​​Major League History

Bart Giamatti, Mario Cuomo & Bill White Signed Baseball

This Official American League A. Bartlett Giamatti, president model baseball bears a large, Bart Giamatti autograph on the sweet spot.  The ball is also signed on the north panel by former NL president Bill White and on the west panel by former New York City governor Mario Cuomo.  It serves as a Giamatti single-signed baseball when displayed with the sweet-spot forward.

These three men played important roles in the history of baseball and American politics.  After serving as the president of Yale University from 1978 to 1986, A. Bartlett Giamatti was unanimously elected to the position of Major League Baseball commissioner.  He was enormously popular until his sudden death in September of 1989 from a heart attack.  His 5 month tenure as baseball commissioner is the shortest in baseball history.  During his short time in office, Giamatti banned Pete Rose from baseball.  Because of his relatively early death at the age of 51, Giamatti's authentic autograph is somewhat scarce.

Mario Cuomo's first love was baseball but a terrible beaning during a minor league game in 1952 which left him blind in one-eye for a week ended his short career.  Cuomo turned to politics which ultimately landed him the job as New York's governor in 1982, a position he held through 1994.  Cuomo died of natural causes on January 1, 2015.

Bill White was an MLB first baseman for the Giants, Cardinals and Phillies from 1956-1969.  He hit over 200 home runs during his career.  During the 70's and 80's he was the play-by-play man and color analyst for the NY Yankees.  He may be most remembered as a baseball executive.  In 1989, White replaced Giamatti as the president of the National League, a position he held until his retirement in 1994.  White's name is on all Rawlings ONL baseballs issued from 1989-1994.

Opportunities to purchase Giamatti signed baseballs don't arise often.  Don't miss this chance - $250

“[Baseball] breaks your heart. It is designed to break your heart. The game begins in the spring, when everything else begins again, and it blossoms in the summer, filling the afternoons and evenings, and then as soon as the chill rains come, it stops and leaves you to face the fall all alone. You count on it, rely on it to buffer the passage of time, to keep the memory of sunshine and high skies alive, and then just when the days are all twilight, when you need it most, it stops.”
― A. Bartlett Giamatti

1992 Tour of Japan All-Stars

American baseball teams have been touring Japan since the early 20th century.  In 1908 a team comprised mostly of Pacific Coast League players named the Reach All-Americans, played 17 games in Japan then continued their tour to other Asian countries.  Perhaps the most famous tour of Japan took place in 1934 when a team of All-Stars including Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig visited. After World War II, Lefty O'Doul helped to re-establish professional baseball in Japan leading a team of San Francisco Seals in 1949.

In 1986, Major League Baseball began sending a team of All-Stars to play teams from Japan's Nippon Professional Baseball.  The series was played every even numbered year through 2004 (except the baseball strike year of 1994) when it gave way to the World Baseball Classic.  Play began again in 2014 between MLB All-Stars and the Japanese National team, a series most notable for Japan's no-hit pitching performance against the MLB All-Stars in game 3.

​This ball is signed by 21 members of the 1992 MLB All-Star team.  The 92' series was won by the MLB team 6-1-1.  Cecil Fielder hit .440 and Mark Grace was named series MVP after hitting 3 home runs.  

The Mizuno model baseball is the same type as was used in the games (most other years used a Rawlings brand ball).  Comes with a full letter of authenticity from James Spence Authentication (#Y32224).  Price - SOLD.

1943 Philadelphia Athletics Team Signed Baseball

American League president William Harridge once said, "To me, the name of Connie Mack always has been synonymous with baseball, standing for everything that is best for the game he loved."  This rare baseball serves as a wonderful keepsake from the Mack era.

Connie Mack managed the Athletics for 50 years, racking up more wins than any manager in history.  As Mr. Harridge said, Connie Mack is synonymous with baseball.  Any authentic memorabilia from any Mack team is very sought after by collectors.  And while the Connie Mack signature on this ball is most likely a clubhouse variety (signed by a clubhouse attendant on behalf of Mack), all of the other player signatures are authentic.

Because this ball was produced and signed during World War II, it will also appeal to collectors of war memorabilia.  When the question was posed to President Franklin D. Roosevelt whether baseball should continue on when so many of our young people were overseas fighting for our country, Roosevelt issued his famous Green Light Letter.  In his letter to baseball commissioner Judge Kennesaw Landis, Roosevelt stated, "I honestly feel that it would be best for the country to keep baseball going.  There will be fewer people unemployed and everybody will work longer hours and harder than ever before.  And that means that they ought to have a chance for recreation and for taking their minds off their work even more than before."  Because of his decree, baseball, including the players who signed this ball, continued on.

Finally, the story of this baseball itself is very interesting.  One of the lesser known impacts of the war on baseball had to do with the ball itself.  Rubber, an essential ingredient in the core of a baseball, was in high demand and its use was strictly limited to military purposes.  For this reason, baseball was forced to search for a substitute that could be used to encapsulate the cork center of the ball.  Their solution was a substance called "balata" which was imported from South America. The balata ball looks and feels like a normal baseball but its energy when struck by a bat is much different.  The balata ball was deader than the deadest deadball.  One month into the 1943 season, only two home runs had been hit by the entire American League.  By the end of April, the league was hitting just .223 with a dismal .270 slugging percentage.  The Athletics home run leader for the season was Bobby Estalella.  He hit 11, the remainder of the starting lineup hit only 6 more.

This Official American League William Harridge Reach model baseball is a "balata" ball and was produced during the war from 1943-1945.  The ball can be dated to the balata ball era by the style of Reach logo on the south panel.  From 1943-1945, Reach added a third star below William harridge's facsimile signature and the words "PAT.RE.1720" and "MARCA REGISTRADA" beneath "THE CUSHIONED CORK CENTER".

From a key figure in baseball history, during an important time in world history, comes this unique piece of equipment which momentarily altered the game itself.  This baseball is the perfect conversation piece to discuss with others who share a love for the history of the game.

Identifiable signature on the ball include:  Jimmie Ripple, Don Heffner, Irv Hall, Charlie Bowles, Jim Mains, Bob Swift, Russ Christopher, Jo-Jo White, Eddie Mayo, Jesse Flores, Lumin Harris, Pete Suder, Dick Siebert, Roger Wolff, Carl Scheib, Johnny Welaj, Frankie Skaff, Hal Wagner, Lou Ciola and Connie Mack (clubhouse).  Price - $225.

1980 Boston Red Sox Team Signed From John Tudor's Collection

Take advantage of this opportunity to own an amazing 1980 Boston Red Sox team signed baseball from the personal collection of former Major League pitcher, John Tudor.  Not often do authentic autographs come on the market from the personal collections of professional ball players, especially those of Tudor's caliber. 

John Tudor dominated the 1985 season posting a record of 21-8 and also went on to win 2 games in the 85' World Series.  He pitched in 6 post season series and was a member of the 1988 World Champion Dodgers team.  From his first full season in the majors, this baseball is signed by Tudor along with 31 of his teammates including 5 hall of famers in Tony Perez, Jim Rice, Dennis Eckersley, Carlton Fisk and Carl Yastrzemski.  Yaz signed in bold blue across the Lee MacPhail presidential logo.  The ball comes with the pictured certificate signed by John Tudor verifying his prior ownership.  The authentic signatures include:  Bill Campbell, Bob Ojeda, Tony Perez, John Tudor, Jim Rice, Bruce Hurst, Fred Lynn, Johnny Podres, Eddie Yost, Dennis Eckersley, Johnny Pesky, Dwight Evans, Carlton Fisk, Rich Burleson, Carl Yastrzemski and many others. 

The ball exhibits light toning, light logos, and strong signatures throughout.  I also have similar 1982 and 1983 Red Sox team balls from Tudor's collection at the same price - $275.

Featured Baseballs

1978 New York Yankees World Series Champions

A beautiful mint Rawlings Official American League (MacPhail) baseball loaded with 25 signatures.  The Reggie, Munson and Billy Martin signatures are clubhouse type but the rest including Yogi Berra, Guidry, Pinella, Dent, Gossage, Lyle, Chambliss and many others are all authentic.  Solid bold blue ink signatures throughout - $165

All Autographed Baseballs come with a protective plastic cube.  For additional pictures or information, email MajorLeagueHistory@gmail.com.  Click on the images for larger pictures.

Stolen Base Kings - Henderson, Brock, Coleman & Wills

Rickey Henderson, Lou Brock, Vince Coleman and Maury Wills graded NM/MT PSA #81988321.  On an 80's ONL Rawlings baseball.  Four of the greatest base stealers of all-time - $265

The Official Charles O. Finley Baseball Signed by Eleven 500 Home Run Club Members

In 1973 Major League Baseball conducted a now famous experiment, a game played with orange baseballs.  Charley Finley, never known as a baseball traditionalist, lobbied for the use of orange baseballs.  According to Finley, changing the color of the balls to a bright orange made them stand out better for hitters which in turn would lead to more offense and a more enjoyable game for fans.  After his A's won the World Series in 1972, Charley had enough influence amongst baseball executives to convince commissioner Bowie Kuhn to allow the experiment.

On March 29, 1973, the A's and Indians squared off in an exhibition game using the orange balls.  While sixteen runs were scored in the game (Indians 11, A's 5), the balls did not catch on.  Some batters complained that they were unable to pick up the spin of the balls and pitchers complained that they were too slippery.

Offered here is the authentic Official Charles O. Finley baseball.  You may never find a finer one.  This rare baseball is autographed by 11 members of the elusive 500 home run club.  As of 1987, only 14 players (now 27) had ever hit 500 or more home runs.  This ball bears the signatures of 11 of the original 14 including Ted Williams, Mickey Mantle, Eddie Mathews, Reggie Jackson, Frank Robinson, Willie Mays, Harmon Killebrew, Mike Schmidt, Hank Aaron, Ernie Banks and Willie McCovey.  The ball comes with a full letter of authenticity from James Spence Authentication (#Y38487).  If another Finley baseball with all of these signatures exists, I have never seen it.  Don't miss this opportunity to add this museum worthy piece to your personal collection.  Price - $750

1956-57 Puerto Rico Winter League Champion Mayaguez Indians Team Signed Baseball - 

No team in Puerto Rican professional baseball (Liga Profesional de Baseball de Puerto Rico) has enjoyed more success than the Mayaguez Indians (Indios de Mayaguez).  The team has produced 17 league champions including the 1956-57 team.  Mickey Owen's club won four of five games to defeat Santurce, earning a trip to Havana, Cuba for the Caribbean Series.  This extremely rare baseball is signed by many key members of that team including:  Bob Smith (Pittsburgh Pirates), Herb Plews (Washigton Senators), Pete Wojey (Detroit Tigers), Bill Harrell (Cleveland Indians), Bob Speake (Chicago Cubs), Duke Maas (Detroit Tigers), Ken Aspromonte (Boston Red Sox), and player / manager Mickey Owen (4 time All-Star with the Brooklyn Dodgers).  The ball itself, a Wilson A1010/W150CC, Liga Profesional de Baseball de Puerto Rico, is a very rare find.  A museum worthy piece representing the rich history of Puerto Rican baseball.  - $500

2006 All-Star Futures Team Signed Baseball

Signed by 17 members of the 2006 All-Star Futures team: West Panel) Ryan Braun, Billy Butler, Nick Adenhart, Joe Koshansky;  East) Neil Walker, Homer Bailey, Alex Gordon, Gio Gonzalez;  North) Travis Buck, Stephen Drew, Kurt Suzuki, Jason Hirsh;  South) Howie Kendrick, Cameron Maybin, Troy Tulowitzki;  and manager Gary Carter on the sweet spot.

The US team managed by Gary Carter banged out 11 hits including a home run by game MVP Billy Bulter en route to an 8-5 victory over the World Team.

Many Rookie autographs along with deceased Hall of Famer, Gary Carter adorn this terrific MLB authentic baseball.  - $150

Pete Rose Signed Baseball Attributed to Managerial win #350

This Bart Giamatti Official NL baseball is attributed to Pete Rose's 350th victory as a manager and is marked 'Win #350' on the North panel.  The model of baseball is the same as was used in NL games in 1988, the year Rose won his 350th game as a manager.  1989 was Rose's final season managing (412 wins - 373 losses).  He was banned from baseball by Giamatti on August 24th.  Giamatti would die from a heart attack only 2 weeks later.  While some of the provenance of this historic baseball is lost, it does originate from a prominant collection of Rose and Reds memorabilia.  The Pete Rose autograph has been deemed authentic by JSA - $160

"An Evening with the Heros" - Bill Mazeroski Collection

On August 7, 1994, Pittsburgh Pirates Hall of Fame second baseman Bill Mazeroski was an honored guest at a screening of Ken Burn's now famous baseball documentary titled simply Baseball.  The event, held in Boston, was called "An Evening with the Heroes of Baseball".  It was hosted by famous broadcaster and avid baseball fan, Bob Costas.  This amazing baseball was signed for Maz by many of the attendees at the event that night and it remained in his personal collection until it was sold at auction in 2015.  A letter of provenance signed by Bill Mazeroski verifies his prior ownership.  

Now you can own Bill Mazeroski's personal baseball loaded with authentic signatures of 13 of baseball's all-time best.  The signatures and their placement on this Official American League, Bobby Brown, Rawlings model baseball (the model ball used in all AL games in 1993-1994) are:  West Panel: 1.  Johnny Pesky (d. 2012)  2.  Gene Benson (d. 1999)  3.  Dom Dimaggio (d. 2009)  East Panel: 1.  Bobby Thompson (d. 2011)  2.  Ralph Branca  3.  Earl Weaver (HOF, d. 2013)  4.  Mickey Lolich  North Panel:  1.  Mark Fidrych (d. 2009)  2.  Jim Lonborg  South Panel:  1.  Jim Rice (HOF) 2. Curt Flood (d. 1997)  3.  Bill Mazeroski (HOF)  Sweet Spot:1.  Buck O'Neil (HOF, d. 2006).
Price - $190

1979 A's Team Signed with Early Henderson Autograph

This baseball was signed for a Cleveland Indians employee during the A's only road trip to Cleveland after Henderson joined the team.  On August 23, 1979, Henderson led off the series going 2 for 5 with 3 stolen bases, the 18th, 19th, and 20th of his career.  This Indians logo ball is signed by 20 A's including the beautiful very early-in-career Henderson autograph - $525.

1963 Boston Red Sox Team (23) Signed

J. Cronin Official AL Reach baseball.  This ball comes from the Estate of Johnny Pesky.  Signed by Pesky and 22 of his teammates including Yaz, Dick Williams, Frank Malone, Harry Dorish, Wilbur Wood and others.  Nice bold signatures throughout on a near mint baseball - $285.

1978-79 Magallanes of Venezula - Caribbean World Series Champions

This Rawlings Liga Venezolana De Beisbol Profesional (Venezuelan League of Professional Baseball) is signed by 25 members of the 1978-79 Navegantes de Magallanes (Magellan Navigators).  This popular team from the Venezuelan Professional Baseball League won the 1979 Carribean World Series.  The mint condition baseball is extremely well preserved with beautiful bold signatures done in green ink throughout.  The authentic signatures include:  Miguel Barreto, Mitchell Page, Miguel Nava, Manuel Sarmiento, Carlos Hernandez, Fred Breining, Roger Polanco, Felix Rodriguez, Oswaldo Olivares, Benny Wiltbank, Rene Nieto, Denny Sommers, Harry Dorish, Alexis Ramirez player manager Willie Horton and many others.

The Navegantes de Magallanes of Venezuela clinched the 79' Caribbean Series with a 5-1 record. Guided by manager/DH Willie Horton (.261 BA, .414 OBP) and Series Most Valuable Player Mitchell Page (.417 BA, two home runs, 11 RBI, six runs, .875 SLG), the Venezuelan club took the top spot despite a 1–0 defeat to Dominican Republic in Game 1. Pitcher Manny Sarmiento went 2-0 with a 2.16 ERA in 8 ⅓ of work and Ben Wilbank won his only start in 8.0 scoreless innings. 

This rare baseball is in amazing condition and it is an important piece of Venezuelan baseball history.  The Magallanes, have not won a Caribbean Series since.  Add this historic ball to your collection - $250

From the Personal Collection of Bill Mazeroski - Old Timers Game

From a mid to late 80s Old Timers game, this OAL (Brown) baseball comes from Maz's personal collection.  Includes a letter of provenance.  Nineteen signatures including: Curt Flood, Ralph Houk, Lou Boudreau, Joe Torre, Bill Mazeroski, Roger "Doc" Cramer, Rick Wise, Art Ditmar, Don Money, Jim Gentile, Chuck Schilling, Jim Beattie, Bill Lee, Pumpsie Green, Dick Dietz, Jim Lonborg and others adorn a near mint ball - $165

1988 Equitable Old Timers Game Cleveland Stadium

This Rawlings Official AL (Brown) baseball is signed by 23 of the participants of an old-timers game which took place at Cleveland Stadium on June 11, 1988.  Some of the bigger names include Larry Doby, Bob Feller, Bob Lemon, Bobby Doerr, Al Kaline, Orlando Cepeda, Joe Torre, Herb Score, Zoilo Versalles, Jim Bouton, Al Dark, Mudcat Grant, and others.  Nice clear signatures throughout on a near mint ball - $300

1961 Los Angeles Angels Inaugural Team (21) Signed

LA Angels Inaugural Season team signed J. Cronin Offical AL Reach baseball.  Signed by 21 of the Angels in their first year of existence.  Signatures include Fowler, Wagner, McBride and others.  Rigney and Averill are apparent clubhouse signatures.  Blue ink signature average 6/10 in strength.  Ball displays some wear and discoloration - $165

2005-06 Johnny Cueto Pre-Rookie Sarasota Reds

From his minor league playing days with the single A Sarasota Reds of the Florida State League, this minor league baseball is authenticated by PSA and given their special designation as a "RookieBall" #R02791.  Inscribed with number '45' which was his uniform number with Sarasota - $100.

Rickey Henderson Early Career Autograph From Dick Williams' Estate

The ball is inscribed 'To Rick', who is Dick Williams' son, and 'Best Wishes Always Rickey Henderson'.  It was first put on the market at a 2015 Dick Williams estate auction.  The ball is an Official National League (Feeney) one dot, manufactured in 1981 which is about the time this ball would have been signed.  It is heavily toned.  The autograph is authenticated by JSA #P36182 - $150

1998 Maryland Fall League Team Signed Bowie Nationals & Frederick Regiment

In 1998, MLB created the Maryland Fall Baseball League to supplement the Arizona Fall League.  A lack of funding and a desire for warmer weather led to the league's end after only one season which ran from 9/22/98 to 11/1/98.  Considering that the league was only in existence for little more than one month, these one-year-type baseballs are extremely difficult to find as you would imagine.

These 2 used balls are team signed, one by the Bowie Nationals, the other by the league champion Frederick Regiment - $150 each, $250 for the pair.

2007 Clayton Kershaw Pre-Rookie Great Lakes Looons

A game used Official Midwest Minor League baseball signed by Clayton Kershaw while playing for the Dodgers' single A team, the Great Lakes Loons.  Includes a letter of provenance from the original owner who had the ball signed.  It is authenticated by PSA/DNA # W77486.  Kershaw inscribed #26, the number he wore for the Loons.  A very early autograph from the eras most dominant pitcher - $450.

1935-1936 Charlie Gehringer 'Playing Days' Autographed Reach Mickey Cochrane Model Baseball

Charlie Gehringer was given the nickname "The Mechanical Man" by members of the Washington Senators.  As Doc Cramer explained, "All you do is wind him up on opening day and he runs on all season". Once asked why he signed his name “Chas” instead of “Charlie,” the Michigan native replied: “Why use seven letters when four will do?”

This Reach Mickey Cochrane Amateur Ball is signed Chas. Gehringer on the sweet spot. Executed in steel tip fountain pen, this early autograph would have been done during the Tigers' glory days and near Gehringer's MVP season of 1935 based on the model of baseball.  It comes with a full photo LOA form JSA.  The attractive signature on an eye appealing vintage baseball makes for a high-end collectible - SOLD.

1931 Pacific Coast League Champion San Francisco Seals Team Signed Baseball

The 1931 San Francisco Seals swept the Hollywood Stars 4-0 to claim the 1931 Pacific Coast League Championship.  This rare PCL (Harry Williams) baseball is signed by 9 members of the team including manager Nick Williams, Jim Keesey, Ken Douglas, Jim Zinn, Sam (Gibson?), and four others.  The ball maintains well preserved bold logos including Wilson's early "Pride Mark" logo on the north panel.  A nice early piece of PCL memorabilia. - SOLD

1980 American League All-Star Team

A Rawlings official All-Star ball signed by 25 AL All-Star team members.  Loaded with Hall of Famers and potential future HOFers including Paul Molitor, Frank Robinson, Rickey Henderson, Alan Trammell, Fred Lynn, Tommy John, George Brett, Al Kaline, Carlton Fisk and manager Earl Weaver plus others.  Varying strengths of signatures with most of the big names being the finest on the ball.  Dual authenticated by GAI and PSA/DNA # C84275 and affixed with their stickers - $275

1964 Chunichi Dragons Nippon Japanese League Team Signed Baseball

How many team signed baseballs have you seen from Japan?  Chances are, none or not many.  Here is a great example of one from the 1964 Chunichi Dragons of the Nippon Professional Baseball League.  This rare baseball originates from the personal collection of former major league player and manager Ken Aspromonte.  Aspromonte was a player / coach for the 64' Chunichi Dragons.  He has signed the ball along with American Jim Marshall and ten of their Japanese teammates.  Jim Marshal hit 31 home runs in 64', 3rd best in the Nippon League.  Shinichi Eto, a member of the Japanese baseball Hall of Fame, also played on this team.  Eto won the league batting title with a .323 average.  Certainly a rare find and a very interesting addition to any baseball memorabilia collection.  - $250

2003 World Series Champion Florida Marlins From Jeff Torborg's Personal Collection

Thirty-eight games into the 2003 season, Jeff Torborg was fired as manager of the Florida Marlins.  As disappointing as this must have been, even more painful is that he could only watch as his team rebounded under new manager Jack McKeon to win the World Series in 6 games over the New York Yankees.

The Marlins' offense was led by 31 home runs from Derek Lee, 105 RBI from Mike Lowell and 65 stolen bases from Juan Pierre, all of whom signed this ball.

This baseball comes from the personal collection of Jeff Torborg and is accompanied by a letter of provenance signed by him.  The near mint Official MLB ball bears 19 signatures from the 03' champion team including:  Juan Pierre, Brian Banks, Tim Spooneybarger, Mike Mordecai, Mike Lowell, Michael Tejera, Andy Fox, Bill Robinson, Vladimir Nunez, Blaine Neal, Braden Looper, Carl Pavano, Todd Hollandsworth, Brad Arnsberg, Perri Hill, Jeff Cox, Mike Redmond, Derek Lee and Jeff Torborg.  Price - $125

1990 Old Timers All-Star Game Signed (26) Including 17 Hall of Famer Autographs

This stunning Rawlings Official All-Star Game baseball was signed during the Fifth and final annual Equitable Insurance Old-Timers All-Star Game at Wrigley Field on July 9th, 1990.  The event took place one day prior to the MLB All-Star Game and was intended to raise money for former MLB players who were in need of assistance.

Forty living baseball legends attended and many of those have signed this beautiful near mint baseball including:  Bobby Doerr, Bob Gibson, Robin Roberts, Joe Rudi, Johnny Mize, Paul Blair, Al Barlick, Gaylord Perry, Eddie Mathews, Earl Battey, Boug Powell, Bob Feller (twice), Billy Williams, Dick Williams, Warren Spahn, Bobby Bonds, Al Oliver, Ernie Banks, Monte Irvin, Fergie Jenkins, Bert Campaneris, Dennis Leonard, Enos Slaughter, and Lou Brock.  That's a total of 17 Hall of Fame signatures on this baseball !!  Not to mention the other 9 all stars and future potential Hall of Famers who signed.

An insightful story written by Larry Colton, a writer and former player who attended the game, can be found here.  Sadly many of these players have since passed away Doerr (2017), Roberts (2010), Mize (1993), Blair (2013), Al Barlick (1995), Mathews (2001), Battey (2003), Feller (2010), D. Williams (2011), Spahn (2003), Banks (2015), Irvin (2016) Slaughter (2002) making it impossible to assemble such an amazing group together ever again - $675.

Autographed Baseballs

1957-58 Licoreros De Pampero Team

A Wilson, Venezuelan Professional Baseball Association, Franklin Whaite, president ball signed by 11 members of the 1957-58 Licoreros de Pampero (distillers of Pampero) winter league team including Connie Grob, Jim Marshall, Domingo Carrasquel, Ken Aspromonte and others.  A very rare model baseball.  From the personal collection of Ken Aspromonte - $325