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1958-1969 San Francisco Giants Game-Used Cap Attributed to Willie Mays - SIA and Phil Wood LOAs

Lot Number 701

Quantity: Bid Starts: 07/22/2022 12:00:00 
Bid Open: 1500.00  Bid Ends: 08/04/2022 22:00:00 
Bid Count: Overtime: 30 Minutes
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Description



The Say Hey Kid's immortal number "24" is notated in black marker on the underside of the bill, and the Tim McAuliffe/KM Pro size-7 cap is appropriately styled, sized and tagged for his usage after the Giants' move from New York to San Francisco. Better yet, there is considerable wear on both the leather sweatband and inside hair cloth, as well as the lower edge of the McAuliffe logo tag. LOAs accompany from Sports Investors Authentication (SIA) and expert Phil Wood, whose thorough background description and conclusion are extensively excerpted here for maximum clarity and disclosure: 

 

"The Giants had purchased their caps through Tim McAuliffe, a longtime sporting goods rep who had his own label sewn into the caps he sold from roughly 1953 until he passed away in 1969. Never a manufacturer himself, McAuliffe's caps were made by other subcontractors, with the Leslie Company doing the bulk of the business. The Leslie Company was owned by Jacob Kaufman, and the 'KM Pro' brand (Kaufman-McAuliffe) was born, with a stamped KM Pro logo on the sweatband, alongside the McAuliffe cloth tag. For many years KM Pro ran an advertisement in The Sporting News offering to sell authentic major league caps to fans. JM Pro ads in the 1960s offered the caps for $7 plus shipping. (By the mid-1970s the price would almost double.) The idea that fans would pay that much in the 1960s for a real cap seemed impossible to most MLB clubs, which is why it took well into the 1970s before baseball marketing proved that fans wanted the real thing, not some cheesy cotton twill knockoff...As mentioned above, it was possible to buy genuine, brand new major league caps through mail order for many years (technically, it still is). Authenticating caps to specific players is problematic at best, without some form of forensic provenance, and even that can be sketchy. However, I can say for certain that this cap has the correct manufacturer's label, and corresponds to other examples of Willie Mays' caps in other collections (including Cooperstown) in terms of size. Other examples I've seen have been consistently size 7 or 6-7/8—Mays liked his cap to fly off when he was chasing a fly ball, as many vintage videos will bear out. In my expert opinion, this is a genuine McAuliffe/KM Pro San Francisco Giants cap as issued during the time frame that Willie Mays played for the franchise, 1958-69."



 
 
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