June 5th, 2022 Summer Games Auction (#58)
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Willie Mays was nicknamed “The Say Hey Kid” and many consider him to be the greatest all-around player of all time. Mays won two MVP awards during his big league career and tied a record with twenty-four appearances in the All-Star Game. He ended his career with 660 career home runs. In 1999, Mays placed second on The Sporting News list of the 100 Greatest Baseball Players, making him the highest-ranking living player. He finished his career with a record 22 extra-inning home runs and is one of four NL players to have eight consecutive 100-RBI seasons. Other accolades include a World Championship in 1954, a twelve time Gold Glove Award winner, 1951 Rookie of the Year and voted the All-Star Game MVP twice. He was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1979, his first year of eligibility. On April 30th, 1961 Mays hit four home runs for the SF Giants in their 14-4 victory over the Milwaukee Braves. He became the seventh player since 1900 to accomplish this feat. It was the most prolific day of a wondrous Hall of Fame career for Mays. Offered in this lot is the cap attributed to that historic day. In the rear sweatband is the McAuliffe manufacturer’s tag with the “KM PRO CAP” stamp adjacent to the right. The cap is stamped size “7 5/8” but actually measures much smaller which is appropriate for Mays. The Giants team “SF” logo is embroidered on the front of the black cap in orange. Under the brim of the cap reads “MAYS 24” handwritten in black marker. Mays also signed under the brim in black ink with the added inscriptions “To Waite” and “May 30th 1961” which is heavily faded. Adjacent to the right reads “CAP WORN BY MAYS WHEN HE HIT 4 HOME RUNS APRIL 30TH MILWAUKEE” in black ink. This cap was gifted by Mays to Cincinnati Reds Hall of Fame announcer Waite Hoyt on May 30th, 1961. Accompanied by a Full LOA from JSA and a copy of a letter from Waite Hoyt detailing that the cap was his and was worn during Mays’ four home run game on April 30th.
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