CHICAGO – Ralph DeSantis started taking a baseball signed by Barry Bonds to memorabilia shows a while back, hoping someone would meet his $150 asking price.
Two years later, no sale. DeSantis doesn’t figure he’ll do much better this weekend, either, now that baseball’s home run champion has been indicted.
“I’m probably overstocked with one baseball,” he said.
Bonds’ legal trouble isn’t likely to help the market for items with his autograph or picture, predicted dealers gathered in suburban Chicago for a big show.
“I think it will destroy it worse than it already (is),” DeSantis said.
Wes George, another dealer, is in the same situation. Only worse.
It seems he bought a dozen Bonds autographed bats and two dozen autographed balls about four years ago. He still has 10 of the balls and seven of the bats.
Bonds merchandise, he said, “is a very slow sell.”
George said the problem with Bonds merchandise is clear. “He’s the poster child, as it were, for the steroids era,” George said.
Added DeSantis: “People around the country just don’t like him.”