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Lot # 729: Circa 1919 Heinie Groh Game Used Bottle Bat (ex-Charlie Sheen Collection & PSA GU 9)

Category: Baseball Equipment

Starting Bid: $500.00

Bids: 24 (Bid History)

Time Left: Auction closed
Lot / Auction Closed

This lot is closed. Bidding is not allowed.

Item was in Auction "2024 Winter Classic",
which ran from 2/25/2024 10:00 AM to
3/16/2024 10:00 PM

Presented is a circa 1919 Heinie Groh game used "bottle bat." Groh, whose given first name was Henry, was called 'Heinie," as were many other German Americans named Henry in his time. (Groh was born in 1889) Groh was mainly a third baseman and he became a superb fielder. Heinie played 16 seasons in the Major Leagues: New York Giants (1912-13 & 1922-26), Cincinnati Reds (1913-21), Pittsburgh Pirates (1927). When Groh first came up to the Major Leagues with John McGraw's Giants, the legendary manager suggested the use of the bottle bat for Groh, since at 5'6" and 158 lbs, Groh was a small man with very small hands, and McGraw believed that a bottle bat, shaped like a milk bottle with a very narrow handle and a huge barrel and very little space between them, would help Groh. McGraw's reasoning was that Groh's small hands could grip the narrow handle more easily than a bigger handle, and the huge barrel would make up for the weight loss from a standard handle and thus provide the weight and size for contact. The bat worked like magic for Groh. He batted a career .292. From 1917-21, he hit between .298 and .331 each season. Groh led the NL in OBP in both 1917 (.385) and 1918 (.395), and in 1919 Groh batted .310 and led the Senior Circuit in OPS (.823) and then was a part of the "Black Sox" World Series when Groh's Reds defeated the Chicago White Sox, who threw some of the games and the Series. The offered bottle bat has a length of 33.0" and a weight of 38.4 ounces. The uncracked hickory is extremely hard wood, with a standard finish. The label reads, in part, "Louisville Slugger 125 Hillerich & Bradsby." Etched into the barrel is "GROH." Included with the Groh bottle bat is a September 12, 2006, Letter of Authenticity written by Josh Evans, founder and former owner of Lelands Auctions, which reads, "To Whom It May Concern, This 1919 Heinie Groh bat is game used and authentic. Most importantly, it is from the collection of actor Charlie Sheen. I personally sold the lot to Sheen about 15 years ago. I bought it back this past year & it is now in the collection of Cincinnati area collector John Gennantonio. It is guaranteed." The bat comes with a PSA/DNA Letter of Grading and Authenticity, one which shows the PSA/DNA certification as 1B31277 and the bat grade as PSA GU 9. This game used bottle bat provides a wonderful remembrance of Groh, a very popular star who will always be identified with his unusual and highly effective bottle bat.

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