NEW ORLEANS (WGNO) — Gear worn by baseball great and late-Gretna native Mel Ott is up for grabs at the Lelands 2021 Fall Classic Auction, which closes o Dec. 11.
Ott’s game-worn, photo-matched 1931 New York Giants headlines the auction along with what is considered the “Holy Grail” of sports collectibles – a 2000 Playoff Contenders Championship Ticket #144 Tom Brady Autograph.
According to Lelands, “fewer than five jerseys worn by the Hall-of-Fame slugger and one of the greatest hitters in MLB history have survived the passage of time and been offered for public sale.”
In 2017, a similar jersey from the 1945 season in which Ott hit his 500th career home run, garnered a winning bid of $342,000. Ott, who died in 1958 due to injuries he sustained in an automobile accident in Bay St. Louis, Miss., spent his entire 21-year career with the Giants after being drafted in 1925 when he was just 16 years old.
At the time his career ended in 1948, Ott led the National League with 511 homers. A year later, the Giants retired his No. 4 jersey.
Always considered one of the friendliest players in baseball, former Brooklyn Dodgers manager Leo Durocher coined the famous phrase “nice guys finish last” regarding Ott and his bottom-dwelling Giants during the ’46 season.