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Babe Ruth's contract for sale
Overstock says only negatives of the player's first professional contract will be up for auction.
March 17, 2005: 4:30 PM EST
Overstock.com said the original glass plate negative of Babe Ruth's first professional baseball contract will be up for auction starting Friday.
Overstock.com said the original glass plate negative of Babe Ruth's first professional baseball contract will be up for auction starting Friday.

NEW YORK (CNN/Money) - Overstock.com said Thursday that the original glass plate negatives of Babe Ruth's first professional baseball contract will go up for auction on its site starting Friday.

The negatives of the baseball legend's contract, signed with the Boston Red Sox in 1916, is believed to be the only record in existence, seller Rick Steele told CNN/Money.

The Mesa, Arizona private collector said he bought the copy from another private collector in 1998 but declined to discuss the purchase price.

In the early years, Steel said the American League Baseball Club archived player contracts, including Ruth's, on glass plate negatives and commonly destroyed the original paper copy. The copy, according to Overstock.com, details his $3,500 annual salary and a rare signature using his formal name, George H. Ruth, Jr.

Ruth scored 714 home runs during this professional career, the all-time record for 39 years until Hank Aaron hit his 715th on Opening Day of the 1974 season.

Ruth, who was known as "Bambino," is still considered by many the greatest of all baseball players.

Overstock.com (Research) said the 10-day auction will end on March 28.  Top of page

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