WASHINGTON — The U.S. Mint today began selling the 2014 Baseball Hall of Fame Commemorative Coin, the first curved coin issued in the mint’s history.
Sales of the $5 gold coin, $1 silver coin and half-dollar alloy-clad coin will benefit the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum in Cooperstown, which is celebrating its 75th anniversary this year.
U.S. Mint officials unveiled the coins at a news conference today in the U.S. Capitol with U.S. Rep. Richard Hanna .R-Barneveld, and U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., who sponsored the National Baseball Hall of Fame Commemorative Coin Act in 2011 and 2012 to authorize the coins.
The coins depict a baseball glove on the obverse (heads side) and a baseball on the reverse (tails) side. The U.S. Mint sponsored a nationwide competition in 2013 for the coin’s design. The winner was Cassie McFarland of San Luis Obispo, Calif.
U.S. Mint Sculptor-Engraver Don Everhart designed the baseball and the inscriptions on both sides of the coins.
Officials from the Baseball Hall of Fame joined two of its inductees — second baseman Joe Morgan and third baseman Brooks Robinson — at the Capitol today to unveil the coins. Online sales began at noon. As of 2 p.m. those seeking to buy the coins were directed to a virtual waiting room because of high-traffic volume on the mint’s website. The wait was more than an hour.
Orders also will be accepted by phone at 1-800-USA-MINT (872-6468), and hearing- and speech-impaired customers with TTY equipment may order at 1-888-321-MINT. There is a shipping and handling fee of $4.95 per order.
Due to the high demand, the U.S. Mint has placed a limit on each order of 50 coins for the $5 gold coin, 100 coins for the silver dollars and 100 coins for the half-dollar coins.
“We had anticipated strong interest in this coin from the outset,” said U.S. Mint Deputy Director Dick Peterson. “However, the interest in the past few days prior to the coin even going on sale has caused us to take this action. We will evaluate these ordering limits on a regular basis and adjust or remove them accordingly.”
Surcharges on the coins are $35 per gold coin, $10 per silver coin and $5 for each half-dollar coin. The surcharge is donated to the non-profit Baseball Hall of Fame.