His $35,000 salary in 1950 was the highest any member of the Brooklyn Dodgers had ever been paid. Seventy-one years later, a jersey Jackie Robinson wore has sold for over $4.2 million.
Hunt Auctions has sold the professional model home jersey through a private treaty sale to a client represented by Tony Arnold of Tonyetrade Enterprises. It’s the most paid for a post-World War II baseball jersey.
The jersey has been matched to several images taken during the 1950 season by Resolution Photomatching and Photo-Match.com. The jersey was also authenticated by Dave Grob at SGC who assigned the shirt a grade of Excellent/Superior.
The sale to a private collector establishes a new record price for any game-worn Robinson item. Hunt Auctions’ President David Hunt called it “not only a testament to the vibrant strength of the sports memorabilia marketplace but also serves as yet another reminder of Jackie’s significance to American sports and popular culture.”
In 2012, the same jersey sold at auction through Lelands or $401,968.
The $4.2 million price is the most ever paid for a piece of Robinson memorabilia. His cards have been skyrocketing in value, too, but surviving, well documented examples of his game-used items are scarce. In 2018, a rookie year Robinson jersey sold for $2.6 million.
Jackie Robinson holding his 1949 MVP award while wearing the jersey that just sold for over $4.2 million.
“For years we have witnessed pricing increase for items related to Robinson’s iconic career and see more room for growth as his legacy is becoming, appropriately so, more significant to each generation of fans,” Hunt stated.
In 2019, Hunt also sold the most valuable piece of game gear in hobby history, a circa 1928-30 Babe Ruth Yankees jersey, for over $5.6 million.