Summer Premier Auction 2019

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How does one land his dream job? For starters, one must know how to ask. When an aspiring 22-year-old broadcaster named Vin Scully typed up this two-page letter to Brooklyn Dodgers President, Branch Rickey, in December 1949, he never imagined in his wildest dreams that he’d spend the next 67 years of his life with the same organization doing what he loves – what he was born to do. Of course, it wasn’t just the polite and humble manner in which Vin applied that impressed Rickey; the ambitious young man came with rave reviews from his mentor and current Dodger play-by-play man, Red Barber, who had recently recruited Scully to cover college football on CBS Radio. As fate would have it, Rickey signed the letter, which apparently turned into the official contract to hire Scully. And the rest, as they say, is history. Within just a few years on the job, Scully would take Barber’s spot in the Dodgers’ booth for good. Presented here is this very contract that started it all.

Fittingly typed in Dodger blue on delicate off-white paper (like cellophane), the document is dated “December 23, 1949” at the top of each page and is signed on page two by Scully and Rickey in 7-8/10 black ink. Each baseball immortal has initialed the first page for good measure as well. As only Scully can so eloquently put it, the first clause asks for a modest $100 per week and pledges that “if my services prove unsatisfactory…you have the right to terminate the contract upon two weeks written notice at any time during the year 1950.” Vin then optimistically requests small increment raises in ’51 and ’52 should things go well, which inevitably they do.

In the grand history of the proud Dodgers franchise, we can safely call this the second most important contract to own (the first being Rickey’s agreement with Jackie Robinson to break the color barrier, of course). In the spectrum of broadcasters, team executives or non-players, however, nothing comes to mind that tops it. With regards to condition, there are two light smudge marks of the typed ink on the front and some faded words within the body. The fragile 8.5” by 11” pages come without any tears or holes, only some ruffled edges and wrinkle creases. Includes full LOA from PSA/DNA.

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