Catcher's Mitt is endorsed with Pitcher's Name, why?

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Catcher's Mitt is endorsed with Pitcher's Name, why?

Postby 3dgt » May 4th, 2021, 3:07 pm

First timer here — a quick intro. I was at a flea market and saw this old glove, a catcher's mitt. I just liked the look of it. Never ever thought about collecting baseball gloves but now I think I may have opened the floodgates of a new collection. Last time I played baseball was Little League sixty-five years ago. I found this website and fell down the rabbit hole for half a day researching this glove.

The catcher’s mitt is about 32” in circumference. It is endorsed with the signature of “Al Grabowski” and stamped “Genuine Cowhide”. I looked up Al Grabowski and he was a pitcher for two seasons in the majors, 1929-1930. I found another catcher’s mitt with a pitcher’s name on it, Don Williams, one season, 1963.

Is there a reason for a pitcher’s name to be on a catcher’s mitt? Also, each of these players was only in the majors for one or two seasons and yet they had a glove named for them.

I'm just getting started so any information would be appreciated or point me in the right direction.

3dgt
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Re: Catcher's Mitt is endorsed with Pitcher's Name, why?

Postby cbrandis » May 12th, 2021, 2:02 pm

Catcher's mitts have a long list of non-catcher endorsements, from Ruth to Hornsby to Cuyler. Companies wanted to cash in on some famous (and not so famous) ballplayers.
On other occasions, players got an endorsement due to the fact that they were local players (see Nokona players list for some examples of Texas League endorsed gloves/mitts).
Good chance you mitt was made by J.C. Higgins (Sears), sometime in the mid-1930s, maybe 1935-36. Nice find.
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