Well, it all started when I was eight years old. I went to try out for the Little League, and they had a Yankee bat boy contest. Well, girls couldn't participate, so I made up a name. I put "Jimmy Lotsie." So when they called my house, my mother answered the phone. They said, "Oh, your son Jimmy just won the Yankee bat boy contest." And my mother started to laugh. She said, "Well, I don't have a son Jimmy, but it's my daughter Nancy." So when they found out, they were like, "Wow, we've got to do this, you know, make her the honorary bat girl." So they said to me, "Who's your favorite Yankee?" And I said, "Oh, Mickey Mantle." And it just so happened that Mickey Mantle came to speak to me.
And obviously you two became friends.
Oh, yes, yes.
Here you are giving him a peck on the cheek.
And I had asked him, "Oh, Mickey, can you hit a home run for me?" He said, "Well, I can't promise you anything." I said, "That's okay." And he hit a home run, and he came over to me, he said, "Here, Nancy, here's my bat." And then, a few weeks later, I get this autographed picture in the mail-- "To Nancy, the cutest bat boy we have ever had, Your pal, Mickey Mantle."
It's incredible. I was so excited to see this. This is such a wonderful story. This happened in 1963.
You really can't get a better bat than this-- a home run bat, this kind of documentation. Here you are with the Mick, here you are in Life magazine. I think with all this backup documentation, this fantastic photo, at auction, I would expect a bat like this to go for about $35,000. It's truly a fantastic piece-- one of the best pieces I've seen on this show.
Thank you! Thank you. Yes, I mean, my memories are awesome.
Executive producer Marsha Bemko shares her tips for getting the most out of ANTIQUES ROADSHOW.
Value can change: The value of an item is dependent upon many things, including the condition of the object itself, trends in the market for that kind of object, and the location where the item will be sold. These are just some of the reasons why the answer to the question "What's it worth?" is so often "It depends."
Note the date: Take note of the date the appraisal was recorded. This information appears in the upper left corner of the page, with the label "Appraised On." Values change over time according to market forces, so the current value of the item could be higher, lower, or the same as when our expert first appraised it.
Context is key: Listen carefully. Most of our experts will give appraisal values in context. For example, you'll often hear them say what an item is worth "at auction," or "retail," or "for insurance purposes" (replacement value). Retail prices are different from wholesale prices. Often an auctioneer will talk about what she knows best: the auction market. A shop owner will usually talk about what he knows best: the retail price he'd place on the object in his shop. And though there are no hard and fast rules, an object's auction price can often be half its retail value; yet for other objects, an auction price could be higher than retail. As a rule, however, retail and insurance/replacement values are about the same.
Verbal approximations: The values given by the experts on ANTIQUES ROADSHOW are considered "verbal approximations of value." Technically, an "appraisal" is a legal document, generally for insurance purposes, written by a qualified expert and paid for by the owner of the item. An appraisal usually involves an extensive amount of research to establish authenticity, provenance, composition, method of construction, and other important attributes of a particular object.
Opinion of value: As with all appraisals, the verbal approximations of value given at ROADSHOW events are our experts' opinions formed from their knowledge of antiques and collectibles, market trends, and other factors. Although our valuations are based on research and experience, opinions can, and sometimes do, vary among experts.
Appraiser affiliations: Finally, the affiliation of the appraiser may have changed since the appraisal was recorded. To see current contact information for an appraiser in the ROADSHOW Archive, click on the link below the appraiser's picture. Our Appraiser Index also contains a complete list of active ROADSHOW appraisers and their contact details and biographies.