Ozzie Smith, perhaps the best defensive shortstop in baseball history, is auctioning off lots of hard-earned hardware, including Gold Gloves, All-Star Game rings, World Series championship rings with the St. Louis Cardinals and more, according to ESPN.com.
Available for the right price are Smith’s 13 Gold Gloves, 11 All-Star Game rings, the World Series rings he got for the 2006 and 2011 Cardinals championships and his Roberto Clemente and Lou Gehrig Awards, according to the site.Th
The mass paraphernalia sale is for “estate and family planning,” the site reported, saying it was unaware if Smith had financial concerns. He earned just under $32 million in his career, accoring to Baseball-Reference.com.
The site speculated that auctioning the items could be just to help set up funding for posterity, and not for Smith personally. No further details are available, but any sort of personal money woes would be relatively surprising.
Smith, 57, retired after the 1996 season and has had various entrepreneur ventures — like a restaurant and salad dressing — since his playing days.
Smith was the Cardinals special instructor during this past spring training.
Meanwhile, college basketball Hall of Fame coach Bob Knight said he selling his championship basketball rings and Olympic gold medal for the education of his grandchildren.
A collection of the former coach’s memorabilia will be auctioned by Steiner Sports Memorabilia. It’s part of a sale that features the jersey Yankees pitcher Don Larsen wore while pitching a perfect game in the World Series.
“John Havlicek and I were just talking one day about all the stuff we had accumulated over the years,” Knight said Monday from the Denver airport, referring to his college teammate at Ohio State who went on to a Hall of Fame career with the Boston Celtics. “As we talked we decided the money could be very useful to put our grandchildren through college.”
The auction, which has already started for some items, runs through Dec. 5 and will feature Knight’s rings from his three NCAA championship teams at Indiana — the undefeated 1976 season and the ones from 1981 and 1987.
The company will also sell a sports coat and a warmup jacket given to Knight as coach of the gold medal-winning U.S. Olympic team in 1984.
“I’ve got stuff I didn’t even know I had,” Knight said. “I don’t put anything up in the house. If you came into the house you would think I was a mailman. And I don’t even wear rings.”