One of Babe Ruth’s greatest gifts to baseball was his seemingly tireless ability to promote the game. The game’s greatest ever star–bigger than any Hollywood star or starlet–thought nothing of flying to some remote outpost for a barnstorming tour or speech to a group of Little Leaguers. Sure, he got paid, but being a benefactor for baseball long after his playing days ended was in his blood. More than six decades after his death, the Babe is still promoting. His baseball cards and memorabilia are hotter than ever, especially with investors and big time collectors.
The sale of that early Yankees jersey for $4.4 million drew a lot of attention. Mike Heffner of Lelands, the auction house that acted as the buyer for the private collector who bought it and has just loaned it to the Hall of Fame, says it’s believed there are five Ruth jerseys in private hands. He talked with Bloomberg News about what the future may hold for Ruth memorabilia.
Meanwhile, the top five highest priced baseball cards sold over the last 30 days were Ruth cards. According to Vintage Card Prices, a 1917 Collins-McCarthy Ruth sold by Legendary Auctions, led the way at $40,748. A PSA 8 1933 Goudey #53 sold for $48,135 while a 1916 Famous & Barr Ruth graded PSA 2, sold for $48,136, a 1933 Goudey Ruth #149, graded 8 by PSA, went for $36,410.