Have you ever collected baseball cards? Maybe you prefer collecting Hockey sticks or basketball jerseys?
Why do you collect sports memorabilia? I guess you’d ask the same of someone who collects militaria, Lego or even Pokémon cards.
Some of these items are priceless. They belonged to sportspeople who became legends in their field, revolutionizing the sport and it’s immortalized through the strips and the kit they wore.
Have you seen the price some of these items go for at auction? Eyewatering is it?
We’ll, we’re looking at the FIVE most expensive pieces of sports memorabilia that have gone to auction.
Babe Ruth’s Jersey
The G.O.A.T before G.O.A.Ts were even a thing, is the legendary Babe Ruth. While his skills as a baseball player remain widely discussed today, it’s what he wore on his back and the bits and bobs he played with that have gone under the hammer for incredible prices.
One of these items is the New York Yankees jersey he wore during the period of 1928 and 1930. The jersey sold at auction in 2019 for a whopping $5.64M USD.
It’s amazing what a piece of tailored flannel cloth almost a century old will sell for.
It wasn’t the first ‘Bambino’ jersey that sold at auction but it is the most expensive of the two. The first sold for $4.4M.
Muhammad Ali’s Belt
No list would be complete without mentioning the Greatest Boxer to ever live, Muhammad Ali.
Ali’s WBC championship belt that he hoisted above the cheering crowds at the Rumble in the Jungle of the 1970s, went under the hammer in 2022 for $6M.
Impressive right? Well, that’s not the whole story. Just five or so years before, the belt had gone under the hammer for just $120,000.
What does that tell you about the value of sporting memorabilia? Some items can really appreciate in value, in a short period of time.
Diego Maradona’s Strip
Easily one of the biggest names in soccer in the 1980s and believed to be blessed with skills on the ball handed down from on high, it’s Diego Maradona.
That divine power certainly has a part to play in the piece of sports memorabilia which went under the hammer in 2022.
Maradona’s strip he wore to ‘hand’ the ball into the back of the England net in the 1986 World Cup Quarter Final, sold for $9.3M.
Certainly, England fans will care less about how much it sold for. They’re probably still hurt about the clear foul which knocked them out of the World Cup.
Michael Jordan’s Jersey
Before Lebron James was beating Abdul Kareem Jabbar’s point scoring record or winning the NBA Championship four times with Miami Heat, Los Angeles Lakers or Cleveland Cavaliers, there was the original G.O.A.T, Michael Jordan.
Like Babe Ruth, MJ’s memorabilia also has a habit of selling for jaw-dropping amounts of money.
The piece of memorabilia we’re talking about is the Chicago Bulls jersey he wore at the 1998 NBA Finals.
That sweat sodden jersey went for $10M back in January 2023. It’s considered to be the record for the sale of a game-worn jersey.
Mickey Mantle’s Baseball Card
Baseball cards remain a very collectable item and can retain their value as long as you don’t break them.
They’re also a very common item to go to auction and some of the prices that they sell for are astronomical. That’s definitely the case with this next one… it went for an eight-figure sum!
A baseball card of fellow Yankees legend Mickey Mantle sold at auction in 2022 for an incredible $12.6M.
How on earth could it go for that much, you must be asking yourself? Well, the amount it sold for is record-breaking, but it also justified its price tag.
According to baseball card experts, the 1952 card was in pristine mint condition and one of the best examples of its kind still in existence.