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Babe Ruth glove strikes out auction record for most money spent on glove

The glove was used by Babe Ruth during the second half of his career with the New York Yankees

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New York Yankees legend George Herman “Babe” Ruth takes a big swing at New York’s Yankee Stadium in this June 18, 1929, file photo. (AP Photo/file)

New York Yankees legend George Herman “Babe” Ruth takes a big swing at New York’s Yankee Stadium in this June 18, 1929, file photo.

Associated Press

The baseball glove of New York Yankees star Babe Ruth sold for $1.53 million, breaking records for sports memorabilia at the Louisville Slugger Museum & Factory auction on Saturday.

The previous record for a baseball glove sold at an auction was Lou Gehrig’s glove, which sold for $389,500, according to the Bleacher Report.

“This monumental glove is truly [one] of the most historic pieces of its medium to have ever been offered at public auction,” president of Hunt Auctions, David Hunt, said.

What we know about Babe Ruth’s glove

The Associated Press reported that an unidentified bidder paid $1,527,500 for the glove, which is the highest price ever put on a glove.

The glove that was sold in the auction was used by Ruth during the second half of his career and came from a collection owned by Jimmy Austin, who also played for the Yankees and the St. Louis Browns from 1909 to 1929, according to MLB.com.

“My childhood memories with my Uncle Jim are extremely dear to me,” Susan Kolokoff, Austin’s niece, said in a statement from Hunt Auctions. “The glove had rested in a box for the last 30 years until we learned of its history and heard the amazing audio recording.”

The audio Kolokoff talked about was of a 1964 interview with Austin for the 1966 book “The Glory of Their Times,” where Austin detailed how Babe Ruth gave him the glove and what that meant to him.

Why people invest in sports memorabilia

Forbes reported that sports memorabilia has a large market currently and millennials are the main buyers.

A Charlotte-based collector, Howard Epstein, said, “Millennials are spending money like crazy. The pandemic kept people home and some of the older guys are pulling out stuff and selling.”

For example, a famous 1952 Mickey Mantle card recently sold for $5.2 million, two contracts for Jackie Robinson have been appraised and insured at a rate of $36 million and many more Babe Ruth items, like one of his uniforms, have sold for more than $5.6 million.