Sunday, June 26, 2011

1967 Topps. Roberto Clemente, the transcendent All-Star.

July 11, 1967
This game featured twenty future Hall Of Famers and Pete Rose. One of the twenty was batting second and playing Right Field for the National League. Number 21, Roberto Clemente, appearing in his eight consecutive All-Star game.

Inexplicably, Clemente struck out four times in this exhibition game. How improbable was that? Headed into the All-Star game Clemente had played 1,749 games and only ONCE had he struck out four times in a game! And it was none other than Don Drysdale who struck him out all four times.

Compared to Don Drysdale let's look at the four different pitchers who struck out Clemente four times.  Dean Chance, Gary Peters, Al Downing & Jim 'Catfish' Hunter. 

Aside from Catfish Hunter the other three pitchers combined played in five All-Star games. Even when having a bad day with a national audience watching Clemente managed to do something special.

About the Card

Roberto Clemente was blessed to play baseball at the highest level. And he played it at a level so seldom seen that they built a museum for these men long before called the Hall of Fame but had that museum not been built, it surely would have been, after watching Clemente play and live his life.

This BVG 9 slab sold for $641.78 at auction on eBay from mandlcards on May 16, 2011.
Worth every penny.

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