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  #21  
Old 09-18-2018, 07:34 AM
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ullmandds ullmandds is offline
pete ullman
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Yes...apparently there is a 5 under the logo...indicating a less expensive bat from the time period. Seeing as in 1910 the manufacturer did not really differentiate professional vs non professional bats...and the quality of the wood is comparable to more expensive bats...I do not believe this to be a smoking gun proving this is not a jennings used bat. This combined with Steve's observation that the manufacturer did not advertise "endorsed" bats with players names which would have been beneficial to their sales figures...I think it is possible that this bat could have been used by jennings.

The only way this could be proven would be to find photo/image of hughie holding similar bat...which is unlikely.

Here's steve's last response to me:

Hello Pete,

The problem is there are no factory records to connect any player to the
bat. The MEARS letter of opinion in the Goledinauctions.com Keeler bat
auction basically states that it is "plausible" that the practice during
this era used by H&B to add a players name to the knob in block letters
"could have" been transferred to Pontiac, a subsidiary company, and that
"might" explain the name Keeler on the knob. (key words here "plausible"
"Could have" "might")

MEARS goes on to state; "The players name on the knob of the bat serves
as a payer identification but due to the 'lack of supporting
documentation,' we cannot designate the bat as professional only, and may
have been available as a retail model."

"plausible" "could have" "might" "Lack of supporting documentation" is a
way of saying we really don't know but in order to charge you money for
our opinion we use these words.

Personally my opinion (at no charge) is that the bats were not available
in the retail market with the players name on the knob. If it were
available they would have used it in the retail advertising. I have a
couple of hardware store catalog ad. The 1912 has no mention of players.
The 1915 ad vaguely states "endorsed by leading professional players" no
listing of player's names.

The next page lists Louisville Slugger bats with player's names listed,
and a player endorsed decal on the barrel. Using this it is my opinion
that the name on the knob was not available in the retail market. It
would have been a great selling point, and it's not mentioned.

I believe you have a professional model, but without strong provenance,
or factory records, that do not exist, you will only have a professional
model. If you had the bat evaluated by MEARS or PSA, they could only
render an opinion using words such as "plausible" "might" and then charge
you money.

If it is evaluated, in their opinion a pro bat, and it is "plausible"
that Jennings "might" have used the bat based on the player use
specifications of professional bats order through H&B, then you added
value to the bat, but without strong provenance, it's still based on
speculation. If you don't plan on selling the bat you spent money to have
someone tell you that it's possible that Jennings might have used it. No
closer in fact, that it was before you spent the money.

Just a no profit opinion. (and I think my opinion "might" be "plausible")
:-) -Steven

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  #22  
Old 09-18-2018, 10:32 AM
JoeDfan JoeDfan is offline
Sean Sullivan
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I think you might have a winner there. All of that sounds very logical to me.
But I am no expert.
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  #23  
Old 09-18-2018, 11:13 AM
murphusa murphusa is offline
Jim Murphy
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The endorsement of professional baseball bats started with Honus Wagner in 1905. Jennings career was all but over in 1903 when he came to bat 19 times for Philadelphia.. He played in Baltimore, New York and Philadelphia during his professional career.

He was born and raised in Scranton PA

In 1907 he was named manager of the Tigers
His at bats in Detroit as a player
1907 4
1909 4
1912 1



PTC was a regional company.

During the time period there were two Professional Leagues in Michigan. The Southern Michigan and West Michigan Leagues. Where did they buy their professional bat? I'll bet PTC

go online and look at the pictures of all the bats which are said to be a Keller, Chance, Blount, Lajoie and the Jennings. All of the center brands are crisp and clean in their lettering. Now look at the knobs. All are irregular.

I don't believe that the PTC put those names on the bat pictured

I am more inclined to guess that someone other than PTC put the names on the bats
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  #24  
Old 09-18-2018, 11:46 AM
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Mark L
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Quote:
Originally Posted by murphusa View Post
The endorsement of professional baseball bats started with Honus Wagner in 1905. Jennings career was all but over in 1903 when he came to bat 19 times for Philadelphia.. He played in Baltimore, New York and Philadelphia during his professional career.

He was born and raised in Scranton PA

In 1907 he was named manager of the Tigers
His at bats in Detroit as a player
1907 4
1909 4
1912 1



PTC was a regional company.

During the time period there were two Professional Leagues in Michigan. The Southern Michigan and West Michigan Leagues. Where did they buy their professional bat? I'll bet PTC

go online and look at the pictures of all the bats which are said to be a Keller, Chance, Blount, Lajoie and the Jennings. All of the center brands are crisp and clean in their lettering. Now look at the knobs. All are irregular.

I don't believe that the PTC put those names on the bat pictured

I am more inclined to guess that someone other than PTC put the names on the bats
"I am more inclined to guess that someone other than PTC put the names on the bats"

The plot thickens!
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  #25  
Old 09-18-2018, 11:57 AM
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ullmandds ullmandds is offline
pete ullman
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark View Post
"I am more inclined to guess that someone other than PTC put the names on the bats"

The plot thickens!
the names and the brands?????
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  #26  
Old 09-18-2018, 12:03 PM
Huysmans Huysmans is offline
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Hey Jim, the 1905 date for Wagner's H&S endorsement is usually cited, but do we know for sure that no other company had endorsements sooner? If Bud made the first Louisville bat for Pete Browning in the mid-1880s, there seems to be a two-decade gap between, with more than enough time for a secondary maker to possibly enter into the market of producing player bats. I seem to remember YEARS AGO a Wright & Ditson bat on Ebay that was advertised as a late-19th century example, with "Kelly" in block letters, with the seller claiming it was produced for King Kelly.

I don't have access to my Hillerich & Bradsby book currently, the H&B Wiki page mention's the date, but their source is a 2009 New Yorker article that states "Although athletes have been endorsing products for more than a century—beginning, by most accounts, in 1905, when Honus Wagner put his name on Louisville Slugger bats". The use of "by most accounts" is troubling. Are there any sources contemporary to Wagner's signing with H&B that state the company was entering new territory? This may have all been confirmed previously, I'm just unaware if it has?

Brent
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  #27  
Old 09-18-2018, 12:30 PM
murphusa murphusa is offline
Jim Murphy
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Brent,

The real thing is that all of the PTC bats that show an endorsement in block letters all have a different block used to make them. Some even with letters of different sizes.

Curly Blount bat??? of course a pitcher with only 49 at bats would have an endorsement deal

I have seen too many early bats doctored up with someone else punching a name on them
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  #28  
Old 09-18-2018, 12:42 PM
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Mark L
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Quote:
Originally Posted by murphusa View Post
Brent,

I have seen too many early bats doctored up with someone else punching a name on them
I have seen this a couple of times, but, of course, I could tell because the attempts were very badly done. Do you have any good stories or helpful hints about spotting the fakes?
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  #29  
Old 09-18-2018, 02:24 PM
Huysmans Huysmans is offline
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Hey Jim, I'm not disputing whether the Jennings PTC bat is an actual player-endorsed model, what I'm questioning is whether it's well documented or not that Wagner was in fact the first athlete to have an endorsed product.
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  #30  
Old 09-18-2018, 04:13 PM
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http://sports.mearsonlineauctions.co...-lot78550.aspx
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