With the influx and success of reality shows such as “Pawn Stars” and “Hardcore Pawn”–shows where people bring in unusual items looking to make a buck–it was only inevitable that this idea would swing into the sports memorabilia area.
While not exactly an original idea, the Discovery Channel started a series centered on this subject back in January called “All Star Dealers." ABC is kicked off it's own show on Saturday called “Ball Boys”
“Ball Boys” centers on a small sports memorabilia shop outside Baltimore called Robbie's First Base, which is run by Robbie Davis Sr. and Robbie Davis Jr. The show, following the popular formula of “Pawn Stars” will mix in a nice blend of interesting merchandise along with a colorful behind-the-scenes take. The unique items involved, along with the shows interesting stars, are sure to bring entertaining negotiations and sports debates.
“When you see a game-used Babe Ruth jersey, that means he was in it,” said Robbie Davis Jr., who helps run the store with his father. “If you see a Jackie Robinson game-used bat, that means he touched it. It’s getting a piece of the player that you’ll never get to see again.”
“Ball Boys”, unlike “All Star Dealers”, will actually focus on the history surrounding the items as opposed to lightly glossing over them. An example is in the premier episode,where according to an early review, a customer comes in to sell a football helmet signed by the great Jim Brown. To authenticate this, the Davis's actually have Jim Brown come in to verify it.
Jim Browns's appearance isn't going to be the lone sports star appearance either, as shown in the shows trailer. Other former athletes such as baseball's all-time hits leader Pete Rose, Hall of Fame quarterback Warren Moon, and former NBA guard and current ESPN basketball analyst Jalen Rose all make appearances.
With the proper mix of sports history, sports stars, and an entertaining cast, “Ball Boys” is worth checking out.