2022 FALL PREMIER AUCTION

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Hall of Fame outfielder Fred Clarke had a storied 21-year career for the Pittsburgh Pirates, guiding the franchise to its first World Series appearance in 1903 and their first World Championship in 1909 -- and all while serving as player-manager for Honus Wagner and company. Featured here is an extraordinarily scarce Fred Clarke single signed baseball dating to the 1950's.

The milky-white Official National League (Giles) ball has been signed "Fred C. Clarke" in large letters on the west panel extending towards the sweet spot. His black fountain pen autograph projects in 4-5/10 strength, accentuated by the cleanliness of the ball to an oveall 6/10 in eye appeal. The sphere is remarkably well-preserved with a smooth surface and hardly any discoloration other than its natural creaminess from age. On the south panel, the Spalding ball is stamped "O.M. Hobbs", who was President of the Western League (A) which disbanded in 1959. Clarke, a 1945 Hall of Fame inductee, passed away in 1960, meaning he signed this ball near the end of his life.

This is the first Fred Clarke single we have ever had the privilege of listing at auction. To our knowledge, fewer than ten have ever surfaced. Who knows when the next one will be offered publicly. Comes with LOA's from Beckett and JSA.

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