For the fishing village of Lindenhurst, Long Island, this 1930 exhibition game with Ruth and Gehrig (avid fishermen themselves) was regarded as the greatest sporting event in local history—and it remains so to this day. First, the Yankee legends were honored with a parade fit for kings. Then, more than 4,000 star-struck spectators gathered at Meridale Baseball Park for a contest between their Lindenhurst ball club (managed by Babe's fishing buddy Addie Klein) and the Ruth/Gehrig all-star squad.
What ultimately stole all the headlines was the Bambino's ninth-inning moon shot, reported here by the Lindenhurst Star newspaper: "The second pitch was shoulder-high, and that's where Ruth likes 'em. He took a healthy swing and 'crack' went the bat as the ball went sailing out over the rightfielder's head! The ball landed just in back of the Old Homestead Inn, corner Wellwood Avenue and Montauk Highway, and was said to be the longest drive ever seen on the home grounds...The most famous ballplayer in the world just grinned as he trotted at a slow pace around to third base where he halted, not wishing to continue on to home plate, apparently satisfied with the triple." (In addition to Ruth's gesture of sportsmanship and humility, Gehrig is said to have donated his financial compensation to the Lindenhurst team.)
According to the accompanying notarized 2009 LOA, a lucky fella named William Charles Crockett wrestled the ball away from his peers and was given two choices—either trade the ball in for entrance to the game, or wait until afterward to have it autographed. Crockett's son Gerald attests to the latter. Thus, we are proud to present this dual-signed treasure, showcasing the strong fountain-pen signatures of Babe Ruth (sweet spot "8") and Lou Gehrig (side panel "7"). The soiled, scuffed, red-and-blue-seamed game ball carries a proprietary stamping for Nat Strong, a prominent organizer of New York barnstorming games and an important figure in Negro League history. Full LOA from PSA/DNA. This item has a reserve (estimated value $30,000-$40,000).