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11Jul/060

Rare baseball memorabilia fetches more than $3 million at auction.

A Washington Senators jersey formerly owned by Hall of Fame-great Walter Johnson sold for $352,000 at a recent auction of Important Sports Memorabilia and Cards held by SCP Auctions and Sotheby's.

One of just two that are known to exist, the jersey belonged to the estate of Eric ?Swat? Erickson, one of Johnson?s former teammates. It emerged after 80-plus years in seclusion.

?The sale of the Walter Johnson jersey for $352,000 proves Johnson?s stature as one of the greatest pitchers of all time,? Lee Dunbar, director of Sotheby?s collectibles department said. ?After being tucked away in an attic for the past 80 years, it?s nice to know that the jersey will go to another home where it will be appreciated.?

Additional memorabilia highlighting the auction include a Babe Ruth autographed game-used bat which brought in $216,000; a 1927 Lou Gehrig Louisville Slugger bat which brought in $96,000; and a Jackie Robinson game-used 1949 All Stat bat which fetched more than $130,000. The steep price tag was a record for a Robinson bat sold at auction.

?With the fiftieth anniversary of Jackie Robinson breaking baseball's color line next year, it was exciting to see his bat sell for $132,000, a record that demonstrates the continued appreciation for Robinson's historic achievements,? David Kohler, president of SCP Auctions said.

Overall, more than $3.2 million worth of memorabilia was sold at the auction.

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