Mark McGwire’s historic home run hasn’t exactly aged like a fine wine. More like a carton of expired milk.
Comedian Todd McFarlane bought McGwire’s 70th home run ball from the 1998 season for a shade over $3 million, and now it might be worth as little as $250,000, according to sports memorabilia auction houses, TMZ Sports reported.
There are a few reasons for this: Barry Bonds passed McGwire in 2003, hitting 73 homers. And McGwire’s record became stained, due to his admitted steroid use. According to Ken Golin of Goldin Auctions, the McGwire ball is now worth $250,000 to $300,000. David Kohler of SCP Auctions thinks it could retrieve up to $400,000.
Either way, the price has plummeted precipitously. But McFarlane is still happy to have it.
“If Wayne Gretzky breaks a goals scored record, he puts the puck in the net, ‘Time!’ and they go get the puck and they give it to Wayne. Michael Jordan scores the most points, ‘Time!’ Somebody gets the most touchdowns, ‘Time!’ [and all the milestone balls are given to the athletes],” McFarlane said on ESPN’s documentary, “Long Gone Summer,” that covered the McGwire and Sosa home run chase of 1998 and aired on Sunday night.
“You hit that home run, and you set any kind of record with that home run, could be a guy in the bleachers, one of the bleacher bums goin, ‘I’ve got the ball. This ball right here is history.’ You’re in the middle of that story. That ball put you in the middle of that story.”