A touch of candid humor and classic period-signed origination mark this near-antique baseball as a must for advanced collectors. (5) Pittsburgh Pirates players that were teammates for the 1928-1931 seasons have signed this 1928-1933 Spalding No.1 model ONL/Heydler ball (VG), with factory stamps that are mostly discernible. Quite significant in its own right, this scarce sphere gets a major bump from the autographs of HOF brothers Paul (d.1965) and Lloyd (d.1982) Waner, who patrolled the Pirates outfield from 1926-1940 and 1927-1941 respectively.
Separating this ball from typical examples is the amusing inscription that accompanies Paul Waner’s stylish (“6-7”) signature, which reads in full as “yes-Paul Waner your honor my a _ _?” on the ball’s north panel, followed by an undetermined signature below. Nearly as distinct as the elder Waner sibling’s autograph, Lloyd Waner’s (“6”) strength signature sits alone on the east panel, next to the Spalding logo. Also present are the signatures of 1925-1931 Pirate infielder George Grantham (“4-5”, d.1954) signed prominently across the west panel and sweet spot as "Geo. "Boots" Grantham" and 1928-1932 Pirate pitcher Erv Brame (“4”, d.1949) on the west panel.
The ball is dated to the 1928-1933 period of issue by the factory stamp characteristics, which are: NL President John Heydler’s facsimile signature on the panel to the right of the “Official National League” stamp on the reverse sweet spot; the patent date being located on the panel above the RSS; and the larger stitching type on the Spalding logo below the RSS. Auction LOA from JSA.