The helmet worn by future Hall of Fame quarterback Drew Brees in his rookie season with the San Diego Chargers and the last contract signed by Baseball Hall of Famer Roberto Clemente are among the highlighted items in the current auction at Memorabilia Expert Auctions. The auction ends Feb. 8.
The best part about Brees’ helmet is that it has been photo-matched to two regular season games of 2001 – the Oct. 28 game and the Nov. 4 contest. Most importantly, the Nov. 4 game at Kansas City is when Brees made his first appearance in the NFL and threw his first career touchdown.
Photomatching was done by Resolution Photomatching, Real Game Used Authentication (RGU) and Photo-Match.com. Both Resolution and RGU matched it to the Oct. 28 vs. Bills and Nov. 4, 2001 games. In the photo evidence, RGU also had it worn in a preseason game Aug. 25 vs. St. Louis Rams.
The chinstrap is a factor showing the same pattern of rubbed off wear on the Riddell logo as well as the same “9” decal shown in both regular season games (after the pre-season). The Riddell bumper also reflects a frayed portion on the right/left side. Lastly, the end pointed portion of the bolt decal on the left side has a certain bubbling or ripple in it matched by Resolution.
The Brees’ helmet shows terrific wear throughout with impact hit marks, sweat discoloration in the interior etc. The shell is navy, with the Chargers white, navy, and yellow lightning bolt decal logo applied to each side. The facemask is also navy with a Riddell forehead bumper. The chinstrap is still attached to the helmet, and Brees’ number “9” is applied to the upper strap. The back bumper on this helmet reads “Chargers,” while a NFL logo decal, number “9” decal, and an American flag decal are applied to the back of the helmet. The interior padding of this helmet remains intact as well as the special black circular Velcro patch where the quarterback radio would fasten. Overall, a tremendous helmet from a future Football Hall of Famer at the start of his career from his first touchdown no less.
The last contract signed by Pittsburgh Pirates great Roberto Clemente is one for $7,000 “to provide efficient and loyal baseball services.” The two-page contract is not for the Pirates, however, but for the Los Nuevos Senadores Winter Ball Club in Puerto Rico.
Clemente would return to his homeland to play winter ball each offseason. He also managed the club for many years.
The contract was signed in October and filed in 10-20-70.
The highlight is that since the Pittsburgh Pirates already had him signed for the regular season, this is most likely Clemente’s last baseball contracts ever accomplished. Clemente applied his name flawlessly in blue pen (“10”) the same trademark style he had throughout his career below the league President who signed first.”
Also up for auction:
· Presented is a game-used home run baseball from Mickey Mantle in 1953. Coincidentally, it was from Mantle’s 53rd career home run. The provenance is relayed by Larry Sander. He states that ball was retrieved by his Aunt Emma, who was at Comisky Park on Sept. 1, 1953. Virgil Trucks was the pitcher on the mound for the Sox when Mantle smacked it over the fence. Although it wasn’t from her home team, Aunt Emma reached up and grabbed it out of the sky. She knew Mantle would be a special player. It has been in the family’s collection until now. The ball itself is from the proper time period (Harridge ’47-’58) and shows consistent game use/wear throughout. It was also hand marked in blue felt tip in tribute to the wonderful memory.
· A Rafael Nadal game-used custom Nike tennis shirt from Spain’s 2013 Davis Cup campaign COA 100 percent Authentic.
· A Babe Ruth-signed baseball that was obtained by Vern Law, who played 16 seasons for the Pittsburgh Pirates.
· A Terrell Owens game-worn jersey from his football playing days at Benjamin Russell High School
Several non-sports items are also being auctioned.