Speed Reads

the great bambino

Babe Ruth's 1918 contract for $5,000 sells for $1.02 million

That’s an expensive piece of paper: Babe Ruth's 1918 contract with the Boston Red Sox sold on Saturday for more than $1 million.

About 36 pieces of Ruth memorabilia went on the auction block, one day after the 100th anniversary of his major league debut. The contract was for $5,000, but sold for $1.02 million, which ESPN says is the highest price ever paid for a sports contract. It wasn't the only item to bring in a lot of money: a bat Ruth used early in his career went for $215,000, while a signed ball sold for $96,000 (insert a joke about The Sandlot here).

One piece of history that didn't find a new owner was the first ball Ruth hit for a home run at Yankee Stadium; that item didn't meet its reserve price of $100,000.