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Flood and Hall of Famers Dimaggio, Banks, Fingers and McCovey sign a Rawlings Official American League Baseball (Brown).

Price: $500.00

Condition: Lightly soiled, otherwise fine condition
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Flood and Hall of Famers Dimaggio, Banks, Fingers and McCovey sign a Rawlings Official American League Baseball (Brown).
Baseball signed: "Curt Flood", "Willie McCovey" on the sweet spot, "To/Greg:/Best Wishes/Joe Dimaggio", "Rollie Fingers" and "Ernie Banks", Rawlings Official American League Baseball, Bobby Brown, President. CURT FLOOD (1938-1997) played Major League Baseball from 1956 to 1969, and made a brief reappearance in 1971. Flood was a reliable hitter who topped .300 three times in an era when pitching dominated the game. But Flood's greatest talent was in centerfield, which he roamed for the St Louis Cardinals, beginning in 1958. One of the finest defensive players of any era, Flood had 223 consecutive games without an error, and made no errors at all in 1966. A three-time All-Star, he won seven consecutive Gold Glove awards. He played in all seven games of three World Series for the Cardinals: victories over the Yankees and Red Sox in 1964 and 1967, and a loss to the Tigers in 1968. He was one of only four Cardinals to appear on all three teams. After the 1969 season, the Cardinals traded Flood to the Phillies. Flood refused to go, and challenged the "reserve clause" which had long denied players the right to negotiate with multiple teams for the best offer. He sat out the 1970 season, taking his suit against Major League Baseball and Commissioner Bowie Kuhn all the way to the Supreme Court. The Major League Players Association endorsed his suit, but not one active player was willing to appear in court on his behalf. With former Supreme Court Justice Arthur Goldberg as his lawyer, Flood lost by a 5-3 vote in the Supreme Court. He made a brief return to baseball with the Washington Senators in 1971, but his skills were gone, and he soon retired. Flood fought law suits and the Internal Revenue Service for the rest of his life. In 1975, an arbiter voided the reserve clause in cases involving two other players, and the era of free agency began. Flood had been five years ahead of his time. WILLIE McCOVEY (1938-2018), a National League Rookie of the Year (1959) and Most Valuable Player (1969), led the league in home runs three times and appeared in six All-Star games. Pitcher Bob Gibson called him "the scariest hitter in baseball." "Stretch" McCovey, who played for the San Francisco Giants most of his career, was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1986. JOE DIMAGGIO played centerfield for the New York Yankees from 1936-1942 and 1946-1951 with a lifetime batting average of .325. The Hall of Famer was elected to the All-Star team every year he played (the only player to achieve this distinction). He was American League batting champion in 1939 and 1940 and home run leader in 1948. He holds the major league consecutive game-hitting streak of 56 (1941), called baseball's greatest feat by many. He was Most Valuable Player in 1939, 1941, and 1947. At Baseball's 1969 Centennial Celebration, he was named the game's greatest living player. His brothers Dom and Vince were quality Major Leaguers outfielders too.DiMaggio's stormy marriage to Marilyn Monroe (1954) lasted less than a year, but DiMaggio never remarried, and had roses delivered to her crypt three times a week for 20 years. ROLLIE FINGERS played for the Oakland Athletics from 1968 to 1976. The pitcher also played for the San Diego Padres (1977-1980) and the Milwaukee Brewers (1981-1985) during his 17-year major league career. Fingers, who was known for his sharp slider, notched 341 career saves and appeared in 16 World Series games. In 1981, he won both the American League MVP and Cy Young Award. Fingers was elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1992. ERNIE BANKS (1931-2015) will always be "Mr. Cub," the most popular player the Cubs ever had. He played for the Cubs his entire career (1953-1971), retiring with 512 lifetime home runs. The first black player on the Cubs, Banks came up as a shortstop, where he won consecutive MVP awards, but actually played more games at first base. He led the League in home runs in 1958 and 1960 and in RBIs 1958-59. Banks was All-Star eleven times, was MVP in 1958-59 and won a Gold Glove in 1960. He was the first Cub to have his number retired (1971), and was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1977. Floods signature lightly smudged (still legible). Lightly soiled. Otherwise, fine condition.

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