by Catalogs.com Info Guru Aurora LaJambre
Collectors of sports memorabilia are always after that next special find.
For many, this means purchasing an item of high value at a reasonable price, but that’s not all. The most prized sports collectibles are significant because they’re rare, belonged to a much-loved athlete, include an authenticated signature or were used by an icon at a historic game.
These top ten include some of the most expensive, unique and best loved collectors’ items.
10. Accessories for your sport of choice
The best place to start “collecting” sports stuff is to add to the accessories, specialized equipment and apparel for your favorite sport. Even better if it’s a sport that calls for a lot of gear. Go for skis, the best goggles out there (two or three pairs) and the newest clothing to keep you in top form on the slopes. Or, make hiking your passion, and put the word out that anything “hiking related” will be the most appreciated gift.
9. Signed balls
The most prized sports collectibles belong to a big moment in sports history. Balls signed by icons like Babe Ruth and Joe DiMaggio send adrenaline soaring when they happen upon an auction gallery. And when these already special balls can be traced back to historic games, like the 70th home run hit by Mark McGwire’s, bidding goes sky high.
8. Vintage Humor
Every collector’s shelf deserves a bit of novel humor. Three Stooges golfers celebrate the spirit of the game while adding personality to any display. This is the way to go to combine your double passion and narrow down your collection, as well. Add more Three Stooges sports themed collectibles and build an impressive collection.
7. Limited editions
Prized sports collectibles are often produced in limited supply to increase the value. Sometimes they’ll even be signed by a team or player. Always ask for a certificate of authenticity before purchasing.
Fans know strange superstitions go with the territory. Many wear their team jerseys on game day to do their part for the win. If you’re a participant as well as an enthusiast, gear like soccer and cycling jerseys keeps you performing at your best. Who knows- perhaps like The Bambino your jersey will sell for almost $4.5 million someday, too. It could happen.
5. Historic firsts
It’s not every year that a new stadium is built, and there can only be one first in the most cherished ones. Though the original Yankee Stadium is no longer, the bat Babe Ruth used to hit the very first home run there in 1923 is still going strong with a value of $1.265 million.
4. Personal affects
Occasionally an athlete’s personal affects will show up on the marketplace, often after an estate sale or former associate puts the item up. These range in value, but quirky collectors like the statement pieces. Examples include Michael Jordan’s shoes, the sink from Mickey Mantle’s home and the pajamas of Muhammad Ali.
3. Ticket stubs
Short of inventing a working time machine, ticket stubs from Wilt Chamberlain’s 100-point game for Philadelphia’s Warriors or one of Muhammad Ali’s knockout matches is the next best thing to having been there. Value’s range depending on the quality of the stub and significance of the event. These are the kind of unique scores you’ll find at flea markets and yard sales.
2. Championship fan jewelry
When your team finally wins the Super Bowl, it’s time to splurge a bit. Championship fan jewelry like rings and charms commemorate a team’s championship year. These are some of the most cherished additions to a display because they bring you back to that moment of glory.
1. Vintage equipment
Worn baseball gloves, footballs and antique leather helmets are the holy grail for many. These you’ll find online and by frequenting flea markets on a regular basis. Keep the finds you feel sentimental towards, but don’t automatically ignore those you don’t. If you get them cheap, these items can often be flipped for a pretty penny.