Tuesday, January 28, 2014

1970's "PLAYER OF THE DECADE"- PETE ROSE

I was always interested in the guys who were selected "Player of the Decade" by the Sporting News.
The way I figured it, any player who could dominate an entire decade was something for history to always look back on in awe.
In the 1950's it was Stan Musial, in the 1960's it was Willie Mays, and in the 1970's it was none other than Pete Rose.
So I went ahead and imagined a Topps card in 1979 celebrating his hard-won achievement, using a photo that showed him in a Reds' uniform smack in the middle of the decade (1976), even though by then he was playing for the Philadelphia Phillies.
Take a look:

"Charlie Hustle"- Player of the 1970's.

I used the "guts" of the Topps Record Breaker card of 1979, and rebuilt it to come up with this design.
I know I would have loved to pull a card like this out of a pack back then...

In a decade where we had future powerhouse Hall of Famers like Johnny Bench, Tom Seaver, and Reggie Jackson, Rose was the guy who came out in front of them all when it came time for the Sporting News to select someone who would represent the go-go '70's.
In the ten years spanning 1970-1979, he was on two world champion teams, four pennant winners, had six 200-hit seasons, and lead his league in no less than 13 offensive categories!
And that's not all: in NINE of those years he received Most Valuable Player consideration, taking home the award in 1973.
However, sadly we all know where Rose would take his post-playing career, and he's still wallowing in baseball-limbo, wondering if he'll ever get into the Hall.
Oh well, not for me to get into here.
But at least I can leave you with a Pete Rose card that "should-have-been"!

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