Spring Premier Auction 2013
This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on 4/28/2013
Imagine owning a jersey worn by a Hall of Famer and perhaps the most prominent player not in the Hall of Fame this side of Pete Rose or Joe Jackson. Rollie Fingers was unceremoniously issued this Kansas City Athletics road jersey in spring training of 1965, but it wasn’t until a few years later that he realized it had been worn by Roger Maris in 1959 in his third year as a pro and second as a member of the Athletics. Today Fingers recalls that he may have worn the jersey about a dozen times during his first spring training with the Athletics at the Daytona Beach Florida facility that the team shared with the Pirates. His inclination to hold onto it was due solely to the fact that it was his first major-league uniform with little awareness of the name “Maris” stitched in the collar. Several years later the name Maris took on a whole new meaning, and in the 1990’s Rollie contacted Roger Maris’ sons. He met them at Mickey Mantle’s Restaurant in New York City across from Central Park and proudly showed them their father’s jersey.
The Size 44 Rawlings Hall of Fame tagged road flannel is in remarkable condition, with “Maris” chain stitched in the collar and “Set 1 1959” flag tag on the interior adjacent to the was tag. The shirts has the embroidered A’s Elephant logo on the left sleeve and Maris’ No. 3 on the back. The jersey remains completely original and unaltered save for two replaced buttons and one that is absent. Truly an important historical artifact, the first major league jersey worn by one of the greatest relief pitchers in baseball history and also worn by the great slugger Roger Maris in his final year in Kansas City before a fateful trade would send him to the Bronx and launch his legendary partnership with Mickey Mantle. The lot includes two small color photographs and a newspaper clipping showing an 18-year-old Rollie Fingers in the A’s jersey in spring training in Florida.
Comes with a LOA from Rollie Fingers.