William Henry - Monarch Fable

Sports Gold

FIVE LEGENDS DOMINATE THE YEAR’S TOP-SELLING ARTIFACTS

High-grade cards and game-worn jerseys continue dominating the “hot list” of the world’s top sports collectibles, and 2017 was no exception.

Heritage Auctions’ sports department ended the year with more than $63 million in auction revenues, with total sales, which includes private sales, of more than $100 million.

“We are proud to be the first sports collectibles auctioneer to post a nine-figure annual sales total,” says Sports Auction Director Chris Ivy. “It’s a tribute to the enduring strength of the hobby and our unrivaled ability to connect with a global audience of sophisticated collectors.”

The year’s blockbuster lot was the jersey Jackie Robinson wore at the start of his Major League career in 1947, when Robinson opened the door for the integration of baseball. Its $2.05 million price “smashed Heritage’s own previous world record of $573,600 for a post-war game-worn jersey, a 1955 rookie model from Robinson’s teammate and fellow Hall of Famer Sandy Koufax,” Ivy says.

Here are the year’s top-performing lots, dominated by five sports legends: Robinson, Lou Gehrig, Mickey Mantle, Babe Ruth and Ty Cobb.

Robinson Jersey
Jackie Robinson
1947 Brooklyn Dodgers Rookie Jersey Worn by Jackie Robinson the Year he Broke the “Color Barrier” in Major League Baseball
$2.05 million
November 2017
Lou Gehrig
1937 New York Yankees Jersey Worn by Lou Gehrig, Matched to Jersey Worn in his Monument Park plaque (right) at Yankee Stadium
$870,000
August 2017
Mickey Mantle
1952 Topps Mickey Mantle #311, Graded PSA NM-MT 8
$660,000
February 2017
Babe Ruth
1916 M101-5 Blank Back (Sporting News) Babe Ruth Rookie #151, Graded PSA NM 7
$552,000
May 2017
Mickey Mantle
1968 Mickey Mantle Game-Worn New York Yankees Jersey Attributed to 535th Home Run, the Penultimate Round-Tripper of his Career
$486,000
February 2017
Lou Gehrig
1924 Lou Gehrig Signed New York Yankees Rookie Contract, Becomes a Permanent Member of the Yankees
$480,000
August 2017
Mickey Mantle
1954 Mickey Mantle Game-Worn New York Yankees Jersey, One of the Earliest Mantle Gamers Known
$432,000
August 2017
Ty Cobb
1915 Cracker Jack Ty Cobb #30, One of Three Graded Mint 9 with None Higher
$432,000
June 2017
Babe Ruth
1920 Babe Ruth Game-Used Bat from his First New York Yankees Season
$408,000
August 2017

This story appears in the Spring/Summer 2018 edition of The Intelligent Collector magazine. Click here to subscribe to the print edition.

You may also like