Note: Due to an imaging error, in the catalog and the original photograph on our website, the ball appeared to have dark discoloration on the west panel. It should be noted that such blemish does not exist due to a photoshop error. New photographs have been updated to accurately reflect the condition of the ball. Those with questions or concerns are encouraged to contact the home office.
In no particular order, home runs, women, saloons, hot dogs and golf were most prominent among Babe Ruth's rituals. Public adoration of the “Bambino,” meanwhile, led to massive throngs along the train stops for a lesser-known ritual: that of the Yankees "barnstorming" tour from their St. Petersburg, Florida spring training site until their season opener in the northern United States. The offered baseball was signed by Ruth at a 1930 exhibition in Charlotte, North Carolina. This particular sphere provides evidence of Ruth's immense popularity, as the factory stampings proclaim: "Babe Ruth Home Run Special.” The alternating red-and-blue laces resemble those on contemporary Major League orbs, true, but Spalding saw fit (and saw dollar signs) to put Ruth's name on its product. The youngster who purchased this keepsake carried out his plan, presenting it to Ruth for his highly sought autograph. On a side panel, Ruth penned: "To Paul Jr. - From (signed) Babe Ruth - April 11th 1930." The black-ink steel-tip fountain pen signature projects ("5-6") strength, with intermittent interruptions preventing higher technical assessment. The sphere itself (grade "4-5") shows expected evidence of handling and some minor surface abrasions, with the latter flaws not affecting Ruth's penning in the least. The Yankees, incidentally, triumphed by a 12-3 count that day, with Ruth collecting a single and a base on balls in four plate appearances (in high probability against Charlotte ace and eventual big leaguer Van Mungo). Full photo LOA from James Spence Authentications.