Last Updated on 1/2/2005 by bidz

More fans are plunking down cold cash for a piece of their favorite sports celebrity

By KAREN SPILLER, Telegraph Staff
Published: Sunday, Dec. 19, 2004
The Telegraph Online

…The sports collectible category on eBay is a popular one, with nearly 853,000 listings on a daily basis. Those listings include autographs, souvenirs, old programs, ticket stubs and fan apparel.
But people such as McCarthy warn fans to be wary of what they buy on eBay and encourage them to go through reputable dealers such as McLaughlin.
Whipps said eBay has pulled “questionable” autographed items from the auction site. He recommends people buy items that are authenticated from a well-known authentication company, such as Professional Sports Authenticator or Global Authentication.

“Unfortunately, I’m afraid right now people are spending a lot of money on current players that aren’t going to be worth anything in five or 10 years,” he said. “Johnny Damon is a great player, but that’s it. He’s not a Hall of Famer.”
Autographs that will hold their value come from long-ago players such as Babe Ruth, Ted Williams, Joe DiMaggio, Mickey Mantle and Lou Gehrig, McCarthy said.
“It’s supply and demand,” he said. “Those players didn’t sign as much as the current players sign.”

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