The only known surviving program from the clinching game of the first modern era World Series is going on the auction block.
Heritage Auctions will offer the four-page scorecard in its February Platinum Auction where it’s expected to fetch at least $150,000. Fewer than 7,500 fans were on hand that October day at Boston’s Huntington Avenue Grounds to watch the contest.
The program can be dated to Game 8 between Boston and Pittsburgh by virtue of the scored interior. Auction officials say the condition of the program is the best of any of the small number of surviving examples of any programs from the ’03 Series, the first between the National League and its upstart rivals from the A.L. Heritage calls it “arguably the most significant baseball program that exists.”
The 8×10 ½” publication features opposing managers Fred Clarke (Pittsburgh) and Jimmy Collins (Boston) on the front. Local advertising and the center score page make up the remainder of the content, a rather humble start to a tradition that continues to this day with full-color, bound programs often consisting of over 100 pages.
The Boston Americans (later to be known as the Red Sox) captured the series with their Game 8 win (then a best of 9 affair) behind the pitching of Bill Dineen, who fanned Honus Wagner to finish a 3-0 whitewash in a tidy 1 hour and 35 minutes on October 13, 1903. “I was a joke in that Boston-Pittsburg Series,” the humble Wagner wrote later. “What does it profit a man to hammer along and make a few hits when they are not needed only to fall down when it comes to a pinch?”
Bidding will open early next month in the first Heritage Platinum Night Auction of the year.