Ruth Ball Sells For A Record $183,500

Grey Flannel Auctions has added a new world record to its long list of achievements with the six-figure sale of a baseball signed by Babe Ruth the night before he died. A prized highlight of Grey Flannel’s January 22 auction, the PSA/DNA-authenticated ball opened for bidding at $5,000. Twenty-four bids later it had a new owner, who prevailed over the field of competitors at a heart-stopping $183,500. PSA subsequently confirmed the winning bid to be the highest price ever paid for single-signature personalized baseball.

The team at Grey Flannel has handled many historically important signed baseballs but felt strongly that the Ruth ball consigned to the January sale might be destined for the record books.

“We were excited about it from the first moment we set eyes on it,” said Grey Flannel’s Director of Operations, Michael Russek. “The autograph appeared impeccable. It was definitely the finest Ruth autograph we had ever seen on any item of sports memorabilia, not just baseballs. PSA/DNA, which is the ultimate authority when it comes to authenticating athletes’ signatures, graded the autograph a Mint 10, which is as high as it goes. I would be very surprised if a better example ever were to appear in the marketplace. Obviously our bidders felt the same way, because it was a fight to the finish.”

The story behind the ball adds an endearing footnote to Babe Ruth’s life story. In 1948, when his health was failing, Ruth was at a restaurant where a waiter approached him with a special request. The man asked if Ruth would autograph a ball for his daughter’s birthday. At first Ruth declined, but later on he returned and asked the waiter for the girl’s name, which was “Loraine.” Ruth signed the ball, then left. He passed away the very next day.

Many other outstanding prices were achieved in Grey Flannel’s first auction of 2020, which grossed $1,415,000. The earliest professional sports jersey ever handled by Grey Flannel Auctions, a 1902 Baltimore Orioles game-used flannel with direct family documentation, sold for $48,871. From the modern era, a pair of “Dream Team” basketball sneakers dual-autographed and game-worn by Michael Jordan at the 1992 Olympics soared to a $52,417 finish.

To discuss consigning sports memorabilia to a future Grey Flannel Auctions event, call 631-288-7800 or email info@greyflannelauctions.com. Visit the company online at www.greyflannelauctions.com.

Overtime! 450+ Lots Just Posted

In addition to the 563 lots highlighted in the printed catalog, our July 17th auction also features 450+ lots that are available online-only.

These late additions can be viewed in our overtime section by clicking here.

Just Added

Holiday Catalog Previews – Consign Today!

Contact us today to add your collectibles to this already stellar lineup!

We are now accepting consignments for our final catalog of 2016. Don’t risk getting shut out of this power-packed sale. Generous cash advances are readily available towards your Premier consignments and collections. If you have ever considered consigning to a Grey Flannel auction, NOW is the time as the prices realized that we have consistently shown our consignors have been nothing short of incredible.

If you have any questions or you are in need of additional information regarding the consignment process, please contact Michael Russek at (631) 288-7800 x230 – Michael@GreyFlannelAuctions.com or fill out our online consignment submission form.

Highlights include:

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1928 Babe Ruth & Lou Gehrig NY Yankees Murderers Row Dual-Signed Official American League Baseball | Babe Ruth & Lou Gehrig Bustin Babes & Larrupin’ Lou’s Dual-Signed B&W Barnstorming Photograph

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1/10/1996 Michael Jordan Chicago Bulls Game-Used Sneakers (35-Point Performance • Post-Game Gift from MJ to Kemp • 72-10 Championship Season • Regular Season & Finals MVP • Kemp Family LOA)

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1940 Jerome “Dizzy” Dean Tulsa Oilers Game-Used Home Flannel Uniform (2)(Photo-Matched • Scarce)

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2/2/2013 LeBron James Miami Heat Game-Used & Autographed Hardwood Classic Home Jersey (Photo-Matched • JSA • Upper Deck Hologram • Record-Setting Night)

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Corey “Philly” Brown Carolina Panthers Super Bowl 50 Game-Used Jersey & Helmet (2)(Photo-Matched • Brown LOAs)

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1983 George Brett Kansas City Royals Game-Used & Autographed Powder Blue Road Jersey (JSA • Scarce Road Example From The “Pine Tar Game” Season)

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12/25/2011 Stephen Curry Golden State Warriors Game-Used Christmas Day Home Jersey (NBA LOA • Photo-Matched)

Holiday Catalog Auction Previews – Consign Today!

Contact us today to add your collectibles to this already stellar lineup!

We are nearing the consignment deadline for our final catalog of 2015 and seeking just a few more Premier consignments before we close the books. Don’t risk getting shut out of this power-packed sale. Generous cash advances are readily available towards your Premier consignments and collections. If you have ever considered consigning to a Grey Flannel auction, NOW is the time as the prices realized that we have consistently shown our consignors have been nothing short of incredible.

If you have any questions or you are in need of additional information regarding the consignment process, please contact Michael Russek at (631) 288-7800 x230 – Michael@GreyFlannelAuctions.com or fill out our online consignment submission form.

 

Incredible 5/6/1925 Ty Cobb Game-Used & Autographed Record-Setting Home Run Baseball (Full JSA • PSA/DNA • Only Known Fully Documented Cobb HR Ball • 5th of 5 HRs In Consecutive Games)
Incredible 5/6/1925 Ty Cobb Game-Used & Autographed Record-Setting Home Run Baseball (Full JSA • PSA/DNA • Only Known Fully Documented Cobb HR Ball • 5th of 5 HRs In Consecutive Games)

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1992-93 Wayne Gretzky Los Angeles Kings Game-Used Road Jersey (Kings LOA • Trainer LOA • “SET 2” Team Inventory Tag)

1991-91 Johnny "Red" Kerr Chicago Bulls NBA Championship Ring with Original Presentation Box (MINT • Sourced From The Family)
1991-91 Johnny “Red” Kerr Chicago Bulls NBA Championship Ring with Original Presentation Box (MINT • Sourced From The Family)

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12/10/1961 Lou “The Toe” Groza Cleveland Browns Record Breaking Game-Used Road Durene Jersey (Photomach • NFL Record 826 Total Points Scored • Family LOA • Hobby Fresh)

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Early 1970s Dick Butkus Chicago Bears Game-Used & Autographed Road Jersey (Scarce • Great Use)

12/30/2007 Brett Favre Green Bay Packers Game-Used & Autographed Home Jersey (JSA • Favre LOA • Final Regular Season Game In Lambeau • Career TDs #441 & #442 • Photomatch)
12/30/2007 Brett Favre Green Bay Packers Game-Used & Autographed Home Jersey (JSA • Favre LOA • Final Regular Season Game In Lambeau • Career TDs #441 & #442 • Photomatch)

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Extremely High-Grade 1931 & 1933 New York Yankees Team Autographed Official American League Baseballs Each Featuring Ruth & Gehrig (Full JSA LOAs)

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Circa 1982 George “Iceman” Gervin San Antonio Spurs Game-Used Home Jersey (Gervin LOA • Head Trainer LOA)

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2009 Derek Jeter Team USA World Baseball Classic Game-Used Road Jersey (MLB Hologram) & 2010 Derek Jeter New York Yankees Game-Used & Autographed Road Jersey (Steiner LOA • MLB Hologram • Steinbrenner & Sheppard Patches • Houk Armband)

High-Grade 1948 Babe Ruth Single-Signed Official American League Baseball (Full JSA LOA • PSA/DNA Sig Grade 8 • Letter of Provenance • Hobby Fresh)
High-Grade 1948 Babe Ruth Single-Signed Official American League Baseball (Full JSA LOA • PSA/DNA Sig Grade 8 • Letter of Provenance • Hobby Fresh)

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Photo-Matched 1989 Ken Griffey Jr. Rookie Seattle Mariners Game-Used Home Jersey (Rare • Great Use)

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Photo-Matched 1996-97 Scottie Pippen Chicago Bulls Game-Used & Twice-Autographed Black Pinstripe Alternate Uniform (2)(JSA • Bulls LOA • Championship Season)

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1996 Michael Jordan Chicago Bulls NBA Finals Worn Shooting Shirt (Bulls LOAs • 72-10 Championship Season • Regular Season & Finals MVP)

Historically Significant 1951 Inaugural NBA All-Star Game MVP Trophy Awarded To HOFer "Easy" Ed Macauley (MINT • Macauley Family LOA)
Historically Significant 1951 Inaugural NBA All-Star Game MVP Trophy Awarded To HOFer “Easy” Ed Macauley (MINT • Macauley Family LOA)

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Circa 1984 Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Los Angeles Lakers Worn Home Warm-Up Jacket (Scarce)

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1986-87 Julius “Dr. J” Erving Philadelphia 76ers Game-Used & Autographed Home Uniform (Equipment Manager LOA • Final Season)

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1927 New York Yankees “Murderers’ Row” Team-Signed Photo Featuring Ruth & Gehrig (Full JSA • Championship Season)

1971 Pete Rose Cincinnati Reds Game-Used & Autographed Road Flannel Jersey with Possible Attribution to the 1970 World Series (JSA • PSA/DNA • Graded A9.5)
1971 Pete Rose Cincinnati Reds Game-Used & Autographed Road Flannel Jersey with Possible Attribution to the 1970 World Series (JSA • PSA/DNA • Graded A9.5)

1953 "Easy" Ed Macauley NBA All-Star Game-Used & Autographed Eastern Conference Uniform with Stirrups (3)(JSA • Macauley Family LOA)
1953 “Easy” Ed Macauley NBA All-Star Game-Used & Autographed Eastern Conference Uniform with Stirrups (3)(JSA • Macauley Family LOA)

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Video-Matched 9/13/1987 Eric Dickerson Los Angeles Rams Game-Used & Twice-Autographed Road Jersey (152 All-Purpose Yards • Numerous Repairs)

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Photo-Match 6/14/2007 Tim Duncan San Antonio Spurs NBA Finals Game 4 Championship Clinching Game-Used Road Jersey (Championship Season)

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1996-97 Kobe Bryant Rookie Los Angeles Lakers Worn Road Warm-Up Jacket (Rare)

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1925-68 Original Madison Square Garden Wooden Double Seats (Fantastic Condition • Great Documentation)

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RESULTS: Babe Ruth’s 1934 Tour of Japan Cap Sells For A Staggering $303,277!

WESTHAMPTON, N.Y. – A new chapter was added to the legend of Babe Ruth during the early morning hours of December 18th. Grey Flannel Auctions sold the baseball cap the immortal slugger wore during the historic 1934 US All-Star Tour of Japan for $303,277.

The game-used navy blue cap emblazoned “US” was acquired from the Ruth family more than 30 years ago and had remained in private hands from that day forward. It is the only known Ruth cap from the American team’s barnstorming tour of 18 Japanese cities.

“Nearly half a million Japanese fans lined the streets of Tokyo to view the team motorcade and welcome Babe Ruth, who rode through the Ginza district in an open-top limousine. The tour was a major news event and received press coverage worldwide,” said Richard E. Russek, president of Grey Flannel Auctions. The Ruth cap opened for bidding in late November, at $50,000, but competition really heated up during the final 24 hours of the December 17 absentee, phone and Internet auction. The winning bid of $303,277 was placed around 9:05 on the morning of December 18th by a private collector who wishes to remain anonymous.

Another high-profile cap, game-worn by Joe DiMaggio, dated to around 1937, when the great Yankee Clipper was still a rookie. Extremely rare and in beautiful, all-original condition, the cap opened for bidding at $25,000 and eventually reached $151,652.

From the same general era, a 1932 baseball signed by the New York Yankees – with 23 signatures, including those of Ruth, Lou Gehrig and seven other Hall of Famers – was a high flyer at $115,242.

Other auction highlights included a 1950s Brooklyn Dodgers heavyweight satin jacket that was owned and worn by Roy Campanella, $71,554; and a circa-1980s Philadelphia 76ers road uniform game-worn by Julius “Dr. J” Erving, $44,428.

In total, Grey Flannel’s Holiday Auction 2014 grossed $2,084,460, inclusive of a 20% buyer’s premium.

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DiMaggio and Ruth Caps Crown Stellar Lineup of Sports Treasures

Bidding Is Now Open! 

Physical catalogs are currently at the printer and will begin to mail later this month.

Circa 1937 Joe DiMaggio Rookie Era New York Yankees Game-Used Cap (Exceedingly Rare)

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1934 Babe Ruth Tour of Japan Game-Used Cap (Only Known Example • Sourced From The Ruth Family 30+ Years Ago)

The VIP hat rack is full at Grey Flannel Auctions’ December 17th Holiday Auction, and you won’t believe whose caps are displayed side by side – none other than New York Yankee immortals Babe Ruth and Joe DiMaggio.

“It’s totally coincidental that two of the rarest and most coveted baseball caps of all time found their way to the same auction, but it’s our good fortune that they did. We’re tremendously proud to be offering these unique items to collectors,” said Richard E. Russek, president of Grey Flannel Auctions.

The game-used Babe Ruth cap, which was sourced from the Ruth family over 30 years ago, is the only example known to have been worn by the Bambino during his 1934 Tour of Japan, which took place only weeks after his departure from the Yankees. The December 17 Grey Flannel event marks the first time the Ruth cap from the historic Tour of Japan has ever come to auction.

“The 1934 tour made headlines around the world,” said Russek. “Nearly half a million Japanese fans lined the streets of Tokyo to welcome the great former-Yankee ballplayer, who rode through the Ginza district an open-top limousine. He and his teammates stayed in Japan for a month and played 18 exhibition games against Japanese players in 12 cities. That tour was a chapter in baseball history all on its own.”

The cap has “US” embroidered on the front, and inside the sweatband, the name “Babe Ruth” is embroidered in chain stitching. The cap is accompanied by an LOA from the consignor, who was close friends with a prominent man in the Babe Ruth Baseball Little League organization who obtained it directly from the Ruth family. The minimum bid on the cap, which will open the auction as Lot 1, is $50,000.

A circa-1937 rookie-era Yankees cap that was game-used by the great Yankee Clipper, Joe DiMaggio, is entered as Lot 635. The extremely rare navy blue wool cap with NY logo is in beautiful, all-original condition. Embroidered inside the sweatband is “7 J. DiMaggio.” The consignor’s family has owned and treasured the DiMaggio cap since the day the legendary slugger took it off his head and handed it to them. The auction reserve on this item is $25,000.

Other highlights in Grey Flannel’s Holiday Auction include:

Lot #4 – a 1932 New York Yankees baseball team-signed by arguably the best hitting lineup ever assembled. The baseball holds signatures from 10 Hall of Fame inductees, including Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig. It has an optimal display factor, with the Ruth and Gehrig signature each rating a near 9 prominently displayed adjacent to one another. Sourced through from a member of the New York Yankees’ grounds crew, its reserve is $5,000.

Lot #17 – Derek Jeter’s game-used and autographed home pinstripe jersey from a milestone game, where he recorded his 3,110th hit, tying childhood idol, Dave Winfield. The jersey was worn on 4/19/2012 and has been conclusively photo-matched. Reserve: $2,500.

Lot #62 – Gary Carter game-used homerun baseball from Game 4 of the 1986 World Series. Carter personally inscribed the baseball, and it captures all the spirit from the 1986 “Miracle Mets” season. The auction reserve is $2,500.

Lot #314 – An extremely rare official program from the 1924 World’s Colored Championship, which was the first Negro League World Series. This piece of baseball history is in outstanding condition and is entered with a $2,500 reserve.

Lot #357 – Arnold Palmer’s Masters Tournament-worn monogrammed sweater from his final major victory in 1964. The sweater boasts a unique combination of having been worn by one of the best players of all time in the most prestigious tournament the sport has to offer. Originally part of a Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame exhibit that was on display in Pittsburgh’s Three Rivers Stadium, it is accompanied by the original cardboard display from that exhibit. Reserve: $5,000.

Lot #410 – Future first-ballot Hall of Fame inductee Peyton Manning’s game-used Denver Broncos road jersey, worn on 12/12/2013. In this “Orange Crush” jersey, Manning threw for 289 yards and two touchdowns. Reserve: $2,500.

Lot #500 – Michael Jordan’s University of North Carolina Tar Heels “Freshman Year” game-used and autographed sneakers. These sneakers were consigned to Grey Flannel by a childhood friend of Jordan’s and have impeccable provenance. They are the earliest known, fully documented game-used Jordan sneakers in existence. The auction reserve is $5,000.

Lot #633 – Circa 1980s Julius “Dr. J” Erving Philadelphia 76ers game-used uniform. This classic-style NBA jersey displays outstanding use and may be the finest Dr. J gamer in the hobby. Reserve: $5,000. This lot and other Julius Erving items in Grey Flannel’s sale, including his 1978 Atlanta NBA All-Star ring and his 20,000 career points game-used basketball, all come with direct provenance from Dr. J.

Grey Flannel’s Holiday Auction will open for bidding on Nov. 21 and close on December 17, 2014. The fully illustrated electronic version of the catalog is available to view online at http://www.GreyFlannelAuctions.com. For additional information, call 631-288-7800, ext. 223; or email info@greyflannelauctions.com.

 

Full Previews Are Now Online

Bidding for this sale will open on November 21st at 10:00 am EST.

Physical catalogs are currently at the printer and will begin to mail later this month.

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Featured Highlights Include:

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1934 Babe Ruth Tour of Japan Game-Used Cap (Only Known Example • Sourced From The Ruth Family 30+ Years Ago)

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Julius “Dr. J” Erving Collection Including a Photo-Matched & Pounded Uniform, 20,000 Career Points Trophy Ball, ’78 All-Star Ring And More All With Direct Provenance

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1981-82 Michael Jordan University of North Carolina Tar Heels “Freshman Year” Game-Used & Autographed Sneakers (Gifted By MJ Directly To Our Consignor • Championship Season • Earliest Known Example)

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1932 New York Yankees Official American League Team Signed Baseball Including Ruth & Gehrig (Full JSA • Championship Season • 23 Sigs & 9 HoFers • Sourced From Grounds Crew)

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Circa 1937 Joe DiMaggio Rookie Era New York Yankees Game-Used Cap (Exceedingly Rare)

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Incredible Selection of Championship Jewelry With Direct Provenance

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Arnold Palmer’s 1964 Masters Tournament-Worn Monogrammed Sweater, 1952 Western Pennsylvania Golf Association Amateur Championship Trophy & 1967 Ryder Cup USA Team Travel Bag (Originally part of a Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame exhibit that was on display at Three Rivers Stadium in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania)

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1950s Roy Campanella Brooklyn Dodgers Worn Heavyweight Satin Jacket (Sourced From Dodgers Charity Auction • Likely NL MVP & Championship Season)

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12/8/2013 Calvin Johnson Detroit Lions Game-Used Road Jersey (Multiple Photomatches • Unwashed • Franchise Record Setting Performance • PSA/DNA)

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4/19/2012 Derek Jeter Game-Used & Autographed Home Jersey (Photomatched • 3,110th Career Hit Tying Dave Winfield) & 2006 Game-Used & Autographed Bat (PSA/DNA Graded GU9 • Steiner LOA Hand-Signed by Jeter)

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2002 Allen Iverson “Number 6” NBA All-Star Game-Used Eastern Conference Jersey (“Dr. J” Tribute • Acquired Directly From Iverson After The Game)

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5/19/1979 Mike Schmidt Philadelphia Phillies Game-Used & Autographed “Saturday Night” Burgundy Alternate Uniform (Extremely Rare One Game Style)

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1981 Mike Schmidt Philadelphia Phillies Game-Used & Autographed Home Jersey (Photomatched • NL MVP Season • Fantastic Example)

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1986 “Miracle Mets” Gary Carter World Series Game 4 Game-Used & Personally Inscribed Home Run Baseball (Carter Family LOA • Game-Winning HR)

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1973-74 Dave Cowens Boston Celtics Game-Used Home Uniform (Championship Season • Photomatched • Cowens LOA • Pounded)

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Early 1960s Bob Cousy Boston Celtics Worn Fleece Home Warm-Up Jacket (Extremely Rare)

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5/1/1996 Michael Jordan Chicago Bulls Eastern Conference Playoffs Game-Used & Autographed Sneakers (72-10 Championship Season • Regular Season & Finals MVP • Ball Boy LOA)

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12/12/2013 Peyton Manning Denver Broncos Game-Used Road Jersey (Photomatched • Unwashed • Broncos LOA • Panini LOA)

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Jerry Rice & Steve Young San Francisco 49ers Game-Used Jerseys (49ers LOAs)

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Outstanding Photo-Matched Game-Used Football

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