Chicago Cubs: Big money in broken bats, programs and memorabilia

CHICAGO, IL - JULY 01: Bats and helmuts are seen in the dugout of the Chicago White Sox before a game against the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on July 1, 2011 in Chicago, Illinois. The White Sox defeated the Cubs 6-4. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, IL - JULY 01: Bats and helmuts are seen in the dugout of the Chicago White Sox before a game against the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on July 1, 2011 in Chicago, Illinois. The White Sox defeated the Cubs 6-4. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images) /
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Mike’s days of collecting may be over as MLB makes a dramatic change in protecting their brand. During the 1990s there were so many forgeries and fake items hitting the market that the league decided to start putting hologram coded stickers on any authentic merchandise.

Authenticators were hired by MLB to start sticking and logging anything that was sellable Springer said, and they’ve been at it ever since.

"For every game during the regular season and playoffs, MLB’s authenticators are ready to certify items with tamper-proof hologram stickers. They’ll tag bats, balls, bases, jerseys, retired pieces of the Green Monster, champagne bottles from playoff celebrations — pretty much, you name it and MLB will authenticate it."

Just a quick look at the Cubs memorabilia in the MLB store shows seats from Wrigley Field, a three-time World Series Champion collectible frame with coins and ticket stubs, signed balls, an Anthony Rizzo signed bat and a Javier Baez signed glove – to mention a few of the highlights. All of these items have been authenticated and logged in the MLB database, which is becoming the new standard of authenticity. But what does this re-claiming of the brand mean for private collectors?

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