Babe Ruth’s 500th Home Run Bat Sells for $1 Million

LAGUNA NIGUEL, Calif. (AP) — Babe Ruth has hit another one out of the ballpark.

The bat the Sultan of Swat used to hit his 500th home run was auctioned on Saturday for more than $1 million.

The Babe stands in the dugout on July 19, 1929, three weeks before he hit his 500th home run. (AP file photo)

SCP Auctions did not identify the buyer at the auction in Laguna Niguel, California.

The Bambino hit his 500th homer on Aug. 11, 1929 in a game against the Cleveland Indians. According to SCP Auctions, the ball cleared the right field wall at League Park and rolled down Lexington Avenue.

Ruth was the first of 27 Major League Baseball players to reach that mark.

He gave the autographed bat to his friend, former Suffern, New York, Mayor Jim Rice, in the 1940s. It’s been in the family for nearly 75 years.

Another Ruth bat used to hit the first home run out of Yankee Stadium in 1923 sold for nearly $1.3 million in 2004.

Ruth was the first modern celebrity, in that newspapers assigned reporters to follow him everywhere and report virtually anything he said or did. Virtually single-handedly, he raised the salaries of sports heroes nationwide, despite the restrictive policies that empowered team owners.

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