Sports Auctions Collectibles and Memorabilia

Baseball cards are fun to collect and have proven to be a great investment but there are many other baseball collectibles that are worthy of attention. They range drastically because anything can be collected. Let’s take a look at some of the most popular baseball collectibles and if they make sound investments.

Baseballs

Autographed Baseball MunsonBaseballs are highly collectible and their value relies on the importance of the game, record that was broke, and how likable the player is. In 1999 Mark McGwire’s 70th homerun baseball sold to Todd McFarlane (Spawn creator) for a whopping $2,700,000 plus close to a $305,000 commission to the auction house! In 2001 Barry Bonds broke McGwire’s record with 73 homeruns in a season. McFarlane purchased Bonds’ ball at the same auction for a smaller amount of $450,000. This is proof that the likability of the player and how big of a fan the buyer is depicts what the baseball sells for. We had the pleasure of selling a game used baseball from the first ever All-Star game in 1933 for over $22,000. It is signed by Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Jimmie Foxx, Gabby Hartnett, and Dick Bartell. Ruth’s is especially great due to the fact he announced he would not be signing anything that day and this may be the only autograph availle from that game. Time and time again baseballs prove to be a great investment.

Rings

auction for sports ringsAnyone that collects baseball memorabilia would love to own a championship ring that was owned by their favorite player. Although the general public cannot buy them, they can be found on the market via players, relatives, executives, locker room staff, or someone affiliated to the team. Most teams give out championship rings to office staff, locker room staff, and many others that have worked with the team. Although the “non-player” rings hold the same retail value they will not be worth as much to collectors. Rings from notable players are worth the most. In June of 2007 Casey Stengel’s 1951 NY Yankees World Series ring sold for $180,000. We have sold an array of sports rings at auction, one being David Cone’s 1998 New York Yankees World Series Championship ring that is estimated to sell for $30,000+ dollars. Rings have an inherit value due to the materials used to make them but can be worth much more as an investment if there is a popular players name attached.

Baseball Bats

Baseball BatsGame used baseball bats are similar to game used baseballs because the value depends on who used it, what game it was used in, and was it a defining moment in baseball’s history. Several highly collectible baseball bats were sold in June of 2007 in the same auction that Stengel’s ring was listed in. A 1928 Babe Ruth game used bat sold for $162,000! Two other bats sold for $96,000 (Walter Johnson) and $72,000 (Ted Williams 1955 All-Star H&B Bat). We auctioned off a 1928-1930 Babe Ruth game used bat for over $23,000 dollars. The bat was given to Ty Cobb that wanted it for a friend. Ruth was known to be very generous with his autographs and game used items. Baseball bats are a great investment and would be a great addition to any collection.

Jerseys

Michael Jordan Autographed JerseyMemorable baseball jerseys consistently sell in the thousands to tens of thousands of dollars a piece. A newer jersey, the 2001 Mike Piazza Historic Post 9/11 Home Run Game Used jersey sold for $365,000 in one of our auctions! A 1955 Ted Williams game used Boston Red Sox road jersey with matching pants sold for over $179,000. Look through all of the jerseys we have sold and you will see that they are a great investment.

Baseball Gloves

Baseball gloves are a great investment and can be affordable. We have sold them for prices ranging from $200 to $2,000. Modern gloves are collectible if they were worn by a specific player or used in a specific game and vintage baseball gloves are always desirable. When baseball started players caught barehanded because it was looked down upon to use a glove and was a sign of weakness. In 1875, Charlie Waitt was the first player documented to use gloves in a baseball game. The fingerless baseball glove was born out of necessity because it helped protect the hand while allowing the fingers to hold the ball. Experts in the field say there are less than 10 examples in existence. In 2006 a nineteenth century fingerless glove and the matching full finger glove sold at auction for over $20,000.

Trophies

world-series-baseball-trophyTrophies are not the easiest baseball collectible to find because a lot of accomplished players hold on to them to remember when they dominated the league. Some players sell their trophies to keep up their lavish lifestyle. Jim Palmer, on the other hand, had more noble reasons for selling his Cy Young and Golden Glove award collection. He wanted to help with the education of his grandchildren, his stepson with autism, and give some of the money to charity. In 2012, Palmer auctioned off 3 Cy Young Awards and 2 Golden Glove Awards. Cy Young Awards generally sell for $60,000 to $80,000 apiece and Golden Glove Awards usually sell for much less, around $15,000. While writing this article we are selling at auction a 1988 Los Angeles Dodgers World Series Trophy with a minimum bid of $2,500.

Vintage Pennants

Basketball-PennantVintage baseball pennants are also a good investment and a great item to display. We auctioned off a pair of 1960-1961 New York Yankees Championship Pennants for $300. Most pennants sell in the hundreds of dollars but recently a 1910s Chicago Cubs pennant sold for the incredible amount of approximately $17,000!

 

The key to investing in baseball memorabilia is to purchase items that are game used, were a part of baseball history, and are associated with a notable player. One tip to remember is that you must obtain or already have an authentication certificate for the item. Anyone can claim they caught the winning homerun ball. You have to prove it. If you can’t prove it the item is worth much less. Always do business with a trusted source like Goldin Auctions.

6 Tips for Buying Autographed Baseballs

There’s nothing more magical than tossing a baseball to the dugout, or field, and getting your favorite player’s autograph on it. Times are changing and security has been increasing at ballparks, year after year, resulting in less fan-to-player contact. Lucky for you, autographed baseballs can be purchased from many sources. Here is what you need to look for when buying an autographed baseball.

Guide to Buying Autographed Baseballs
When buying collectible, autographed baseballs you’ll need to watch out for autograph placement, quality, personalization, and authenticity.

Autograph Placement

The placement of where the player signed their name is an important fact when purchasing an autographed baseball. The most desirable place to have an autograph on a baseball is the “sweet spot”. An autograph here is more aesthetically pleasing and is valued higher in return. An autograph on the baseball’s “side panel” will be valued less and is common with vintage baseball autographs.

Baseball Quality

When purchasing autographed baseballs make sure they are official National or American league balls that correspond with the player’s league they play or have played in. Autographs on official baseballs are valued higher than random low quality balls and are much more desirable to collectors. When purchasing an autograph from a dealer or individual you can easily check this by viewing the baseball.

Personalization

Although it is tempting to get a baseball player to sign a personalized autograph, like “To Bobby, Swing for the Fences. – Babe Ruth”, it is less desirable to collectors and will be valued less than autographs that are not personalized. Photographs are personalized much more than baseballs but keep this in mind.

Buy From a Reputable Dealer

The Internet is a great tool to connect with other collectors and find baseball memorabilia but can not help you distinguish between reputable and fraudulent pieces. In fact one known collector claims that around 90% of all autographs for sale on the internet are fake. He spoke of a charity auction where all but two autographed pieces were fakes! They came with certificates of authenticity but from a non-reputable source making them worthless pieces of paper. Just last year there was a ring of thieves that were caught and charged with selling over two million dollars worth of fraudulant sports autographs on Ebay! As you can see it is way too risky to purchase an autographed baseball from a random seller on-line. Only trust dealers and auction houses like Goldin Auctions.

Buy Items with a Certificate of Authenticity

You should only buy autographed baseballs that come with a certificate of authenticity from a reputable third party. There are many small-time certificate providers and their certificates may not be worth anything. You should only trust items that are certified by companies like PSA Card or JSA.

Do Your Homework

Before you purchase an autographed baseball do market research and make note of the value of pieces and what they are being sold for. This will make sure you do not overpay for the item you purchase. Although this is not a complete resource, PSA Card has a database of autographed balls on-line for you to search through.

In the future, use this information to stay safe when purchasing autographed baseballs and keep in touch with us to view future auctions that may feature a ball you may be interested in. Good luck!