Sunday, July 19, 2009

The auction - part 1

I spend about 6 hours at the MeiGray Shea Memorabilia Warehouse in Bridgewater, NJ, yesterday for the live auction of Shea Stadium's leftover memorabilia. Unfortunately, I had to leave a little before 4pm, and the auction probably ran past 6pm.

I'll break this down into several posts. First I break down the items that were available. I am including my photo album from looking around at the memorabilia. I did learn that some of what was made available since September came out of storage at Shea, so these were non-recent items that maybe you didn't recognize. There were also a lot of things from the hidden levels (like the press level) that most people didn't see. Some of the photos were very recent (last season).

The items:
There were lots of pictures. Some smaller prints (in frames), some larger ones. A few that were large black and whites, and other that were smaller, with most in color. There were even some older photos that really really pre-date the Mets (I'm not real sure who these were, but I thought that the Hall of Fame should have them more than any fan/collector). There were "photos" printed on wooden board, kind of like a photo being printed right on the frame. There were large reprints of some of the old year book covers. A few photos of Shea, and a lot of players posing or action shots. There were some gigantic prints of some big moments/players in Mets history.

There were vinyl hanging banners of players/moments in Mets history. Some were prints of photographs, and some were the promotional banners. Not all of them were out on display for us to see, even though we were bidding on them. There were even more in a back room. Some that were out were probably 12' x 10' tall/wide. There were some flags, including (one of the) 2000 NL Champions flag from the CF flagpole at Shea. A few boxes of old American flags and old football flags from the Jets days at Shea.

Tucked away on a shelf on the far side were the large Topps baseball cards that we saw announcing the lineup above the RF ticket window at Shea. Piles of them. I wasn't around for their bidding. There were also large cardboard-like prints that looked like they were part of the RF/LF and press box facade murals of Mets history, except they weren't the right shape/size.

They had a few of the carts that scorecards and yearbooks were sold from. There were maybe half a dozen of the rolling Roosevelt Ave. Pub food carts. In the back, and I don't know if/when those were sold/auctioned, there were several hand-held Nathan's Hot Dog carts and even some of the grills and holding trays from the concession stands.

There was a display of about 2 dozen lockers - both Mets and Visitors. Some were labeled as having belonged to certain player(s), and some were not. There were many many bricks - some individually wrapped and boxed, and others out for us to touch that were different shapes and sizes, some crumbling.

They had lots of foul poll. At least four different 25' sections. Plus a bunch of cut up 1' and 2' sections. They had one foul poll screen in tact (ready to be reattached to the foul poll itself) and the other foul poll screen loose and rolled up on the floor. There were a few of the railings from the Loge, Mezzanine, and Upper Decks and a couple hundered of the "elbow" pieces from the Field Level boxes.

There were about 100 of the wide ramp signs that hung down from the exit ramps at Shea (one side points to whichever level you're entering and the other is Mr. Met saying goodbye). There were also about 100 cut section signs. At one point, the signs were sold whole (I bought one in September). For some time, they've been auctioned/sold in "cut" form to be easier to transport and store.

They had piles and piles of the outfield and barrier walls. The blue padding. Some with parts of an advertisement. There was one complete OF wall section (6 panels) that was just one advertisement (not even any blue). There were also light pods and LED pods from the Shea scoreboard.

They had a couple sets of seats from the Citi Field Preview Center that was in Shea last season. A few cushioned "suite seats" and a couple pairs of the regular seats. There were a couple sets of seats from the Shea press level too. There were even a few prints and banners that depicted an artists's rendition of Citi Field that we probably saw at Shea.

There were a few other things. Look through my photos and you'll get the idea. More to come later as a I review the how the bidding went and some of the problems that came up as well as my thoughts.

Part 2 - the setup
Part 3 - the problems