A piece of baseball history is up for auction on August 5. Shown above is an early Louisville Slugger baseball bat. How early? It was used in 1897 by Hall of Fame player Adrian "Cap" Anson to get his final career hit, number 3,435. Anson was the first major league player to get 3,000 career hits and was one of the first great stars of the sport. The bat features 145 carved notches on the handle, reportedly made by Anson himself to improve his grip. It's interesting to compare this beautiful bat to today's Louisville Sluggers.
"This bat was owned by the Anson family for over a century. His great-grandson sold it in 2006 to an anonymous buyer, and it is being offered now along with the family's notarized letter of provenance along with certification by PSA/DNA Authentication Services," said Chris Ivy, Director of Sports Collectibles at Heritage Auction Galleries, the firm that will conduct the public auction during the National Sports Collectors Convention in Baltimore and online, August 5, 2010. The bat is 36 inches long, weighs 47 ounces and is stamped with the first version of the J.F. Hillerich & Son logo, indicating it was produced in the early years of the Louisville Slugger brand between 1894 and 1897. It is estimated to sell for over $100,000.