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Babe Ruth’s salary wouldn’t buy his stuff back today

When he signed a $5,000 contract with the RedSox, Babe Ruth might never have guessed it would one day sell for more than $1 million.

The Pigtown native’s contract, as well as some other high-price-tag baseball memorabilia, went up for auction Saturday at the Sports Legends Museum at Camden Yards.

Ruth’s $5,000 salary would equate about $78,700 today, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ inflation calculator.

That’s not too far above the median household income in Maryland today of $72,999 (according to the Census Bureau). It’s not even enough to buy a bat Ruth used ($215,000) and a ball he signed ($96,000), both of which sold Saturday.

But the Sultan of Swat would probably make a fair bit more than that today, since the growth of sluggers’ salaries has far outpaced inflation. Last year, the average MLB player made $3.39 million. 

And it’s safe to say that The Great Bambino was well above average.