CLEVELAND -- Barry Bonds' 70th home run ball from his record-breaking 2001 season sold for just $14,400 at auction after previously selling for $60,000 and valued at about half that.
Doug Allen, president of Mastro Auctions, said Hank Aaron's memorabilia attracted much higher bids in the Friday night auction.
An autographed Aaron jersey sold for $40,000 and his signed rookie contract with the Milwaukee Braves went for $31,200. Aaron's 1954 Topps rookie card sold for $19,200.
The ball was one of only a handful of items that didn't meet its estimated selling price, while all the Aaron memorabilia met or exceeded expectations, Allen said.
Bonds, in a weeklong home run drought, entered Saturday with 754 career home runs, one shy of tying Aaron's record.
While vintage memorabilia from legends like Aaron and Babe Ruth appreciates, steroid suspicions have hampered the value of collectibles from more recent years, Allen said.
"I don't think it'll necessarily rebound in the next couple of weeks when [Bonds] breaks the record," he said. "I think that, with the cloud of steroid concerns, until that goes away I don't think it's ever going to stabilize."
Bonds broke the single-season home run record in 2001 with 73,
and his 70th home run tied the previous record set by Mark McGwire in 1998. It was authenticated by a numbered stamp and hologram by Major League Baseball, Allen said.