Babe Ruth was the first member and David Ortiz is the last, but no matter which member of the 500 home run club you name, there’s going to be a game bat for it in Mile High Card Company’s March Auction.
The company is undertaking a hobby first: a bat from all 27 players who’ve reached the milestone. Each will be offered as an individual lot when the auction opens March 4.
Company President and CEO Brian Drent made the announcement Monday.
“It’s never been done before,” said Drent, “and when you go down the list of legends in the 500 home run club and see their gamers that we have to offer, well it’s really a humbling experience.”
Ruth was the charter member, having hit the 500th of his 714 blasts in 1929. The auction will include one of his war clubs, along with 26 others representing some memorable Hall of Famers or those who will likely wind up enshrined there.
All 27 bats will come with an LOA from PSA/DNA bat expert John Taube. Many are early career or even rookie year models while some are attributed to career milestones.
The list will include rookie era bats of Jimmie Foxx (1926-27), Ted Williams (1939-40 small signature), Frank Robinson (1956-57) and Reggie Jackson (1969-92).
Others will include a Mickey Mantle dating from 1965-68; a 1950s Willie Mays model, a 1960s Hank Aaron, another from teammate Eddie Mathews, one from late in the career of Ernie Banks along with others from the likes of Mel Ott, Frank Robinson, Reggie Jackson, Harmon Killebrew, Willie McCovey, Barry Bonds and Ken Griffey Jr.
Beyond the 500 home run club bats will be game models of Tony Gwynn, Derek Jeter, Cal Ripken, Pete Rose, Mike Trout and others.
Other items already consigned to the auction include a Babe Ruth single-signed 1943 American League baseball, a rare N173 Old Judge Cabinet card of Mike “King” Kelly rated SGC 3; partial sets of 1915 Cracker Jack and T206 cards; a 1933 World Wide Gum uncut color-process proof sheet series of eight with seven Hall of Famers and another uncut sheet of 1933 World Wide Gum sheet with three Ruth cards and Lou Gehrig.
The auction will run through March 21. Consignments are still being accepted. Collectors can call (303) 840-2784 or contact the company through the website.