, if any, on the planet were better than Dick Groat. A two-sport star at Duke University, he was the first basketball player in school history to have his number retired. In addition to back-to-back All America selections, Groat was named Helms Foundation Player of the Year in 1950-51 and UPI National Player of the Year in 1951-52 when he set a then-NCAA record with 839 points scored as the team’s point guard. On the diamond, Duke’s star shortstop batted .370 as a senior and led the Blue Devils to their first College World Series in 1952.

When it came time to choose between hardball or the hardcourt, Groat chose both at first. In 1952 he debuted at age 21 with his hometown Pittsburgh Pirates (signed by Branch Rickey) without any minor league reps, batting .284 over 95 games. Drafted that same summer by the NBA’s Fort Wayne Pistons, he played one season of pro hoops before enlisting in the Army. In 1955, he rejoined the Pirates and picked up right where he left off, taking over the starting shortstop position for the next eight seasons.

The stars aligned for Groat and the Pirates in 1960 when he and Roberto Clemente led the Bucs to their first World Series title in 35 years. Groat batted .325 to win the National League batting title and was also awarded the NL MVP to complete the rare trifecta. (In 2018 Mookie Betts became the only other player to accomplish this feat.) Featured here is the striking silver award bat presented to Dick Groat as the 1960 National League batting champion.

The trophy bat is modeled after Groat’s Louisville Slugger 125 professional model bat. It measures 34” long and is made of 55.6 Troy ounces of sterling silver. “BATTING CHAMPION 1960 NATIONAL LEAGUE B.A. .325” is engraved on the barrel in meticulous detail. The bat remains in remarkable condition despite being produced over 60 years ago by Hillerich & Bradsby. We sold Clemente’s 1964 NL Batting Title bat in our last auction, and this one is in even better shape with fewer scratches and hardly any dings on the surface. Includes a letter of provenance from Dick Groat himself.

This lot has a Reserve Price that has not been met.
Current Bidding (Reserve Not Met)
Minimum Bid: $10,000
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Number Bids:13
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