The black Mizuno glove that hung over the wall in right field at Yankee Stadium in 1996 and still lingers in the nightmares of Baltimore baseball fans nearly 20 years later is up for auction.
Yes, Orioles fans, if you want, you can purchase Jeffrey Maier’s infamous glove that turned a fly ball by Derek Jeter into a home run and perhaps turned the tide of the 1996 American League Championship Series.
Heritage Auctions, which refers to itself as the world’s largest collectibles auctioneer, is running an online auction of the glove this week through Friday and a “floor auction” from Saturday to Sunday (clandestine bids can be placed online to compete with the live auction).
The top bid for the glove was at $13,000 by mid-afternoon Monday.
Maier, who was 12 at the time, has provided notarized authenticity that this was the glove he used to deflect a fly ball by Derek Jeter into the right-field stands for a game-tying home run in Game 1 of the 1996 ALCS on Oct. 9. The Orioles ultimately lost the opener in 11 innings and the best-of-seven series in five games.
Orioles right fielder Tony Tarasco was camped underneath the ball and expected to catch it when it disappeared from sight on its way down. Tarasco immediately pointed upward at Maier and then argued with umpire Richie Garcia, who ruled that it was a homer. Replays showed Maier clearly had reached over the wall to glove the ball.
Maier became an overnight sensation in New York and a pariah in Baltimore. He later went on to play college baseball and is now a businessman in New England.
The glove does not come with the home run ball, however. Maier actually never caught it; it caromed off his glove and into the stands where another patron jumped on it.