BOSTON — The collection of early Yankees captain and one-time American League MVP Roger Peckinpaugh sold for a combined total of $167,548, according to Boston-Based RR Auction. Absentee and online bidding was provided by LiveAuctioneers. All prices include buyer’s premium.
Peckinpaugh is often cited as one of the best players to not be enshrined in Cooperstown. Though chiefly remembered for his strong throwing arm and rangy play in the middle of the infield, he was also capable at the plate, collecting 1,876 career hits. Traded from Cleveland to the New York Yankees in 1913, he quickly established himself as a leader in the clubhouse and was named captain by manager Frank Chance the next year.
In 1914 — at the age of 23 — he became the youngest manager in the history of baseball, helming the Bronx Bombers for the last three weeks of the season after Chance’s resignation. He served as a mentor to budding superstar Babe Ruth in 1920 and 1921, before being shipped off to Washington by way of Boston.
Highlights from the Peckinpaugh collection, sold as individual lots, include his game-used 1918 New York Yankees uniform. The button-down gray flannel jersey features “New York” across the chest and features a red, white, and blue silk World War I memorial armband sold for $44,569.
“That this comes from one of baseball’s early stars, and arguably its most legendary franchise, makes this example truly remarkable,” said Bobby Livingston, executive vice president of RR Auction.
Peckinpaugh’s 1924 Washington Senators World Series championship watch fob is equivalent to a modern World Series ring — prior to rings becoming standard fare in 1926, players and coaches were commonly awarded pendants and watch fobs as championship ware. Peckinpaugh’s sold for $67,514.
Ruth and Peckinpaugh were teammates on the New York Yankees in 1920 and 1921, just as Ruth emerged as baseball’s premier home run hitter. On the day Peckinpaugh wrote this check, the Yankees squared off against Ty Cobb’s Detroit Tigers at the Polo Grounds. A Bank of Washington Heights counter check, filled out and signed by Roger Peckinpaugh, payable to Ruth for $1000, August 4, 1921, endorsed on the reverse by Babe Ruth, sold for $15,499.
Other top-selling lots from the sports sale include:
- 1952 Topps Mickey Mantle baseball card (Graded by SGC EX 5). One of the most recognizable and premiere cards within the hobby, SGC has conservatively assessed this appealing example, sold for $106,920.
- 1954 Topps #8 Gordie Howe (PSA NM-MT+ 8.5) sold for $38,588.
- 1968 Topps #177 Nolan Ryan/Jerry Koosman Rookie Card (PSA NM-MT 8) sold for $11,964.
“Baseball card prices continue to rise to record levels,” said RR Auction’s Livingston. ”We believe the Micky Mantle, Gordie Howe, and Noel Ryan rookie cards all broke records for their particular third-party grade.”
In addition, a gold medal from the 1932 Los Angeles Summer Olympics sold for $74,574.
View top auction results on LiveAuctioneers here: https://www.liveauctioneers.com/pages/recent-auction-sales/