A hardball smooched by Marilyn Monroe -- and autographed by her man Joe DiMaggio -- is up for auction next month.
A record price of $190,000 was paid for a ball signed by Monroe and DiMaggio in 2006, and although this item at Heritage Auctions isn't expected to bring in nearly as much, it's got a great tale to tell.
The ball includes 26 signatures from the world champion 1952 Yankees, including a rookie Mickey Mantle, Yogi Berra, Phil Rizzuto and Billy Martin.
It was originally presented to the championship team of the Twentieth Century Fox Intramural Softball League. In those days, each team was sponsored by one of the studio's stars, and Marilyn represented this winning team.
As a reward for her club's title, Monroe pulled a few strings with Joltin' Joe to get a ball signed by the 1952 Bronx Bombers. She left the sweet spot for herself, and she left a thick imprint of lipstick.
While some of the remnants of the kiss faded over the years, Monroe's piece of memorabilia is expected to fetch over $20,000 at auction.
Here are a few other collectibles available for bid at the 2011 August Sports Platinum Auction:
• A 1908 game-worn Cy Young Boston Red Sox uniform and described as "the most important Cy Young artifact ever offered at auction." It is estimated at $350,000 or more.
• One of baseball's most famous and important game-used bats, known as "Black Betsy." It was used by the legendary "Shoeless Joe" Jackson throughout his career and has a pre-auction estimate of $300,000 or more.
• A uniform worn by Lou Gehrig during a baseball tour of Japan in 1934 that was saved by Gehrig's mother and willed to Gehrig's former girlfriend. She stored it in an attic and it only reappeared recently. It's expected to bring $300,000 or more.
• A baseball President Ronald Reagan mistakenly autographed "Reagan Reagan" in 1984 is estimated at $10,000 or more.