Gangs of New York: Ruth and Capone Autographed Baseball to be Auctioned

Al Capone Autographed BaseballBy now, it’s a matter of course that any collectible once owned, worn, or signed by the king of all baseball players, Babe Ruth, is worthy of attention, and also probably a whole bunch of money. A few days ago, an article in the New York Daily News appeared that puts that theory into practice. But where most stories about Babe Ruth these days are pretty cut and dried—new Ruth-signed collectible going up for auction—this most recent one has some interesting aspects that make it stand out a bit.

According to the Post article, a baseball signed by Babe Ruth and the notorious New York-born gangster Al Capone is being auctioned off by the Mile High Card Company, with a starting bidof $25,000. The article notes that the ball is thought to be capable of fetching a sum as high as $200,000—an amount that probably would’ve made Capone pretty happy.

So why—WHY—is there a baseball featuring signatures from the most famous representatives of two pretty different occupations, baseball player and gangster? Apparently back in 1931, before Capone was put away in Alcatraz prison, he was catching a game between the New York Yankees and the Chicago White Sox. Yankee player Herb Pennock asked Capone to autograph a ball, and then asked his teammate Babe Ruth to do the same. The result is one of the most uniquely signed baseballs in history.

So there you go. I wonder if there are any John Gotti/Wayne Gretzky signed hockey sticks out there? Everyone knows the Teflon Don was a big fan of the Edmonton Oilers.

[Via New York Daily News]



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wsidejack Are there newspaper articles that place Capone at that game or support the story? Or what otherwise is the provenance for Capone having been at that particular baseball game? July 19th, 2013 at 1:43 AM

Mark I got john gottis auto on a ball from 1991 ..from a park in howardbeach queens New York August 14th, 2013 at 10:42 PM

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