They are the pieces that bring the big bankrolls out of hiding. The last few years have seen the sale of several one-of-a-kind items that create headlines for reaching six and seven figure prices.
Babe Ruth game-worn jerseys and milestone baseballs. The T206 Honus Wagner card.
While the NFL and NBA have largely caught up to the national pastime in terms of popularity with fans, no piece of memorabilia goes for anything close to the top baseball items.
"Our industry is driven by baseball," says one auction house President, and you’ll find the most expensive pieces of baseball memorabilia share a common theme. They’re old. Well, all but one anyway.