Just when you think every old autographed baseball has been found…
From Louisa Peartree in the Baltimore Messenger:
You know how somewhere in your home there is an old desk or dresser that isn’t used much? Maybe it was the desk used by a child who has long since grown up. Maybe it is an inherited piece you can’t part with (or if you do, your mother will kill you), but you keep it in an out-of-the-way place. Perhaps old pictures, sweaters or outdated documents fill its drawers.
Patricia Laidlow, a neighbor on Wingate Road in Keswick, MD, has just such a desk, one that’s been in her family for years. In her case the desk was used by her daughter through high school. It was emptied out when her daughter left for college some 20 years ago.
Since then, it has been a resting place for an odd document or, as Pat admitted, pieces of broken china. One day recently, as she was looking through the desk, she discovered a baseball wrapped in tissue. Upon inspection, the ball had several signatures scribbled on it.
Shortly after Pat’s discovery, she noticed that Seth Gray was playing catch outside. Seth is a knowledgeable young man who likes baseball. Pat shared the ball with Seth, who quickly advised her not to touch the leather, only the stitches.
After a quick inspection (and after picking his jaw off the ground) he told her one signature was that of none other than the Bambino, the Sultan of Swat, Babe Ruth.
Pat has since had the signatures authenticated by a baseball memorabilia dealer. There are six in all — all players from the 1931 Yankees. Pat said, "I have no idea where the ball came from; neither I nor anyone in my family remembers ever seeing it before."
She thinks perhaps it came from her maternal grandfather, a barber in Schenectady, N.Y., and a big sports fan. Pat has decided to place the ball up for auction, with $3,000 being the opening bid.