A private collection of important baseball memorabilia totals $6,545,625

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A private collection of important baseball memorabilia totals $6,545,625
Scarce and important Babe Ruth Boston Red Sox Era professional model baseball bat, c. 1916–18. Estimate: $500,000–1,000,000. Sold for: $600,000. © Christie's Images Ltd 2020.

NEW YORK, NY.- Christie’s and Hunt Auctions’ historic sale Home Plate: A Private Collection of Important Baseball Memorabilia achieved a total of $6,545,625 with 88% sold by lot, 95% sold by value. The top lot of the sale was the important 1931 Lou Gehrig New York Yankees professional model home jersey, which achieved $1,440,000.

Other top results included a scarce and important Babe Ruth Boston Red Sox Era Professional Model Baseball Bat (c. 1916-18) that sold for $600,000 and a highly important Lou Gehrig document archive from Dr. Paul O'Leary of The Mayo Clinic with relation to "ALS: Lou Gehrig Disease" (c.1939-41), which achieved $450,000. The strong selection of vintage baseball cards was led by the 1909-11 T-206 Ty Cobb card which totaled $437,500.

A poignant handwritten letter by Marilyn Monroe to Joe DiMaggio written on the reverse of a dry-cleaning receipt circa 1954, sold for $425,000, above its estimate of $50,000-100,000. Eighteen Presidential baseballs signed by 13 U.S. Presidents were led by a rare, Franklin D. Roosevelt-signed ball which sold for $100,000, more than doubling its high estimate. The selection of artefacts from the 1934 All-Star Tour of Japan was led by a significant and very rare 1934 U.S. All-Star Tour of Japan Presentational Display Autographed by United States and Japanese Teams which achieved $50,000.

David Hunt, President Hunt Auctions, comments: “The exceptional prices realized within the Home Plate Collection clearly illustrated the continuing maturation of the sports memorabilia category. Our partnership with Christie’s showcased an unparalleled combination of category experience and industry leadership which equated to a superb auction event of notable significance. I look forward to working with Christie’s in the future on similar special projects.”

Elizabeth Seigel, Head of Sale, Christie’s Private and Iconic Collections, remarks: “We are thrilled at the success of our inaugural partnership with Hunt Auctions, which brought together their specialized knowledge of baseball memorabilia with Christie’s global reach, leading to strong results across a number of key collecting categories.”

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