Wes Ferrell began his big league career in 1927, the same year this card was signed. Such signatures from this early in his career are exceedingly difficult to find. A six-time 20-game winner, Ferrell twice posted 25 wins in a season.
At bat Ferrell was a menace, hitting 38 homers – the Major League record for pitchers. Many believe he has a legitimate resumé for Cooperstown.
After his big league career was over, Wes returned to the minor leagues and led the league in home runs once and batting twice
Ferrell’s older brother Rick is a Hall of Fame catcher. An odd choice for Cooperstown, Rick was elected by the Veterans Committee in 1984. A career .281 hitter, he finished with 1,692 hits, 28 homers, and 734 runs batted in.
Another brother George was a former minor league batting champion who played in the bushes from 1926 to 1945. Though he never made it to the big leagues, George batted over .300 in 13 minor league seasons and .321 for his career that featured 2,876 hits.
This autograph above is from the Heilbroner Baseball Bureau. The statistical service was founded by the manager of the 1900 Cardinals, Louis Heilbroner.
The Bureau was the first commercial statistical bureau dedicated entirely to baseball and was founded in 1909. On the left side of the card Wes has noted his age as 19. That dates the piece to 1927.
These cards provide highly-desirable early examples of autographs from players in the infancy of their careers.