August Live 2014
This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on:
Eddie Plank's 1909-11 T206 White Border tobacco card is considered an ultra-rarity, with only about 100 examples known to exist and their values topping out at around $200,000. By contrast, there is only one Eddie Plank 1911 championship medal on the face of the earth—and here it is in all its splendor and glory.
This unique, never-before-seen treasure hails directly from the Plank estate and was acquired by our Philadelphia-based consignor several decades ago. It truly would be difficult to overstate the relic's exquisite preservation and jaw-dropping display quality. Condition is absolutely gorgeous all-around Near Mint. And the ornate designs of the 1-1/4"-diameter piece are tantamount in beauty, from the sparkling diamond to the three-dimensional wreath border to the engraved reverse ("PHILADELPHIA / EDWARD S PLANK / ATHLETICS") and raised-relief front ("WORLD'S CHAMPIONS / 1911"). There could be no finer companion piece to the 1910 A's championship trophy also offered in this auction, and we can hardly stress enough the significance of the medal's origins with none over than "Gettysburg Eddie."
The first southpaw ever to win 300 games and the third winningest of all time, Plank posted a 23-8 record in 1911 with a 2.10 ERA and 6 shutouts. (He still holds the career mark for shutouts by a lefty with 69.) In Game 2 of the 1911 World Series, he defeated fellow future HOFer Rube Marquard, giving up just 5 hits and 1 run. On the whole, it was a Fall Classic marred by 6 straight days of rain between Games 3 and 4, and headlined by Frank Baker's torrid offensive performance—a .375 average on 9 hits including two round-trippers that largely gave birth to his "Home Run" nickname. As for Plank, the 36-year-old vet later went 26-6 in 1912, took the mound in two more World Series (besting Christy Mathewson in 1913), retired after the 1917 season, and died of a stroke in 1926 at age 50. He is buried in Gettysburg, PA, where he long gave battlefield tours at the Gettsyburg National Military Park and where the restaurant Gettysburg Eddie's today pays homage to his legacy.
"Plank was not the fastest, not the trickiest and not the possessor of the most stuff," said teammate Eddie Collins, "but he was just the greatest." And this may well be Plank's greatest collectible.
Spectacular 1911 Eddie Plank Philadelphia Athletics World Championship Medal
Click above for larger image.