“I am not surprised that the sale of ‘Black Betsy’ has set a record for the most valuable bat. It is undoubtedly a significant piece of baseball history,” said Vince Malta, authenticator for Professional Sports Authenticator (PSA).
The buyer of the bat is Rob Mitchell, based outside of Philadephia, PA. He has been a long-time collector and sports memorabilia specialist, and says that this is his first purchase on eBay. “I want to say thank you to Real Legends and eBay. I’m very excited about becoming the new owner of Shoeless Joe’s ‘Black Betsy’ bat. I plan to cherish this bat,” said Mitchell.
“We’re pleased with the outcome of this sale on eBay,” said Kevin Hammond, CEO of Real Legends. “We’re delighted with the opportunity to be the very first to sell the ‘Black Betsy’ bat, and work with the family members of Shoeless Joe to make this sale happen.”
‘Black Betsy’ is one of the bats that Shoeless Joe Jackson named and kept for himself, used throughout his baseball career, and ultimately handed down to a family member. Handmade out of hickory, the bat weighs more than 40 ounces, compared to today’s average bat weight of 32 to 34 ounces. In addition to ‘Black Betsy,’ a bat bearing his rare autograph and many other unique Shoeless Joe items sold by Real Legends on eBay.
With the third highest career batting average of .356, Joe Jackson’s name can be found throughout baseball record books. Nicknamed ‘Shoeless’ Joe when he incidentally played ball barefoot after getting blisters on his feet from a new pair of cleats, Jackson had a spectacular 13-year career and was known for a swing so perfect, the great Babe Ruth admitted to copying it. The peak of Joe’s career was the 1919 World Series in which he hit .375 and played errorless outfield. Soon, thereafter, the famous ‘Black Sox’ scandal erupted, tarnishing the White Sox team and leading to a controversial ending to Jackson’s major league career. Shoeless Joe Jackson passed away on December 5, 1951.
eBay is the world’s online marketplaceTM. Founded in 1995, eBay created a powerful platform for the sale of goods and services by a passionate community of individuals and businesses. On any given day, there are millions of items across thousands of categories for sale on eBay, as well as on Half.com, eBay’s site dedicated to fixed price trading. eBay enables trade on a local, national and international basis with customized sites in markets around the world.
About Real Legends
Real Legends is recognized throughout the sports memorabilia hobby as an expert in the field of auctions. In addition, the Vista, California-based company hosts a highly acclaimed sports card Web site. RealLegends.com supplies card collectors with the current market value of their cards based on closed auction sales from eBay. For more information, please contact Simon H. Mackenzie, Real Legends, at 760-597-0198, 760-597-0073 or smackenzie@RealLegends.com.