Pete Rose is a dude who will sign anything for money. Books, balls, bats, pictures…anything you can think of, Rose has probably signed. But this is a new one: Goldin Auctions is selling the document Rose signed when former MLB commissioner Bart Giamatti banned him from baseball.
The document is five pages long, acknowledges his banishment from the league (though does not contain an admission of him betting on baseball), and features the signatures of Rose, Giamatti, and former MLB deputy commissioner Fay Vincent. Only two copies of this document exist, with one in the hands of MLB, and the other (Rose's copy) being handed over to a friend of Rose before Goldin acquired it.
Copies of this document have been sold by Rose in the past (for the cool price of $500), but I don't think anyone ever imagined that the original would ever pop up on the secondary market. Well, here we are. This is a legitimate piece of baseball history unlike any other item sold in recent years. You can talk about jerseys, bats, gloves, and signatures of legendary players…but is there anything more interesting to have in your possession than a signed copy of the original document that destroyed the legacy of one of the best players in baseball history? I think not.
The auction will begin on October 10th, and no reserve has been set. The highest price that a baseball related document has for in the past was the sale contract between the Red Sox and Yankees that sent Babe Ruth to New York. That piece of history went for $996,000, and the people at Goldin feel like this could go for more.