Own a Red Sox World Series Trophy

1223064186It’s a bit early for holiday shopping, but for that real Red Sox fan on your list, the opportunity of a lifetime is fast approaching. Sure you could buy a Dice-K t-shirt, Pedroia bobblehead or plush Wally the Green Monster in full home regalia. But those are a dime a dozen.

Instead imagine owning a unique piece of the Red Sox legacy (and one that your dog probably won’t chew, Papelbon)—the Red Sox World Series trophy from 1912, Fenway Park’s inaugural season.

That’s right, the 1912 title trophy—a classic silver number inscribed with the names of team members such as Hall-of-Famers Tris Speaker and “Smokey” Joe Wood. The trophy itself is an oddity because Major League Baseball didn’t begin awarding them until the 1960s. John Fitzgerald, Boston’s mayor at the time, arranged to have the trophy manufactured and presented to his hometown champions.

“How can I get my hands on it?” I can hear you ask. “And how much will it cost?”

Glad you asked. The trophy will be auctioned off, Oct. 18 at New York’s Madison Square Garden, with an assortment of baseball memorabilia by Guernsey’s, the same folks who brought you Mark McGwire’s 70th home run ball. Nothing is expected to go for the $3 million McGwire’s ball commanded, but the trophy should fetch at least six figures, if not seven, according to Arlan Ettinger, the president of the auction house.

“[The McGwire ball] was a big deal, to be sure, at the time,” Ettinger says. “That ball today is worth the price of a good ham and cheese sandwich and not too much more, I suspect. This trophy, I think, will endure as long as there is baseball. It has to be viewed as one of the most significant baseball artifacts ever.”

Another object on the block is a love letter from a Yankees rookie named Mickey Mantle to his fiancée, Merlyn Johnson in 1951. In it, Mantle repeatedly proclaims his love for the girl from Picher, Oklahoma. Warning:

“[Y]ou can tell the people around there that I don’t even see these girls up here [in New York] for dreaming about you,” wrote the 19-year-old ballplayer. Apparently to help vivify those dreams, Mantle also requests, “the pictures of you in your shorts and any more that you have.”

That kind of puts the Mick’s actions in Ball Four in a whole new light, huh?

The occasion for the auction is the closing of Yankee Stadium. As the Yanks aptly demonstrated this year, you can’t buy a championship, but you can buy a piece of someone else’s.

—CONOR O’TOOLE

Guernsey’s will auction off the 1912 World Series trophy on Oct. 18 at Madison Square Garden. Go to guernseys.com for more details.

  • http://www.bostonknucklehead.com Boston Knucklehead

    That is some piece of history. I hope it falls into good hands. Imagine what could happen if it fell into a Yankees fans hands?

  • http://ct.sabr.org/index.htm Joe Williams

    FYI

    Smoky Joe Wood is not a Hall of Famer in Cooperstown and there is no “e” in Smoky.