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Sports Then and Now



Willie McCovey 0

Posted on July 14, 2009 by Dean Hybl

Willie McCovey

Willie McCovey

Each week Sports Then and Now will recognize a Vintage Athlete of the Week. The purpose of this weekly post will be to celebrate and re-visit the accomplishments of notable athletes from past generations.

In honor of the Major League Baseball All-Star Game, our first Athlete of the Week is a baseball great who was the hero of the Midsummer Classic 40 years ago.

Despite his immense stature (6-foot-4, 210 pounds), Willie McCovey was often overshadowed by more flamboyant teammates. He truly epitomized the concept of speaking softly and carrying a big stick as McCovey blasted 521 home runs during his 22-year major league career.

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  • Vintage Athlete of the Month

    • Rusty Staub: A Man For All Ages
      April 8, 2024 | 1:26 pm
      Rusty Staub

      The Sports Then and Now Vintage Athlete of the Month is a former major league baseball player who came into the game as a teenager and stayed until he was in his 40s. In between, Rusty Staub put up a solid career that was primarily spent on expansion or rebuilding teams.

      Originally signed by the Colt .45s at age 17, he made his major league debut as a 19-year old rookie and became only the second player in the modern era to play in more than 150 games as a teenager.

      Though he hit only .224 splitting time between first base and rightfield, Staub did start building a foundation that would turn him into an All-Star by 1967 when he finished fifth in the league with a .333 batting average.

      Read more »

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