In a thrilling event for sports memorabilia enthusiasts, a Spalding baseball glove from 1916 is causing quite a stir at Heritage Auctions. What makes this glove so special? Well, not only does it feature a signature from baseball legend Babe Ruth, but it actually has two of them. And if that wasn’t enough, it also bears the inscription that it was used by Ruth in the 1916 World Series. With such a remarkable backstory, it comes as no surprise that experts are predicting that this rare artifact will fetch a price well over one million dollars.
The glove’s journey to the auction block is just as intriguing as its prior owner. Once owned by Joe E. Brown, an entertainment icon known for his acting, comedy, and sports broadcasting during the 1930s, this glove holds a significant place in sports history. Brown, who was an avid collector of sports memorabilia, had an impressive collection, and this glove was one of its most cherished pieces. Although Brown may have faded from public memory, his legacy lives on through this glove and the other items he collected.
What sets this particular glove apart is the fact that it bears not just one, but two signatures of the legendary Babe Ruth. The first signature dates back to 1916 when Ruth, alongside his Red Sox teammates, emerged victorious in the World Series against the Brooklyn Robins. The second signature, accompanied by Ruth’s note stating, “Glove I used in the 1916 World Series,” was added later on, underscoring Ruth’s recognition of the glove’s significance in his early career. In addition to Ruth’s signatures, the glove also features autographs from Harry Hooper, Duffy Lewis, Larry Gardner, and Tillie Walker, further solidifying its status as a piece of baseball history.
The bidding for this extraordinary glove has already exceeded $300,000 within the first day of the auction, showcasing the immense interest from collectors around the world. Heritage Auctions is optimistic that the final hammer price will reach or even surpass the million-dollar mark. This glove’s auction follows the sale of another Ruth-related item, a glove gifted to Jimmy Austin, which achieved a staggering $1.5 million in a previous auction, setting the bar high for the value of authentic Ruth memorabilia.
The glove’s authenticity has been confirmed by reputable authentication services Beckett and PSA/DNA, with Steve Grad of Beckett describing the examination as “the coolest thing I’ve ever seen.” The authentication process plays a vital role in assuring potential bidders about the veracity of Ruth’s signatures and the historical importance of the glove, adding to its appeal and value.
Despite Joe E. Brown’s collection having been devastated by fire, the impact of his collection on the world of sports memorabilia lives on through exceptional pieces like this glove. The auction presents a remarkable opportunity for collectors to own a tangible piece of baseball’s past while also paying tribute to the enduring legacies of both Babe Ruth and Joe E. Brown. As the auction date draws near, excitement and anticipation continue to build, with the promise of a historic sale that will be talked about for years to come. So mark your calendars, sports fans and collectors, because this auction is one you won’t want to miss.