Lou Gehrig memorabilia lights up Heritage New York sale
A treasure trove of important Lou Gehrig memorabilia is set to cross the block at Heritage this month, dating from two of the most significant years of his career.
Gehrig's 1934 season with the Yankees has been described as "one of the most spectacular in the history of our national pastime". He hit forty-nine home runs and 166 runs batted in, recording a batting average of .363 and a fielding average of .994 from first base, as he became only the 10th player in baseball history to earn the American League Triple Crown award.
Remarkably, the Baseball Writers' Association of America chose to award the season's MVP Award to Detroit Tigers catcher Mickey Cochrane, but The Sporting News saw fit to present Gehrig with its own Most valuable Player Award following the 135 All-Star Game in Cleveland.
That trophy is considered the most significant Lou Gehrig trophy remaining in private hands, with all others on display at the Baseball Hall of Fame, and it's now expected to sell for upwards of $400,000.
Also dating from that historic 1934 season is a copy of Gehrig's contract with the Yankees. Having agreed in 1933 to stay with the team for two further seasons, Gehrig signed individual playing contracts for each additional year. It's believed this particular document relating to the Triple Crown year, bearing the signature "Henry Louis Gehrig" was Gehrig's personal copy, and having been graded PSA/DNA Mint 9 it's now estimated at $200,000+.
Two years later Gehrig was finally awarded the Baseball Writers' Association of America MVP trophy, as he captained the Yankees to victory in the World Series over their bitter local rivals the New York Giants. The Heritage sale will also offer a rare treasure from this season in the shape of Gehrig's game-worn Yankee pinstripe pants. Having been photo-matched to the World Series, this rare uniform item comes with an estimate of $50,000+.
Further notable Lou Gehrig lots will include a 1927 'Murderer's Row' Yankees team-signed baseball, estimated at $80,000+, and a 1934 Goudey Lou Gehrig #3 baseball card graded SGC 98 Gem 10, valued at $150,000+.
The Heritage Auctions Platinum Sports Auction takes place at the Fletcher-Sinclair Mansion in New York on February 20.
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