Seven months later, they’d be celebrating a World Series championship but in March of 1936, the New York Yankees were putting in the work they’d need to overtake the defending champion Tigers. A new kid named DiMaggio had joined the club but the club’s slugging first baseman was still the guy who made them tick.
A rare photo from March of 1936, showing Lou Gehrig’s follow through on a swing during a game against the Cardinals, is on the auction block.
The 7×9 photo is one of over 500 being offered this month at RMY Auctions. Carrying a full dated caption, still attached to the back, it originated with Acme News Service. In the image, Gehrig’s sizeable frame is in motion as he prepares to drop the bat after making contact.
Behind him is catcher Brusie Ogradowski, the backup catcher to Spud Davis on the ’36 Cardinals. Ogradowski wasn’t in the majors for very long, but he holds the distinction of being the first big league batter to face teen sensation Bob Feller during a regular season exhibition game.
The umpire is Harry Geisel, who served as plate umpire in 1932, when Gehrig became the first modern era player to hit four homers in a game. He also had a Feller connection. Geisel was the plate umpire for Feller’s Opening Day no-hitter in 1940.
Gehrig would enjoy a terrific 1936 season, hitting .354 with 49 homers and 152 RBI, winning the American League’s MVP award.
The auction, with over 500 photos, continues through Saturday, January 12 at RMYAuctions.com