Monday, July 25, 2016

#447-448 Willie Stargell

Illustrious career of 21 seasons....whereas Joe Torre was baseball best hitter, Willie was probably most feared slugger in the MLB 1971 (I’d say the AL had an off year)....That year also starts a 3 year golden age, collecting 125 home run...but missed out on MVP, voted 2nd, 3rd, and 2nd.... Started out as a part timer in 1963, established himself the next seasons as a consistent 20+ homer muscle man....Power was enhanced by the move to Three Rivers Stadium in mid 1970, ggoing over the fence 31 times....So strong, so explosive with the bat....some home runs were monster shots, causing opposing teams to mark the landing area in their stadium....consistent seasons followed, until 1979....Willie win the triple crown of MVPs; season (shared with Keith Herandez), playoffs and World hitter in post season, but was most likely his leadership presence that gave him the award for the season...while the Pirates were very good in the 70’s, the 1979 was vindication since losing Roberto was his swan song, with playing a half season in 1980 and just a minority of next two seasons....HOF body of work, falling 25 home runs short of 500....hit over 40 home runs twice, 30+ four times, and 20+ nine times...overcame a very difficult childhood to become one of the great fatherly figures of the game....Pops passed away at very young age of 61.


  1. I think he passed away on the day PNC Park in Pittsburgh opened.

  2. Yes, it was date of the first official game. Thanks for writing. What a coincidence.