Beginning Oct. 8, you can put in your bid on a priceless piece of American sports memorabilia and help Hall of Fame pitcher Don Larsen pay for his grandchildren’s college education.
Larsen, 82, is auctioning off the jersey he wore when he pitched a perfect game in the 1956 World Series. Oct. 8 marks the 56th anniversary of this historic event, the only perfect game every pitched in the post-season. The auction, to be coducted by Steiner Sports Marketing, will end Dec. 2.
"I'm auctioning the uniform to provide my grandsons with enough money for a college education," he told The New York Times. "What the uniform actually sells for is not that important to me; whatever happens, happens. I'm just hoping for enough to help the grandkids."
How much does he think it’s worth? "I really don't know,” he said. "But what I do know is that in terms of historic importance, my uniform is a part of one of the greatest moments in the history of sports."
Almost three-quarters (70 percent) of Millionaires ages 65 and older are concerned about the financial situation of their children or grandchildren, according to a 2012 first quarter wealth level study conducted by Millionaire Corner. Forty-five percent count said that financing the education of their grandchildren is among their personal financial concerns, with 11 percent saying they are worried about the educational costs of their children.
Educational expenses are a concern even in wealthier households. Forty-five percent of high net worth individuals – those with investable assets of $5 million to $25 million – say they are worried about their grandchildren’s educational expenses – up from 40 percent last year. One-fourth is concerned about financing their children’s college education, compared to 11 percent last year.
The New York Timesreported earlier this year that college tuition and fees are 559 percent of their cost in 1985. They have sextupled while consumer prices have doubled.
Larsen’s one-of-kind jersey should go a long way toward easing the burden of paying for his grandchildren’s college if other sales of vintage sports memorabilia are any indication. Yogi Berra, who caught Larsen’s perfect game, sold his game jersey for $565,000.
Just two weeks ago, a Babe Ruth 1920 Yankees road jersey knocked one out of the park when it fetched $4.4 million, an unprecedented price for sports memorabilia. Two years ago, 119-years-old original basketball rules written by the sport’s founder James Naismith sold for $4.2 million. Mark McGuire’s 70th home run ball scored $3,005,000, and the most sought-after baseball card, the T206 Honus Wagner tobacoo card sold for $2.3 million.
Donald Liebenson writes news and features for Millionaire Corner. He has been published in the Chicago Tribune, The Chicago Sun-Times, The Los Angeles Times, Fiscal Times, Entertainment Weekly, Huffington Post, and other outlets. He has also served as a marketing writer for Chicago-based Questar Entertainment and distributor Baker & Taylor.
A graduate of the University of Southern California, he is married with a college-age son. He also writes extensively about entertainment.