Summer Premier Auction 2020

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

Presented here is a Frank "Home Run" Baker full-size decal bat manufactured by J.F. Hillerich & Son (a.k.a. Louisville Slugger) with "Trademark Reg. U.S. PAT OFF" present below the center brand. This version of the center brand with "Co." added to "J.F Hillerich & Son" dates to the 1911-16 period per the Louisville, KY company's records. The un-cracked ash bat measures 34" and weighs 36.5 ounces, matching available known records for Baker's 34" and 34.5" length preferences as well as his 47, 40, 39 and 36-37 oz. weight specifications. We cannot confirm use by Baker, but the barrel exhibits signs of usage resembling cleat marks plus wear and tear from storage and aging. It is likely a presentation bat as almost all full-size decal bats were for players, produced for Baker per his H&B contract and then decorated with a colorful, artistic pictographic image of him and his name on the barrel.

Early 1900's decal bats remain a novelty in the hobby, with the smaller souvenir versions much more common. Full-size examples like this are especially desireable among collectors and can demand steep prices. The mystique surrounding their actual use in games will always be up in the air until a photo of a bonified MLB player using the bat in action surfaces. What makes this one stand out is the well-preserved portrait image of Baker on the barrel. On almost every full-size example, the barrel decals have faded off and are no longer visible. This decal refers to Frank as "Good-Night Baker" instead of "Home Run Baker." He earned the latter nickname after his home run hitting heroics for Philadelphia in the 1911 World Series, which means this bat was likely produced during the 1911 regular season (after the A's 1910 World Series victory) before Baker's "Good-Night" prefix was replaced with "Home Run. One of the finer Baker examples you will find.

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Current Bidding
Minimum Bid: $500
Final prices include buyers premium.: $2,520
Number Bids: 13
Auction closed on Friday, August 28, 2020.
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