SCP Auctions April 2011 Internet Auction
This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on:
A fleet-footed slap hitter who perennially topped the .300-mark, Patsy Donovan entered the Deadball Era having already established himself as one of the game's most consistent stars. After his days as a regular player wound down, Donovan went on to leave an indelible mark on the new century as a much-traveled manager and longtime scout. One sportswriter called him an "excellent judge of the ball player in the raw." Indeed, Donovan's greatest accomplishment may have come in 1914 when he convinced the Boston Red Sox to sign a talented young left-hander named George Ruth.
Donovan’s managerial career began after he was dealt to the Cardinals in 1900. He was their player-manager in 1901-03. In 1906-08 he managed the Dodgers, still appearing as a player in eight contests in '06 and '07. His last years at the helm came with the 1910-11 Boston Red Sox. Though Donovan was never on a pennant winner, his best managerial effort was the 1910 Red Sox' 81 wins, good for fourth place.
This Red Sox road jersey was worn by Donovan as manager of the 1910 Boston American League club that featured Tris Speaker, Joe Wood, Harry Hooper and Eddie Cicotte among others. This astonishingly rare artifact has only recently surfaced and is being introduced to hobby here for the first time. It survives in extraordinary original, unaltered condition. Manufactured by Wright & Ditson, the heavy cream-colored wool jersey features the company’s tag stitched horizontally in the collar with Donovan’s last name chain stitched below in pale green thread. The “Boston” red felt lettering across the upper chest is undisturbed and beautifully preserved, as is even the original lace that binds the open collar. The three-quarter length sleeves each have four button holes at the ends to allow for sleeve extensions. Completely original jerseys from this era are unbelievably scarce, much less in the condition featured here. Apart from modest general soiling (most notable inside the collar), and faint color bleeding around the Boston lettering, the jersey has no notable faults. It remains in a state of preservation that is unheard of for it’s age. An accompanying photo of Donovan shows him wearing what appears to us to be this very jersey. For us at SCP Auctions, sports memorabilia doesn’t get any better than this. These are the “finds” that keep us coming to work every day with hope and anticipation.