FRESNO, California -- Babe Ruth is an iconic larger-than-life baseball star, and a California man believes a recently purchased baseball card to be a rare item made by the Shotwell Company in 1921.
Dale Ball, of Visalia, just returned from Beverly Hills to have the card checked out by an antique expert.
"It's believed it's real," he said.
But the card he bought to add to his son Dennis' collection must be authenticated and graded by the Beckett Company.
Ball bought it from a collectibles store in Sparks, Nevada.
"I can't find it anywhere on the internet," he says the owner told him. "I think it's fake."
But Ball has been collecting cards since he was a kid.
"Something's not right here," he said. "This card is not a remake."
Chris Gooboian, of Bases Loaded Collectibles in northwest Fresno, said that if the card turns out to be the real deal, Ball should get a nice payoff.
"Oh my gosh, it would be an amazing card," he said. "Looking at the condition of this card, it looks really nice. A card from this era of Babe Ruth, if you get it authenticated, gosh, $20-30,000 is not out of the question."
Ball figures that may be the starting point for a similar card, the E-21, but he believes this is the Shotwell W-575-1 Babe Ruth card.
"This is the one everybody's looking for," he said.
If it's authenticated, it could change his life. Ball got emotional thinking about it.
"Can't answer it truthfully," he said. "Can't. God blessed me, and I intend to bless the guy that I got it from. I will go back to the store when it's all over to give him a proper payment."
Until then, Ball tells everyone who wants to buy the card the same thing.
"I told him my family's welfare depends on it," he said. "Bidding starts at $2 million."
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California man buys $2 Babe Ruth baseball card that may be worth millions
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