See also : Sport Sport II Baseball Babe Ruth Basketball Basketball jersey Jordan Central and South Americas Textiles Baseball jersey
Chronology : 1998 2008
1920 Babe Ruth Road Jersey
2012 SOLD for $ 4.4M by SCP
The players used two jerseys, a home jersey for the games on their field and a road jersey for trips. A jersey could be used throughout one season or more, which further increases their rarity.
Compared to the next period, documents allowing photo-matching are scarce. The experts thus pay the greatest attention to the details of making which allow an identification of the year or a range of years, rather than on the shears in the textile or on misalignments in the inscriptions.
On May 19, 2012, SCP Auctions sold for $ 4.4M a game worn jersey of Babe Ruth. A photo of the champion made in March 1920 shows him with a jersey identical as this example.
This road jersey had been exhibited for many years at the Babe Ruth Birthplace Museum in Baltimore. Its New York Yankees front marking is dated circa 1920. The maker was Spalding.
In very good condition, it retains its original identification with the name of Ruth.
BABE RUTH BIRTHDAY: Today on January 6 1895 the greatest player to play the game of Baseball was born. Here is the best piece of Ruthian memorabilia sold by @SCPAuctions for $4,415,658 World record for a piece of sports memorabilia #Baberuth @baseballhall @Yankees @MLB #MLB pic.twitter.com/Z5BL5bA2DF— SCP Auctions (@SCPAuctions) February 6, 2018
1928-1929 Babe Ruth Road Jersey
2019 SOLD for $ 5.6M by Hunt
The 'Yankees' mark on the front side enables to date the garment between 1927 and 1930. A label inside the collar is marked 'Ruth'. A number 3 has been erased at some point while leaving some traces.
The photos of Babe Ruth in 1927 show another placement of the buttons. The photo-matching orients rather towards 1928 or 1929. It is in 1929 that the Yankees began to sew a number on the jerseys to facilitate the identification of the players by the public. Ruth had received the number 3.
UPDATE: Babe Ruth NY Yankees Jersey added to Ruth Collection Live Auction at @yankeestadium. Professional model Yankees Road Jersey Worn by the #Bambino dates to the 1928-30 era with Potential to Set World Record Pricing in Excess of $4,000,000! @NewYorkYankees #SultanofSwat @MLB pic.twitter.com/0dx9NChNR4— Hunt Auctions (@HuntAuctions) April 23, 2019
1958 Mickey Mantle Home Jersey
2023 SOLD for $ 4.7M by Heritage
In 1956 he was the Most Valuable Player with 52 home runs and an average of .353. He became the 12th batter in history to win the Major League Triple Crown, meaning that he was the best in the three categories : batting average, home runs and runs batted in. He was recognized by the Associated Press as the Athlete of the Year for all sports combined. He was again rewarded as American League MVP in 1957.
For that period, the photo-matching of New York Yankees jerseys is easy. The logo on the chest is composed of an N and a Y with curved branches, individually sewn by hand. Each piece is easily recognizable in the photos by the respective position of the two letters and by their positioning over the vertical stripes of the garment.
On January 23, 2020, Mile High Card sold as lot 1 for $ 650K a Spalding flannel home jersey dated 1955, on which the central bar of the N forms a narrow angle with the upper left bar of the Y. It is narrated in the pre sale article shared on January 1 by Sports Collector Daily.
This garment is matched with all of Mantle's photos in the Yankees Stadium from March 1956 to July 1956, with no prior use. The auction house estimates that Mantle achieved 17 homers with this jersey.
It is completely authentic except the large number 7 on the back which is not original. Such an alteration was a standard practice when a jersey obsoleted by a player was offered to a lower league club. It is graded A7 by MEARS.
A pinstriped home jersey got seven photo-matchings in 1958-1959 by Resolution Photomatching, starting with an award ceremony at the Yankee Stadium on April 18, 1958. Having never been modified for lower league action, this garment is fully original excepted one button. It is graded Superior/Superior-Excellent by SGC equivalent to 9.5 in numerical grading. The dark navy felt logo on the chest and the number 7 on the back are in the original position.
This piece of uniform was sold for $ 4.7M from a lower estimate of $ 4M by Heritage on August 19, 2023, lot 80094. Please watch the video shared by the auction house.
The NY Yankees were World Champions in 1958 but Mickey Mantle finished only on fifth position for the 1958 American League MVP award.
1972 Wilt Chamberlain NBA Finals Home Jersey
2023 SOLD for $ 4.9M by Sotheby's
The NBA Finals were played between the Lakers and the New York Knicks. On May 5, 1972, Chamberlain broke his right hand in the fourth Game. On May 7, he played the fifth and last game with his hand packed into thick pads, recording 24 points, 29 rebounds, 8 assists, and 8 blocked shots. He had refused a painkiller for fear he would lose his shooting touch.
With their win 114-100 in that fifth Game, the Lakers got the NBA title for the first time since they have moved from Milwaukee to Los Angeles. Chamberlain was awarded the Finals MVP for the first and last time and Sharman was named NBA Coach of the year.
A gold color # 13 Lakers jersey worn by Chamberlain is photo-matched by MeiGray and Sports Investors Authenticated with a number of games including the Western Conference Finals in April 1972 and the Games 2 and 5 of the NBA Finals. The other three games of the Finals had been played in New York. This cotton garment by Tiernan was sold for $ 4.9M by Sotheby's on September 27, 2023, lot 1.
1986 Diego Maradona Shirt
2022 SOLD for £ 7.1M by Sotheby's
Maradona scored within four minutes at the beginning of the second half two goals that were to become legendary for opposite reasons.
He opened the score with a goal helped by his hand. At that time when no video support was available for the referees, the point was declared as valid in an atmosphere of triumph supported by Maradona's spectacular celebration. Fully aware of his mischief, Maradona commented in the post game press conference that he made the goal “un poco con la cabeza de Maradona y otro poco con la mano de Dios".
The decisive goal of the match was scored by Maradona four minutes after the Hand of God. This one is a great demonstration of Maradona's superior dribbling skills as he had been able to pass four defenders in a run of half the length of the pitch. It will referred in 2002 as The Goal of the Century and described as the greatest individual goal of all time. The image of Diego celebrating that feat is shared by Wikimedia.
A later English goal put the final score to 2-1.
Steve Hodge had been involved as an English defender in both Maradona's winning actions. He managed to swap his shirt for Maradona's in the changing room. Please watch the interview shared by Goal of Steve Hodge as 'the Man with Maradona's shirt of God'.
Maradona's shirt of the Hand of God and the Goal of the Century was loaned from 2002 by Hodge to the National Football Museum in Manchester. It was then consigned by him to Sotheby's who commissioned conclusively to Resolution Photomatching the photo-matching with the quarterfinal. It was sold for £ 7.1M from a lower estimate of £ 4M on May 4, 2022, lot 1.
1996 Kobe Bryant Home Jersey
2021 SOLD for $ 3.6M by Goldin
On May 22, 2021, Goldin sold a home jersey of the rookie Kobe Bryant for $ 3.6M, lot 10. It has been matched to a photo shoot before the opening of the 1996-1997 season and is arguably the very first Lakers jersey worn by the player.
This size 44 Lakers 8 jersey has also been conclusively matched by Resolution Photomatching to seven home games from that season, plus tentatively to two other games. This jersey is correct to the uniforms made by Champion for the Lakers in the 1996-1997 season and the autograph signature has been authenticated by Beckett. It is in a condition of an extensive game use.
A home jersey in the purple and gold colors of the Lakers was sold for $ 2.74M by SCP on June 4, 2022, lot 1. It bears the number 8 of Kobe Bryant. Previously unknown, it surfaced for that auction when the consignor knew about the earlier rookie jersey of Kobe Bryant that was sold by Goldin in 2021, narrated above. He claims having it presented to him directly by Kobe.
1998 Michael Jordan Last Dance Road Jersey
2022 SOLD for $ 10M by Sotheby's
The first game was made in Salt Lake City on June 3, in a surrounding ambience hostile to the Bulls. Utah won it by a narrow margin, despite the 33 points scored by Jordan.
The road jersey worn by Michael Jordan in that Game 1 was sold for $ 10M from a lower estimate of $ 3M by Sotheby's on September 15, 2022, lot 1. It has been photo matched in game use by MeiGray.
After Game 5 the Bulls were leading 3-2 and Utah could expect a tie as the home team in Game 6. The game was tied 83-83 with one minute left. Utah scored with 43 seconds left and Jordan brought the victory of Game 6 and the Finals to the Bulls at 87-86 with 5 seconds and a timeout left. Jordan had scored 45 points in Game 6 where he wore a similar red and black road jersey as in Game 1.
That win was also the end of an era for the Bulls plagued by tension between manager and coach. Jordan announced his retirement but made a come back as NBA player with the Washington Wizards in 2001 after the September 11 attack.
In 2020 The Last Dance raised a worldwide attention to Michael Jordan as an all sport Greatest Of All Time. This 10-part TV documentary relied on 500 hour footage of candid film of the Bulls in that highly successful 1997-1998 season, made by an entertainment crew for use in a documentary. The project had been delayed until Jordan gave his permission;
(2007)-2008 Kobe Bryant Mamba Mentality Jersey
2023 SOLD for $ 5.8M by Sotheby's
An image of Kobe is iconic and had many derivative products such as murals, posters, magazines, t-shirts, skateboards, tattoos and more. The champion is screaming his triumph and pumping his chest in elation after scoring a decisive three point shot for his Lakers against Denver on April 23, 2008. When Kobe was posthumously enshrined in 2020 into the Hall of Fame, this moment was featured on the program and VIP Passes for the evening.
The number 24 Lakers gold home jersey worn by Kobe on this image had an extensive use during the 2007-2008 season with 26 photomatchings authenticated by MeiGray from Getty images. The catalogue estimates that Kobe Bryant scored 645 points in this jersey.
It was also worn for the MVP (Most Valuable Player) trophy presentation on May 7, 2008, which was the only NBA MVP of his career.
This Adidas jersey size 54 plus 2 length was sold for $ 5.8M by Sotheby's on February 9, 2023, lot 1. The uniform is accompanied with photos of period murals in Los Angeles and with an illustrated skate deck.
2013 LeBron James Home Jersey
2023 SOLD for $ 3.7M by Sotheby's
The 2013 Finals were much more challenging, between the Heat and the San Antonio Spurs. The Spurs were leading the series 3-2 so that the 6th game, played in Miami, would be decisive. With 28.2 seconds remaining, the Spurs were leading 94-89 but the Heat were able to tie and to win after an overtime by 103-100, now tying the series at 3-3..
In these conditions the final and 7th game, also happening in Miami, promised to be one of the most thrilling events in NBA history. It was. Miami won 95-88 including 37 points scored by James.
The jersey number 6 worn by James in the first half of the 7th game was sold for $ 3.7M by Sotheby's on January 27, 2023, lot 1. This Adidas garment is of size 2XL plus 2 length for that 2.03 m 113 kg tall guy. It is photomatched by MeiGray.
2022 Messi World Cup Set of Shirts
2023 SOLD for $ 7.8M by Sotheby's
In 2022 Argentina's captain was the 35 year old Lionel 'Leo' Messi, playing his sixth World Cup including a lost final in 2014. Messi was the first ever player to score at least one goal in each round of the Cup.
The final was arguably the most spectacular FIFA final of all time due to the duel between the Paris Saint-Germain teammates Messi and Mbappé. It is also considered among the greatest football matches of all time.
Messi had scored once in first half, once in extra time plus the first Argentinian shoot out. Mbappé had scored twice in the second half, once in extra time plus the first French shoot out. No red card was attributed during this superb 120 minute game.
Six shirts respectively worn by Messi in the first halves of two from three group stage matches, the round of 16 and the quarterfinal, semifinal and final have been gathered as a single lot, sold for $ 7.8M by Sotheby's on December 14, 2023, lot 1.
These Adidas garments of medium slim size with the striped light blue and white of Argentina and Messi's number 10 have been photo-matched by Sports Investors Authentication. They are made in recycled polyester, jacquard and mesh.