Official Okua & Co. 'Royal Match Ball' baseball signed in fountain pen on the sweet spot by Babe Ruth, and on the side panels by 15 fellow members of the 1934 'Tour of Japan' barnstorming squad, including: Lou Gehrig, Jimmie Foxx, Lefty Gomez, Earl Averill, Connie Mack, Lefty O'Doul, Mo Berg, Earl Whitehill, Joe Cascarella, Rabbit Warstler, Clint Brown, Frank Hayes, Eric McNair, trainer Doc Ebling, and umpire John Quinn. In very good to fine condition, with light scuffing and soiling, an overall light coating of shellac, and fading to some signatures; Ruth's signature is light in places but entirely legible, and Gehrig's signature is as bold as the day it was signed. Accompanied by full letters of authenticity from PSA/DNA and JSA.
By 1934 the game of baseball had spread to the Far East and a baseball tour was arranged by Judge Kenesaw Mountain Landis and Benjamin Shibe to demonstrate the game in Japan and the Philippines. Although reluctant at first, Ruth was convinced to join the Major League Winter Tour of Japan in 1934 by a Japanese newspaper man who showed Ruth a Japanese sign that read, "Ruth Coming!" The team consisted of 14 American Leaguers with Connie Mack as manager. The highly successful 17 game tour was highlighted by Ruth's 14 home runs, but he was struck out three times in one game by 17-year old pitcher Eiji Sawamura, who quickly became a national hero. Further, catcher Moe Berg, who was fluent in Japanese, was actually undercover as a photographer for the U.S. Government in addition to his baseball duties. Over 200,000 fans turned out to witness the four games played in Japan. A great team-signed memento from this famous international trip.
Terms and abbreviations used in our descriptions.