Thursday, June 24, 2010

MLB Inside Edition: Ranking the Most Desirable Dirty Dozen Artifacts

Part 13 of 13

1  Mark McGwire "Andro" Bottle

One of the most compelling story lines in MLB history occurred in 1998 when Sammy Sosa and Mark McGwire engaged in a home run battle that destroyed Roger Maris' magical 61-homer single season mark. 

Both sluggers generated tremendous fanfare as they surpassed one of baseball's most hallowed records and then jockeyed to see who would own the newly established mark.  Ultimately, McGwire's 70 dingers would top Sosa's 66 big flies that season. 

The real-time home run derby generated tremendous media attention, with reporters routinely mobbing each player's lockers after each game in hope of getting nuggets of wisdom and entertaining sound bites. 

Interestingly, along the way during a routine "Q&A," one reporter spotted a now infamous bottle of "Andro" in McGwire's locker. Although the substance was banned from other sports, Major League Baseball did not have a similar prohibition.

The incident led to the substance being included as a banned "PED" and set in motion suspicion about McGwire. After many allegations and his infamous 2005 Senate testimony, the brawny slugger finally admitted that he used more than Andro through the years (although he alleges all were for medicinal purposes.) 

That famous little bottle is somewhat of a symbol of the fallen heroes of an entire era in baseball. 

The Final Word

These 12 artifacts are not the typical items that would be found in Cooperstown or up for auction to be purchased by avid baseball collectors. 

This is not to say that there is a total void of somewhat off-beat items already on display. For instance, George Brett's pine tar bat and Curt Schilling's bloody sock now reside in glass cases in the Baseball Hall of Fame. 

We will likely never know what those items might command on the open market. But what if this dirty dozen set of controversial memorabilia made its way to eBay or Lelands?

They would surely arouse a great deal of curiosity and interest. Where would the bidding begin and ultimately what price would these items command?

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