Summer Premier Auction 2019

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This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on 9/28/2019

Just as men like Ty Cobb and Honus Wagner were inventing the modern game of baseball on the field as a player, arbitrators like Bill Klem were doing the same for umpires. From 1905 to 1941, Klem umpired games in the National League and was on the field for a record 108 World Series games. From Christy Mathewson to Joe DiMaggio, Bill Klem was as important to the development of America's Pastime as Daniel Lucius "Doc" Adams when he drafted the game's official rules in 1857.

This historically important letter was penned by Hall of Fame umpire Bill Klem from his room at St. Louis’ West End Hotel on July 5, 1910. Addressed to National League President James Lynch, the one-page letter explains the circumstances surrounding a disputed home run call he made at New York’s Polo Grounds. Klem expresses the need for a painted white line to extend from the chalked foul line on the field and onto the façade of the ballpark. Essentially, Bill Klem invents today’s foul pole in this very letter! Historical significance aside, the calligraphic quality of Klem’s handwriting alone is enough to attract attention to this extraordinary baseball treasure. Written in bold black fountain pen (8-9/10) on illustrated West End Hotel letterhead, this piece is aesthetically beautiful, with just slight edge wear and toning from age. The letter comes with an LOA from PSA/DNA.

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Minimum Bid: $400
Final prices include buyers premium.: $704
Number Bids: 3
Auction closed on Saturday, September 28, 2019.
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