Jackie Robinson first ball to see $30,000 at Hunt Auctions

The ball used in Jackie Robinson's historic first game will be sold later today (July 16) as part of Hunt Auctions' sale at the Major League Baseball All-Star FanFest.

Jackie Robinson ball
Any item from the historic game that broke the baseball colour line can be expected to fare well at auction

The ball is expected to make up to $30,000 in the auction, which comes just ahead of this year's All-Star game at Citi Field in New York.

Jackie Robinson was the first African American to play in a Major League Baseball game, breaking the colour line when the Brooklyn Dodgers started him at first base in 1947.

The ball was collected following the game by the umpires, who each signed it and gave it to their colleague Artie Gore, who had also just made his debut in Major League Baseball.

"Somewhere in between Nat Turner and Barack Obama was Jackie Robinson on April 15," commented Gore's nephew, Richard Flaherty. "I don't know if he hit that ball or not, but in terms of American history, it was pretty important."

David Hunt, president of Hunt Auctions, immediately recognised the ball's worth. "All I needed to see on the ball was the date of April 15, 1947. At the minimum, you know it's going to be of some significance," he said.

In June, a glove that Robinson wore during the last season of his career sold for $343,000 with Steiner Sports, spelling strong results for the present sale, which will undoubtedly be boosted by the excitement of the All-Star game later tonight.

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