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  #1  
Old 12-04-2004, 10:58 AM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: Robert Plancich

I recently received an auction catalog from American Memorabilia for their current auction that ends on December 9th. Lot #1 description reads "Early Ty Cobb Game Used Decal Bat, Finest Known." The SCDA Letter of Authenticity (LOA) states the following - under the Manufacturer Characteristics section it states that this bat was used during the regular season(s) 1911 -1916 and that the bat was made from "Professional Grade Ash". Under the Player Characteristics (Positive) section it states that the bat exhibits "heavy" game use. It also states that there are no visible ball and/or stitch marks because of the hardness of the wood (Professional Ash). It also states that Mr. Bushing's "forensic examination" revealed "several Cobb style scattered cleat marks" about the barrel. Finally, Mr. Bushing performed some sort of "Grain examination" and the results of that examination revealed that it was "Professional" grain. The LOA Certification number for this bat is 251862 and the bat was awarded an SCDA "Final Grade A5".

Now according to SCD Authentic Bat Grading Criteria a bat which is graded an A5 is described as an "Authenticated Bat with Noted Problems of Usage and/or Player Characteristics". Under this grade section it states that "Physical characteristics of the bat have been examined and negative traits are present - this includes no game use." However if you review the LOA and the section heading titled "Player Characteristics (Negative) for this bat there is nothing listed, in fact all 8 of the categories for this section are answered as N/A. The LOA also states that this bat "matches known weight and style for the era" regarding the factory records. However, when you review the SCDA bat criteria it states that when "dealing with Pre-1930 Louisville Slugger bats, since there are no factory records, factory production details of the bat have been compared to found or existing records of known lenghts, weights, model and proper labeling period." Finally, the LOA states under the section titled "Comments" that this is a "very rare Ty Cobb decal bat from 1911 to 1916. Pre dates signature models. 33 1/2" only made for professional use. Desireable hand turned knob showing special attention was given to bat."

The auction catalog description states the folloing -"This bat has been thoroughly examined by the world's foremost authority on the subject, David Bushing, who notes that the bat matches all known identifiers and specifications for a proper hand-turned Ty Cobb gamer, including proper weight of 36 ounces and 33-1/2 inches. It features its original H&B decal depicting Cobb in his Detroit uniform , and it too is gorgeous, in solid condition with expected age and evident wear from game use, but the image and graphic are almost 90% complete."

I have emailed Messrs. Bushing and Troy Kinunen (Director of Authentication for SCDA) about this bat and the numerous questions regarding it's authenticity, game-use, Cobb style cleat marks, not to mention the obvious contradictions between the LOA that they issued and their own stated Bat Grading Criteria but haven't head back from either of them. I contacted another bat expert and was told in no uncertain words that these decal bats are simply store/retail model "souvenir" type bats and were not made for professional use, nor were they used by the players - no way, no how!

I have made every effort to handle these types of situations directly with Messrs. Bushing, Knoll, Kinunen, as well as with Rocky Landsverk and T.S. O'Connell from SCD and every email that I have sent has gone unanswered and ignored. This bat is an out-and-out fake! There is no difference between those that forge autographs and those that authenticate "bad stuff" for lack of a better term, in my opinion. SCD is just as responsible because they refuse to write about it because they are in turn profiting from this cozy arrangement. An article that recently appeared in the New York Daily News that was written By Michael O'Keeffe and said article has been posted by one of your members states that Mr. Bushing said that he didn't know who used or more correctly who put the "cleat" marks on this bat. Basically, Bushing is saying that this is a used Ty Cobb decal bat, not a Ty Cobb used (game) bat. The bat currently has an outstanding bid of $37,000.00! Furthermore, it has been learned that Mr. Bushing used to own this particular bat which would explain why he wasv forced to cover himself with this ridiculous, falsified and contadictory LOA. When is this type of madness going to stop? He claims to dedicate his efforts to "keeping the hobby clean for generations to come." He misdated the DiMaggio glove that I recently wrote about by 25 years, a quarter of a century! Now we are to believe that he can date the DiMaggio "streak" bat to the exact and only week that the bat could have been used (07.10.41 - 07.17.41). He dates this "historically significant piece of......lumber" to have been used from 1911 - 1916 during the regular season. I just don't get it. Where money lies, integrity dies ... it's all about the Benjamins, dead presidents.

In advance, I would like to thank the members for their time, anticipated cooperation and consideration of these matters. I welcome any and all comments and/or suggestions, pro and con, for or against.

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Old 12-04-2004, 11:46 AM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: Marc S.

Bushing is an active buyer of bats - which absolutely causes conflicts of interest for someone also serving as a professional authenticator. If you look at baseball cards, in comparison - all of the major grading companies have graders and authenticators that are not (at least outwardly) actively involved in the business of buying and selling baseball cards.

Also - I believe that Messrs. Bushing and Knoll possess extensive database records from many of the major bat manufacturers. Although this serves to give them additional information as it relates to authenticating bats - as this information is not publicly available in any way - it prevents the public scrutiny that often serves as a good balancing mechanism towards temptation.

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Old 12-04-2004, 12:23 PM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: jay behrens

Mike Montbriand is the only person I would trust when it comes to bats.

Jay

Recently there was a fistfight between fans and players at a professional basketball game. Not to be outdone, the National Hockey League has announced that when they resume their season, not only will several fans be beaten every period, but one lucky fan each game will be run over by the Zamboni.

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Old 12-04-2004, 05:14 PM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: scgaynor

It is only common sense that Cobb would not be issued a decal bat. I don't think that anybody who really knows bats believes that Ty Cobb actually used it. And in my opinion, I don't think that anybody who knows anything about vintage photography believes that the Old Judge Proofs are real either.

The reason that they are getting material like that is probably because no other auction house will touch it.

It is beginning to seem like all that you have to do to find the questionable material is look at the cover of the catalog.

Scott

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Old 12-04-2004, 07:12 PM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: Joe P.

Marc S.:
"Robert - it is interesting to note that

Bushing is an active buyer of bats - which absolutely causes conflicts of interest for someone also serving as a professional authenticator. If you look at baseball cards, in comparison - all of the major grading companies have graders and authenticators that are not (at least outwardly) actively involved in the business of buying and selling baseball cards."
*
*
"(at least outwardly)"

Come on Marc, enough with this naive in denial bit.
Either you have a piece of the action, or you really believe what your saying.

When Alan Rosen worked as a consultant for SGC, do you really think that Alan divested himself from all his card holdings?




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  #6  
Old 12-04-2004, 07:41 PM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: qualitycards

"was told in no uncertain words that these decal bats are simply store/retail model "souvenir" type bats and were not made for professional use, nor were they used by the players - no way, no how!"

This should be easy enough to document as there are a ton of Ty Cobb photographs from this era. Do any of them show him holding this type of bat at the plate?

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Old 12-04-2004, 07:48 PM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: jay behrens

I'm no bat expert, but every knowledgable source I've ever talked to has said decal bats were never used by players.

American Memorabilia isn't exactly building a good reputation for themselves.

Jay

Recently there was a fistfight between fans and players at a professional basketball game. Not to be outdone, the National Hockey League has announced that when they resume their season, not only will several fans be beaten every period, but one lucky fan each game will be run over by the Zamboni.

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Old 12-04-2004, 08:41 PM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: hankron

As far as experts go, I think all that matters is the quality/accuracy of the opinion, not whether or not they actively buy and sell. If you want to say that there should be disclosure that they have their financial hand in this or that, I'll go along with that, but it has never bothered me that an expert opnion comes from a dealer ... Lew Lipset's a dealer you know, and I'm sure he wouldn't have been able to write the Enclopedia of Baseball Cards without having bought and sold and traded a ton of cards.

You can find a few people with conflicts of interest who can give you an accurate answer, and several million with no conflicts of interest who can give you the wrong one. Your family reverend may be as pure as the driven snow, but that doesn't mean you want him judging the authenticity of your Babe Ruth autographed ball.

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Old 12-04-2004, 09:13 PM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: Julie

I'll have to go root through the wastebasket. These things are becoming a Travesty of Errors...

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  #10  
Old 12-04-2004, 09:27 PM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: Joe P.

This message has been edited by hankron on Dec 3, 2004 3:50 AM
This message has been edited by hankron on Dec 3, 2004 3:41 AM
This message has been edited by hankron on Dec 3, 2004 3:08 AM
This message has been edited by hankron on Dec 3, 2004 2:53 AM
This message has been edited by hankron on Dec 3, 2004 2:36 AM

This message has been edited by hankron on Dec 3, 2004 3:09 PM
This message has been edited by hankron on Dec 3, 2004 3:02 PM
This message has been edited by hankron on Dec 3, 2004 2:56 PM
This message has been edited by hankron on Dec 3, 2004 2:45 PM
This message has been edited by hankron on Dec 3, 2004 2:39 PM
*
*
Is it a seismograph of your thought patterns?

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Old 12-04-2004, 09:43 PM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: Elliot

Joe, I think David's record is 7, not the 10 you credited him with. Maybe if he started rubbing some cream on his fingers.....

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Old 12-04-2004, 09:45 PM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: hankron

The first post is the base coat, next comes the sky and grass, ... If things get too out of hand, I stick in a distracting picture of Gia Carangi or Jean Shrimpton, hoping people will bleep over the text altgether.

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Old 12-04-2004, 09:51 PM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: hankron

The above post is to prove that I can actually post without going back and editing it. God bless methidone.

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Old 12-04-2004, 11:08 PM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: Joe P.

Self serving 30 second commercials are two different animals.

Elliot, did you say seven? --

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  #15  
Old 12-08-2004, 04:17 PM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: deleted

I just wasted one hour of my life reading through all of this (that I will never get back) to find that there are so many people with nothing better to do then bad mouth and attack other's. American Memorabilia really has nothing to defend. They were viciously attacked over their old judge proofs a while ago. But to all of you experts, they went overboard to prove their items were good. Now, some of you self proclaimed experts, the folks that put bidded on those proofs at least put their money where their mouth's are, you guys are still bitching? Why?

Now its another auction and a new item and it's American Memorabilia and you guys are right back again, except this time you are all bat experts. It's strange because I have not seen or recognized any of your names signed to a legal document regarding authenticity.

About Dave Bushing, if he was so bad, would every auction house under the sun have him authenticate their bats and gloves? He's human too, if he makes a mistake and is proven wrong, then the Auction House should stand by what they sell and take back the item with a full refund. I think an honest house will do that.

About Decal Bats; Why is this particular bat making such a fuss, we all know Louisville Slugger made them, we've seen them in auctions, describing use. One of you say they were never used, That is not so, there are documented photos of Cobb at the plate with a decal bat. How do you explain this, the photo does not lie, so there is your proof.

In fact, Lelands Auctions, in their June 4 & 5, 1998, Golden Age Auction, had a Ty Cobb Decal Bat, that they too described as "some light use throughout." the key word is "USE."

So, if you are going to be experts, which I am not, at least do the research and back your claims with proof. See I did.

About American Memorabilia: I am not a big collector, but I do collect items that I carefully select and are one of a kind items. I browsed the American Memorabilia catalogs and I was extremely impressed with the fact that the majority of the items offered in their auctions, do come with multiple letters and documents of authenticity. They are careful and they are doing a fine job with authenticators i.e. PSA/DNA, SCD, STEINER, ASI, etc.

I must confess that I did enjoy this multi-billion dollar industry when it was just a "hobby!"

Happy Xmas

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Old 12-08-2004, 04:48 PM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: hankron

Please post the photo of Cobb at the plate with a decal bat.

On a side note, I recently bought a kitchen table that was advertised in the ad as having "some light use throughout" .... I'm no expert on the subject, so would wear have come from Ty Cobb or Babe Ruth?

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Old 12-08-2004, 05:00 PM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: dennis



i love this quote from the paper...... Bushing says the whole ordeal has got him to thinking about getting out of the authentication business all together. "It's been nothing but a headache," he says. "You wonder if it's worth it." OK,he bought the bat for $30k then sold it for $350k, even with the commissions & some undisclosed amount of cash out for the henrich family, i would say it was worth it.

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Old 12-08-2004, 05:28 PM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: phil

Ruth played for NY
Cobb played for Detroit

Ruth followed Cobb by a number of years. It's a question with no bearing or substance. Worst of all it' a poor attempt at comedy.


Hey, give Bushing some credit as a businessman. I am a successful businessman and there are those who are jealous about my income and lifestyle. This situation is just "Bushing Bashing."

Rubbish

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Old 12-08-2004, 05:32 PM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: DD

can be found on this post

http://www.network54.com/Forum/thread?forumid=153652&messageid=1100373799&lp=1100498627

I informed Nick of the error regarding the Freedom's War set. He responded the change would be made, but it never was. I know he is a member and friend of this board, and only writes the descriptions, but I am wondering why the error is still present in the description with 1 day to go.

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Old 12-08-2004, 06:17 PM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: hankron

Phil, I beleive you miss, or pretend to miss, the difference between the concepts of "used" and "used by Ty Cobb."

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Old 12-08-2004, 07:07 PM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: phil

Does this go for everything that is game used? Can you place the Babe Ruth bat sold recently that hit the first HR at Yankee Stadium in the Babes hands? Then that leads to the speculation, did it hit the ball?

You see, it can go on, and on...

Here's the challange, can you or anyone proove it wasn't in his hands...

same thing... you can't.

It's a ridiculous argument.

end

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Old 12-08-2004, 08:02 PM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: scgaynor

UptownPhil, exactly what is your position at American Memorabilia?

Let me respond to a few of your quotes.

"They were viciously attacked over their old judge proofs a while ago. But to all of you experts, they went overboard to prove their items were good."

They never proved this at all. They could not even come up with a single name of a knowlegeable person who could authenticate them. In contrast, several people stepped up on this board and voiced their opinion, backed by years of experience dealing in vintage photography.

"Now, some of you self proclaimed experts, the folks that put bidded on those proofs at least put their money where their mouth's are, you guys are still bitching? Why?"

I am not sure if I understand this statment, but I assume you mean that people bid on them so they must be real. If that is the case, That statement is either stupid, or just plain naive.

"About Dave Bushing, if he was so bad, would every auction house under the sun have him authenticate their bats and gloves? He's human too, if he makes a mistake and is proven wrong, then the Auction House should stand by what they sell and take back the item with a full refund. I think an honest house will do that."

I agree, but other than a poorly worded title on the LOA, I don't think that the fault is with Bushing on this one. There is nothing else mentioned in the LOA that would lead anybody to believe that Ty Cobb actually used this bat. Even the A5 grade means that the bat has major problems. It is American Memorabilia that is making the claim that Ty Cobb used this bat and is spinning the information in the LOA to that end. Bushing even admitted in the Newsday article that there is no proof that Ty Cobb was ever within 500 miles of the bat.

"About Decal Bats; Why is this particular bat making such a fuss, we all know Louisville Slugger made them, we've seen them in auctions, describing use. One of you say they were never used, That is not so, there are documented photos of Cobb at the plate with a decal bat. How do you explain this, the photo does not lie, so there is your proof."

Just because a players name is on a bat, does not mean that he used it. In little league I had a Don Mattingly model bat, but I never thought for a second that he actually used it. I know of a photo of Cobb holding a Decal bat, but it is not game action. The photo appears to be a promotional photo of some sort, possibly for use in an equipment catalog. Has anybody ever seen a photo of Cobb in a game using a Decal bat? Anybody? Bueller?

"In fact, Lelands Auctions, in their June 4 & 5, 1998, Golden Age Auction, had a Ty Cobb Decal Bat, that they too described as "some light use throughout." the key word is "USE."

Not used by Cobb, probably by some kid out playing with his father.

"So, if you are going to be experts, which I am not, at least do the research and back your claims with proof. See I did."

Almost everything that you said was wrong, so you may want to go back and do more research.

"Here's the challange, can you or anyone proove it wasn't in his hands..."

That statement is so ridiculous that it leaves me pretty much speechless, so I will end here.

Scott

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Old 12-08-2004, 08:16 PM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: Anonymous

..that decal bats were ever used by players in that era. I'm no memorabilia buff, but had always heard and thought that these were only decorative souveniers sold in stores.

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Old 12-08-2004, 09:31 PM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: Nick Martinez

Gentlemen (and Julie),
I am just getting back from a vacation only to find this lovely thread.

I have to first admit a mistake. When “DD” told me about the problem with the Freedoms War write up, I promptly changed it. I unfortunately did not press the Update button that would have made the change complete. I never looked at it again. I made the change tonight and informed the bidder.

I will have pictures posted of Cobb using a decal bat on more than one occasion soon. Further details on why it is exactly what we state it is will follow with the pictures. (Just a note, I did not write the hokey part about it being a “peach”. )

I have collected and dealt with bats since my days as a batboy (20 years). Therefore, I do have some experience. When most collectors hear “Decal Bat”, they are thinking of the store model bats. The bat we are auctioning is of game specifications.

Aside from my opinion, we find the very best authenticators for our items. Dave Bushing is widely considered the best in the business. He inspected & measured the bat and deemed it game used.

American Memorabilia does everything we can to protect our customers. We have done so in this case.

In regards to Scotts bashing, I know you have a business to protect. I do caution you to be careful when dishing out, you may have to take it!

Regards,
Nick Martinez
American Memorabilia.

PS: We have discussed the Old Judge Proofs to death. It is over, the people spoke and I have nothing left to add.

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Old 12-08-2004, 09:59 PM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: phil

Scott:

For your information I'm an attorney in New York City, and I have no connections, or interests, with American Memorabilia or any other auction house. Hmmmmm.... Can you make the same statement? Rumor has it that a few auction houses have their "henchmen" out stirring up trouble for their competition.

I really can not understand your passion about this bat, or your blatant attack on this auction house? Your being so defensive, does make one wonder of your interest in this matter, or is there a bigger reason. You lead a full frontal attack on me, yet you approach the Bushing topics so carefully as to not "piss him off." You are so calculated, yet so, so obvious.

the other decal bat I referenced, I couldn't say what type of use was referred to because there wasn't any mention of any authentication and the description was very vague.

Scott, there is a photo of Cobb online at bat during a game, clearly with a Decal Bat and at homeplate! Before you can get so cocky and defensive and order me to "find it!" I'll let you get it! Perhaps you will learn a thing or two. Since you made reference to me as, and i quote: "Almost everything that you said was wrong, so you may want to go back and do more research." Well Scotty, lets see how resourseful you are, show these good people that you are the expert you boast to be.

Here is a challange for you. What was Cobb's "Big 3?"

To the rest of the people participating on this site, I apologize for this, but Scott, turned a defense into an offense and drew first blood.

Phil

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Old 12-08-2004, 10:03 PM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: scgaynor

Nick, the term "bashing" connotes (at least to me) making negative statements that have no basis in fact. Since that is not the case here, I don't believe that it applies.

If you have a problem with the way that I do things, I am fine with discussing it, I can defend myself fine. If I am offering something that is questionable, I want it brought to my attention.

In a way, I am protecting my business because I am trying to make sure that I have customers in the future. If somebody buys an item for $300 or $400 from a trade publication auction that turns out to be bad, they chalk it up as a lesson learned and make sure that they deal with more reputable dealers in the future. But when somebody spends $30,000, $40,000 or $100,000 on a item that has problems, they leave the hobby.

Scott

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Old 12-08-2004, 10:15 PM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: AugustWest

"there is a photo of Cobb online at bat during a game, clearly with a Decal Bat and at homeplate! Before you can get so cocky and defensive and order me to "find it!" I'll let you get it! Perhaps you will learn a thing or two"

........post a link for us "challenged neophite" observers. I looked at your auction and tried "google" but have drawn my usual blank.
I'd love to learn something here except how to argue and nitpick

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Old 12-08-2004, 10:19 PM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: scgaynor

Phil, or whatever your real name is, I find it odd that the first time that you participate on this board is in this thread, hmmm......

I can read between the lines of your "henchman" comment. Very funny, my reasons for defending my position are mentioned in the post above.

I don't have time, or interest, to look for Cobb photos online, just give me the link.

Scott

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Old 12-08-2004, 10:21 PM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: derek

with the incredible amount of sports memorabilia in the marketplace (good and bad), i don't see how you can put the blame for any mistakes (if they truly are so), on auction houses like american memorabilia, who truly makes sincere attempts to only offer items that have been authenticated by industry experts. these individuals, are considered and respected as the foremost authorities, on this particular subject. what more could you ask for than someone whom, at their expense, goes to the top of their trade, to try to get it right. i for one, would rather put my trust in outfits like american memorabilia, who go the extra mile to get opinions from the most respected people in the business, rather than like some of these auction houses, where supposedly they authenticate in house, by their so called experts, but, where all sales are final. is this bat actually game used ty cobb??? i couldn't tell you. have i seen pictures with cobb using a decal bat??? yes, i can say that i truly have. This particular bat??? who knows...
that's why it gets left in the hands of those that have the most information regarding these matters, to help us make that decision.

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Old 12-09-2004, 07:17 AM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: david

the problem here isnt if the bat is a real cobb decal model bat that shows use, but if this bat was in fact USED BY COBB. Showing pictures of cobb with a decal bat does nothing to authentic this bat unless there are markings that can link the two, this is no doubt why bushing has given the bat a A5. the bat is a real ty cobb decal bat from there era but there is absolutely no evidence that cobb actually used this bat in a game besides speculation and hope. unlike the ruth bat which was just auctioned, which by the way comes with an inscription from ruth and well documented provenance as such.

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Old 12-09-2004, 11:30 AM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: DD

In the last Vintage Authentics auction (the one with the Tip Top card lot; sorry Dan) they had a Honus Wagner "game used" decal bat. The description from the catalog indicates it graded SCDA 8, and was certified by Bushing and Knoll. They state that it is from the 1905 era, and predates signature model Louisville Sluggers. Also, "It is a well known fact that players used decal bats as there are photos of Ty Cobb using them and there are decal game used bats in the Hall of Fame as well as Louisville Slugger".

Their web site does not list results to I do not know what it sold for. It is interesting to note that they also reference the still unforeseen Cobb photos. Can anyone confirm the other info about the decal bats in the Hall, or the Louisville Slugger museum?

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Old 12-09-2004, 11:45 AM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: scgaynor

Rumor has it that the Wagner Decal bat was found along with this Cobb bat. That is just want I heard, I can't verify that for sure. I think that there was another bat as well of a different player for a total of 3 bats.

Scott

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Old 12-09-2004, 12:23 PM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: Paul

I have no knowledge of game used bats, so I take no position on this debate. However, I thought I'd pass along this email from American Memorabilia. The original email included a photo that is supposed to show Cobb using a decal bat. The photo won't reproduce in this thread. To me, the photo is inconclusive, but perhaps if seen in person it would clearly show Cobb using a decal bat. Anyhow, here's the email:

Last Day of Auction! Happy Holidays! The earth is no longer flat and yes, they did use decal bats. Never in the almost twenty years in this business have so many pundits written or called on a bat in which we did a letter. Players never used decal bats is the most often heard comment. Of course, this is not based on any actual fact or research, only on preconceived notions from the past. Well, this is simply not true. We have seen photographic evidence of Cobb at the plate in an action shot, not posed, holding a decal bat. In addition, David Hunt saw one in the Louisville archives while searching for the recent auction. The photo we had was actually the glass negative and it sold in a huge collection of plates in the Mastronet auction in 2002. To date, only two such Cobb decal bats have emerged that we deemed to be “professional” models along with one Honus Wagner. Both of these players were the earliest two endorsees for Louisville and there was no standard way of issuing game bats to players i.e. name on barrel, etc at that time. They predated the introduction of a store catalog model numbers i.e. 40 T.C. or even the 125 models. They were hand turned with lathe marks on both ends, were made to spec ( or noted otherwise if not). They also pre date any shipping records. They were all in the odd half-inch length, not the even measured variety offered by Louisville in the early catalogs. These are simple facts, not conjecture nor wishful thinking. With the proliferation of hundreds of decal store models with the 40-model number stamped on them, where are all the hand turned pre model number examples? As for the term “game used”, it is a generic term used to describe pro model bats that show use. The overall grade of the bat then helps the potential buyer determine to what length he must take that “ leap of faith” as to whether a bat made in the style and manner ordered by a player was actually used by that particular player. The only way to determine that a bat made to a player’s specs was actually ever used by that player are as follows; 1. Solid provenance from a player, staff, or family (The same criteria used by the Hall of Fame). 2. A proliference of player characteristics unique to that player such as the distinct diamond pattern tape job on a Duke Snider gamer. 3. Side writing as returned to the factory for duplication. Just because you own a Roy Campanella game bat that matches all factory records and shows use, in all actuality, it could have been used by a team mate or another player unless it exhibits one of the above listed traits. We were even challenged as to whether it was prudent to use the term “ Game Used” when listing a game bat with use. This term has been a common policy for years and used in just about every auction and ad selling game used bats. The term was used to describe a professional model bat made to a players specs showing game use. It’s just a matter of semantics but if the term seems misleading, then maybe it needs changing. It has always seemed to us that the term simply meant a game used bat attributed to the player for whom it was made and that the higher A9 and A10 grades were the closest one could get as to absolute certainty that the bat was actually used by that player and that in most cases, anything less would constitute at least some sort of leap of faith albeit with access to factory records after 1930, the leap is not all that great in most cases. One newspaper columnist from New York stated that he would not own any game used piece of equipment short of a photo match showing that piece actually in the player’s hands. Given his strict criteria, he would never own anything and the Hall of Fame would have to close its doors since most of their items come from the families and lack photographs of the players holding or wearing such items. It is easy to see why he is not a collector as he has no actual idea of what it entails and his only interest in this hobby is digging up controversy using only the information supplied to him that helps his end results. And while we are on the subject of some recent findings, let’s delve into the subject of team ordered and index bats. John Taube and I have been deciphering this information for the last six months and have made several conclusions using fact based research and common sense. For years, we saw Ted Williams model O1 mid 50’s gamers coming directly from players yet personal factory records indicated only one such bat shipped to Ted in 1955 yet at least a dozen examples had surfaced Then there were the Jimmie Foxx model F3’s , the S100 Pee Wee Ree

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Old 12-09-2004, 02:35 PM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: phil

In an interview with Robin Ventura, ESPN magazine reported that Ventura uses other players bats. Not only those of his teammates but those of opposing teams. Ventura, in his own admittance, stated that he obtained bats from other players and uses them. So you can't even today place a players bat in that particular players hands. So did Cal Ripkin use that bat... or did Robin Ventura?

The article was supported with a picture of Ventura posed in the Yankee clubhouse with a few dozen bats that belonged to other players, that he actively uses.

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Old 12-09-2004, 04:33 PM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: Paul

I believe Mickey Mantle once grabbed a pitcher's bat, while drunk, and hit a home run. So Robin Ventura is not the only one.

By the way, I own the pitcher's bat that Mantle used. Looks like an ordinary pitcher's bat, but trust me.

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Old 12-09-2004, 04:50 PM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: hankron

First I am not a bat expert, am not pretending to be one and do not know what type of bat Cobb or Wagner or Fred Lynn used.

However, I hope someone's logic seriously isn't that, since in lots of other cases you can't tell who used what bat or what type of bat a player used, that justifies saying a Hall of Famer used a particular bat when you don't know who used the bat.

You either know who used that bat or you don't. And if you don't know you don't know.

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Old 12-09-2004, 05:19 PM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: hankron

"Attempts at authentication of rare, esoteric and previously unknown objects will often require great skill and time and do not always result in positive identification. There are many objects in museums where the idenification haven’t moved beyond speculation. Many descriptions of art will include phrases such as ‘Attributed to…” and “It is believed…” In the end, the examiner is not omniscient and only gives his or her best opinion. While we would all like to be able to positively identify all items all the time, even the world’s greatest experts will sometimes say, “I have no idea.” Far from being a sign of weakness, it is the expert who is well aware of his or her limitations in knowlwedge. It is the non-expert who claims to have all the answers."

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Old 12-09-2004, 05:31 PM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: phil

I think this topic can finally be put to rest.

R.I.P.

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Old 12-09-2004, 08:40 PM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: Scott

Anyone can tell that the supplied photo doesn't really show anything, and as David pointed out - even if proof existed that Cobb actually batted with decal bats, there's no evidence that he used this one.

What it all comes down to is that for this sort of thing to sell as described, even with "provenance", the buyer has to REALLY want to believe it's something that it might not be. This is true of autographed balls, no-hitter gloves, etc. People who collect this sort of thing are in a crap-shoot most of the time, and surely they must know it. It's what got Dorothy back to Kansas and how Peter Pan got those kids to jump out the window.

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Old 12-10-2004, 02:53 AM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: hankron

The description of a bat doesn't have to be an all or nothing situation. If a bat is the type Cobb used, came from his estate or the Tiger's batboy and has relevant use/markings, one can say, as applies, "It is very much possible this bat was used by Cobb in a MLB game" or "There's a good chance" or even "We cannot be 100 percent sure, but our auction experts beleive this bat was used by Cobb in a MLB game."

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Old 12-10-2004, 03:37 AM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: Joe P.

UptownPhil52: December 8 2004, 6:17 PM

so many opinions, so many experts?

"I just wasted one hour of my life reading through all of this (that I will never get back) to find that there are so many people with nothing better to do then bad mouth and attack other's."
*
*
Since then, he has wasted countless of our hours with his cheap imitation of Perry Mason.
Raymond Burr must be turning over in his grave.

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Old 12-10-2004, 04:35 AM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: dennis

is right on target!

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Old 01-08-2005, 12:22 PM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: Robert Plancich

I have been doing additional research on this issue and one thing that is certain is that Cobb never and I mean never used a bat shorter than 34 inches. Dave Bushing the so-called "world's foremost expert" and Troy Kinunen, Director of Authentication for SCDA certainly should know and/or at least be aware of this fact. The bat that sold was 33 1/2 inches!

Also, it is my understanding that the individual that consigned the bat in AMI's auction purchased the bat from Dave Bushing as a Ty Cobb game-used bat. Therefore, when the bat was submitted to AMI Bushing had to "cover his tracks" so to speak and authenticate this bat as being used by Ty Cobb. Although if you contact Dave Bushing and ask him the question he will probably give you the same answer that he gave Michael O'Keeffe of the New York Daily News and that was that he (Bushing0 wasn't claiming it was a bat that Ty Cobb used; instead, he is actually saying that it's a used Ty Cobb bat and that he doesn't know who used it.

This brings us to the price that the bat sold for. My information says that this type of bat has a market value of about $2,000.00 being sold as a decal bat without the game-use by Cobb. The bat went for something like $37,000.00 with it being authenticated as a game-used bat used by Cobb. So that pretty little LOA added $35,000.00 to the price of this bat because if Dave Bushing says "it's real" then "it's real."

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Old 01-08-2005, 03:06 PM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: Scott

Robert - the disturbing thing about that situation is the photo "evidence" that was presented (showing the 'decal'). The auction house wants so badly for that photo to show a decal that I believe they are positive that it does so, and that it's obvious to all...but it isn't...obvious.

To me this doesn't say anything bad about the auction house, only that they are human: they want very badly for that bat to be something that it may not be, and that's how we all behave to some extent - to me the evidence doesn't show that it IS NOT a Cobb gamer, but it also doesn't show that it IS.

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Old 01-08-2005, 04:52 PM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: Robert Plancich

Sorry - I hit the "Respond" button twice!

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Old 01-08-2005, 04:53 PM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: Robert Plancich

Scott - I agree with you to some extent. At this time I would have to say that there is evidence for both sides of the arguement. However, since there exists this "reasonable doubt" then why was a LOA issued at all on this particular bat. Dave Bushing has been billed as the "world's foremost expert", these are the questions and issues that some one of his expertise should be answering and/or addressing before he issues a LOA and certainly after the LOA has been issued. What does it say about him, his knowledge and SCDA when he and Troy Kinunen absolutely refuse to answer any questions on an item that they have claimed to authentic and game-used by Ty Cobb? What about the collector that purchased this bat? More importantly, what does their attitude and behavior regarding questions raised about this bat say about all the other bats that they have authenticated?

I have been going through some past auction catalogs from various auction houses and Dave Bushing & Dan Knoll have authenticated batting gloves, baseball gloves, jerseys, uniforms (baseball/football), football helmuts, warmup jackets, baseball cleats, baseball caps, bats from every manufacturer, hockey sticks, etc., - one would have to assume that these two individuals have a tremendous amount of knowledge in order to be able to authenticate such a wide varity of items from the various major sports. It would seem to me that they could answer these rather simple questions right off the top of their head if what has been written about them is true.

I have a book written by Dave Bushing titled "Sports Equipment" and on the back cover it states that "Dave Bushing is considered to be one of the leading pricing authorities on vintage sports equipment. He has authored several books, including two on baseball gloves, and one on evaluating and storing bats. He also co-authored a book on Spalding bats 1908-'38. His company, Vintage Sports Equipment, has supplied props for movies such as 'A League of their Own', 'Rookie of the Year' and most recently 'Cobb'. He also writes the Q & A column for several leading sports collectibles magazines." He certainly has all of the credentials for an "expert" and judging from this "bio" it appears he knows quite a bit about Cobb, or at least the movie. I just don't get it - why is he so afraid to answer these questions. What has he got to hide - I know what he has to lose!

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Old 01-08-2005, 06:59 PM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: dennis

why should they have to answer your questions? after all no one else seems to care? it's old news. if people are willing to believe without or with little facts, so be it. so they missed a few.he's the expert. they are only human. there is no basis of a conflict of interest.you can't prove it is not. if he says its real.. its real.Hey, give Bushing some credit as a businessman. This situation is just "Bushing Bashing." stalker.......just thought i'd get a bunch of peoples comments into 1 paragraph so no one has to respond to this.

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Old 01-08-2005, 06:59 PM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: Scott

I completely agree that COA's and LOA's shouldn't be written without adequate evidence.

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Old 01-08-2005, 07:20 PM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: Julie

We have at the Asian Art Museum, in an exhibit callrd "Fakes, Copies and Question Marks," a small painting of a prince visiting a guru, painted in India--quite recently. There is a (very small-print) LOA with it, saying, "this is a copy of an ancient Indian painting; buy it, in 150 years, it, too will be an ancient Indian painting." The painting is surrounded by very old Persian writing, as Indian paintings often are--writing MUCH older than the copy inside it, and having nothing top do with it (I'm told).

Would anyone who recognized the Persian writing (without being able to read it), bother with the small print in the LOA?

Plus ca change, plus la meme chose.
The more things change, the more they stay the same.

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Old 01-08-2005, 07:32 PM
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Default Ty Cobb/Bushing/SCDA/Game-Used Decal Bat

Posted By: dennis

julie is the loa from bushing???

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