“The Bloody Sock” worn by pitcher Curt Schilling in Game Two of the 2004 World Series, will be sold as part of Heritage Auctions’ Feb. 23 Platinum Night Sports event in New York next month. Consigned by Schilling, who is facing financial stress after his gaming company failed last year, carries a pre-auction estimate of $100,000+. You could call it the Bloody Sock Auction, but there’s a lot more in this event.
In 2004, Schilling ignored advice of the physician who had pieced back together the ragged tendons of his right ankle and took to the mound, first in a crucial Game Six to stave off American League Championship Series elimination against the hated New York Yankees and then again in Game Two of the World Series to claim the second victory in a four-game sweep of the St. Louis Cardinals. The ALCS sock was tossed in a dumpster and lost to history. It’s the World Series sock that’s on the block.
In each television broadcast, the cameras repeatedly locked onto the growing red stain at Schilling’s sutured push-off ankle. By the time the Sox had completed their extraordinary eight-game run to turn the tide from a three-game ALCS deficit to a World Series sweep, “The Bloody Sock” was famous. It became a symbol of the gritty Red Sox team that finally ended a long World Series championship drought. The sock had been on display at the Baseball Hall of Fame since the end of that season.
“This historic Red Sox relic serves as the physical incarnation of the exorcism of ‘The Curse of the Bambino just as the ‘The Buckner Ball’ is the curse’s embodiment,” said Chris Ivy, Director of Vintage Sports Memorabilia at Heritage Auctions. “Since we sold ‘The Buckner Ball’ in April of 2012 for almost $420,000, we thought this was a great opportunity to balance the scales and give collectors a chance to decide which moment is worth more.”
“Boston could win every World Series for the next hundred years, but 2004 will still be the one that everybody remembers,” said Ivy. “So I think we’re only just beginning to understand how important this piece is to the legacy of the Red Sox.”
The sock will be sold in the same event that includes 1980 U.S. Olympic hockey hero Mike Eruzione’s game-winning stick and jersey as well as his gold medal game worn jersey and other high end sports artifacts.