According to an Oklahoma newspaper, an Iowa family has earned $216,000 dollars at auction from baseballs signed by New York Yankees legend Babe Ruth.
The auction was conducted by Heritage Auctions, and included eight baseballs signed by Ruth during a trip to Spencer, Iowa in 1948. The baseballs sold at auction for $216,000 on Friday to an unnamed memorabilia investor.
One of the balls that was in almost perfect condition sold for $77,000, while several others sold for $13,000.
The moral of the story here, folks, is to never underestimate the value of a signature, especially one as rare as Babe Ruth’s. While an item on the surface may not look like much, it could in fact be the find of a lifetime.
Just ask kids of the 50s whose parents threw out all their Mickey Mantle cards. I’m sure they’d be happy to provide you with a story or two.
While trying to differentiate between items that are genuine and were actually signed by the famous athlete, versus those that are knock-offs and not original items is certainly an arduous and tender process, it’s well worth it in many instances.
Memorabilia collectors make a meager living, but those who have an “eye” for originals can do much more than that.
What’s funny is that on occasion those that really strike it rich are just regular guys like you and I with no real “insider” knowledge of the process, business, or trade of memorabilia dealing.
That’s just fine.
The little guy deserves a win now and again anyway.
Kris Hughes is the College Football Network Manager for Rant Sports and a member of the Football Writers Association of America. If you enjoy his takes, you can follow Kris on Twitter, check out his personal Facebook page, or stop by his personal Tumblr page.