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It all started here: The 21-year-old phenom went 3-for-6 and scored 3 runs in a 14-5 rout of the Browns before 25,000 fans at venerable Yankee Stadium. This was two years after Ruth's departure and three years before Gehrig's retirement. Joltin' Joe was the perfect torchbearer for the next generation of Yankee greatness. A news-clipping caption on the reverse recounts, "PRIZE ROOKIE'S BIG LEAGUE DEBUT / Joe DiMaggio, sensational young outfielder of the New York Yankees, is shown making his first appearance at the plate in major league baseball. Joe didn't get a hit this trip, grounding to third. But later he came through with a triple and two singles. His debut was postponed several weeks because of a burned foot."
The 7" x 9" photo, attributed to AP and then published by the Philadelphia Record, shows heavy publication usage with crop marks, editorial outlines/accents, a few spots of background masking and medium peripheral handling wear. Yet the central image area of Joe D is easily EX to EX/MT. A filing sticker label dates to the very next day, May 4th, and a reverse-side Record stamping documents the photo as being filed away on May 5th. As a note on rarity, we have never handled a DiMaggio debut at-bat photo before, nor could we find any record of one having been otherwise auctioned.
Historic May 3, 1936 Joe DiMaggio First Major League Appearance News Service Photo
Click above for larger image.