On the blog today, we move on to the National League's starting first baseman in the classic 1971 All-Star game, "Stretch" Willie McCovey:
Celebrating what is now considered one of the historic moments in the game's evolution, the 1971 Midsummer Classic was a turning point where the "old" eased into the "new". A passing of the torch in a sense of the country's cultural change, with old stars such as Aaron, Mays, et. al. handing it all over to the "new", like Reggie Jackson, Vida Blue and Johnny Bench.
As for McCovey, he was one of the "tweens" in this scenario, as he was already a 12 year veteran of the game, but somehow was a new breed of player that brought a refreshing change to the Major League landscape.
McCovey was three years removed from his MVP season of 1969 when this card would have been out, but still a feared hitter terrorizing N.L. pitching.
It was his fourth straight All-Star game, and and sixth overall, and he'd even get some MVP support at season's end, with a 15th place finish in the voting.
By the time he retired in 1980, he crushed 521 home runs, collected over 2000 hits, drove in over 1500, and left his mark as one of the most feared sluggers of his generation.
In 1986, his first year of eligibility, he was voted into the Hall of Fame with 81.4% of the ballots cast.Man, what a threesome McCovey, Willie Mays and Orlando Cepeda made back in the 1960's for San Francisco, huh?