Category Archives: Willie McCovey Collection

Baseball Card Show Purchase #2 – Willie McCovey 2001 Fleer Greats

Baseball Card Show Purchase #2 – Willie McCovey 2001 Fleer Greats

I’ve always been a sucker for the ‘Fleer Greats’ set.  If I run into one that I don’t already have, I am pretty much guaranteed that I will be buying it.

Especially when the card is in a ‘Dime Bin’.

This time around, while sifting through modern cards, I found a card of Willie McCovey from the 2001 Fleer Greats set.

Have a look:

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Lovin’ It!!  I really like how the player’s image really stands out on these cards.  And the bat and ball logo in the lower-left corner has always been a favorite of mine.

Give me a few hours – I nabbed another card from this set of one of my favorite hitters.  It’s a doozie!

1980 HEADLINE: Willie McCovey Homers For The Last Time Of His Major League Career

1980 HEADLINE: Willie McCovey Homers For The Last Time Of His Major League Career

On this day in 1980, slugger Willie McCovey hit the final home run of his amazing career. Spanning 22 years, McCovey blasted 521 round-trippers during his playing days. His 521 ranks on the all-time list at 18th place in major league history.

The shot, a blast off of Expos’ hurler Scott Sanderson, came in the 4th inning of the ballgame and was the difference in the Giant’s 3-2 win that day.

Happy Anniversary Mr. McCovey!!

Willie McCovey’s Classic & Highly Sought After 1960 Topps Rookie Card

Willie McCovey’s Classic & Highly Sought After 1960 Topps Rookie Card

I love vintage baseball cards.  I appreciate vintage baseball cards.

I just wish that this was a better example of a vintage baseball card that I like…

And while I would never say ‘No’ to adding a rookie card of Mr. McCovey into my collection, it would definitely not qualify as one of the better looking cards from the 60′s in my collection.

It’s not his fault though…  Topps just didn’t provide us with the best design or quality – that’s all.

The picture was obviously taken during Spring Training, and those empty bleachers don’t help the background.  As for the Green and Yellow that overwhelm the right-side of the card, it is just a bit too bold and loud for me.  The All-Star trophy helps calm it down – but not enough to win this collector over…

Still, when talking about the best rookie cards from the early 196o’s, Willie McCovey’s card from the ’61 Topps set is a ‘Must Have’.

I know that I wish I did…

Willie McCovey And His Hall Of Fame Plaque

Willie McCovey And His Hall Of Fame Plaque

The plaque reads:

“Top left handed home run hitter in NL history with 521.  Second only to Lou Gehrig with 18 Grand Slams, Led NL in homers three times and RBI twice.  NL Rookie of Year in 1959, MVP in 1969, and Comeback player of the year in ’77.  Teamed with Willie Mays for awesome 1-2 punch in Giants’ lineup.”

Willie McCovey’s Classic Signature

Willie McCovey’s Classic Signature

Not very artsy, but there is a solid flow to it, Willie McCovey offers us up a very solid signature.

And while not the most clear, especially his last name, the auto is still unmistakable.

And I am really digging the ‘Mc’ as the centerpiece!!!

I am so happy to have one of these in my collection!!!

Willie McCovey Has Statues & Bodies Of Water That Bear His Name!!!

Willie McCovey Has Statues & Bodies Of Water That Bear His Name!!!

Everyone in baseball knows about ‘McCovey Cove’.  Heck, it’s the main reason that I want to go to San Francisco and take in a game.

Named, for Willie McCovey, I wonder how many home runs ‘Stretch’ would have hit had he played there…

One of the most unique and incredible scenes in all of baseball:

And then there is the statue of McCovey that is proudly on display for any and all visitors to the SF area to visit.

Easily one of the most picturesque statues if all of baseball, the statue is flanked by the beauty of the Pacific Ocean.

And the view is incredible!!!

Truly amazing.

I’ve got to get there!!!

Willie McCovey Is A Valued Member Of The ’500 Home Run Club’

Willie McCovey Is A Valued Member Of The ’500 Home Run Club’

Willie McCovey was a slugger.  And while he had some outstanding success as a hitter for average, it was his ability to hit the long-ball that drove Giants’ fans crazy.

McCovey crushed 40 or more home runs twice during his career.  And he hit 30 or more dingers an additional 5 times.  In total – 521 balls flew over outfield walls due to his mighty swing.

521 home runs is good for 18th place on the all-time list.  Not too shabby…

Willie McCovey’s MVP Season Of 1969

Willie McCovey’s MVP Season Of 1969

Willie McCovey had some spectacular seasons during his 22-year baseball career.

But the one he is most known for came in 1969 – when he won the National League’s Most Valuable Player award.

In ’69, he had an on-base percentage of 45.3% – almost unheard of from a slugger.  McCovey connected for 45 home runs in 1969 while driving in 126 runs and scoring another 101.  He drew 121 walks en route to collecting 157 hits alongside his .320 batting average.

Due in part to his amazing success in 1969, McCovey’s Giants finished 90-72, good for 2nd place in the NL West.

Willie McCovey Is A 6-Time All-Star

Willie McCovey Is A 6-Time All-Star

I’m amazed at how few times some of the game’s brightest stars made the All-Star team back during the 1960′s.  I need to do a little research to see how the All-Stars were chosen back then…

McCovey made the squad six times.  Six times in a 9-year span to be exact.  And while six All-Star appearances is nothing to shake a stick at, it is far from spectacular.  But then you have to think about all of the guys that ‘Stretch’ was competing with for a spot on the NL squad.  There was Ernie Banks and Orlando Cepeda and Richie Allen – all incredible players.  And back then the teams only carried one reserve at first base so space was extremely limited…

Nonetheless, McCovey found himself in great company on those very talented rosters.  And while he probably did not make as many teams as he should have, he certainly was one of the best from his era!

Willie McCovey And The 1959 Rookie Of The Year Award

Willie McCovey And The 1959 Rookie Of The Year Award

Willie McCovey made his major league debut with the Giants in 1959.  And it took just 52 games during that year for him to solidify his spot as the National League’s best rookie.

In 192 official at-bats, McCovey amassed a batting average of .354.  He collected 6 hits which included 9 doubles, 5 triples, and 13 home runs.  He also accounted for scoring 32 runs while driving in an additional 38 for the ‘G-Men’.

Did I mention that McCovey won the Rookie of the Year award by collecting every first-place vote?  Yep.  He was the unanimous selection back in ’59.

Congratulations ‘Stretch’!!!