1957 Willie Mays New York Giants Game Worn Jersey from His Last Game at the Polo Grounds (MEARS 8)
This is a historic jersey in so many ways. First, it was game worn by Willie Mays, one of the most dynamic, talented and charismatic players ever to don a uniform. The prototype of what is now known as a "five-tool" player, the Say Hey Kid hit 660 homers with a .302 lifetime average, led the league in steals four times, and his prowess in center field was second to none, with 12 Gold Glove awards. Second, there are only two authentic Willie Mays New York Giants jerseys known and this is one of them. Third, it is likely from the very last NY Giants game ever at the Polo Grounds, a landmark stadium that played host at various times to the Yankees and Mets as well is its primary tenants, the Giants, until they moved to San Francisco after the 1957 season. The lettering and numbers are all original, with "GIANTS" stitched across the front in black-on-orange twill and "24" on the back in the same style. MacGregor size 42 tag is in the collar with "Mays" sewn on a swatch below, and inside the front tail is Set 1 1957 flag tag. This masterpiece shows tons of use, as some of the letters on the front - although 100 percent original - have been re-anchored with thread to stabilize the jersey's condition, and also some fabric was added to the collar and shoulder areas on the inside of the jersey to stabilize those areas. Even with all the use, the jersey has great eye appeal. In 1957, the Giants had a home jersey made by MacGregor and a home jersey made by McAuliffe. Film footage of the last game at the Polo Grounds shows Mays wearing a MacGregor uniform as is evidenced by the distinct font of the numerals, thus, it is highly likely that this is the jersey that Mays was wearing for the last ever NY Giants game at the Polo Grounds, a very historic event. Included is a complete MEARS letter with in-depth analysis by Dave Grob, graded MEARS A8 with a point deducted for condition and another for staining. Completing the picture, it is signed on the front in 8/10 black Sharpie by Mays, who was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1979 and is rightly among just a handful of players that warrant discussion as being the best to ever play the game.