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Price: $200.00


Willie Stargell 1979 Pittsburgh Pirates Autographed Signed ONL Baseball COA HOF 88 DECEASED

Willie signed this a few months before he passed away.  He didn't have much strength to get a bold signature on the baseball and, perhaps, he used a poor pen.  The signature and inscription that I paid for, are very light.   Either way, it's priced right and should work well in your collection until you can upgrade it with a NM-Mint one down the road.  This autographed baseball has been stored in a cool, dry space since signed and out of any direct light.

Autographed baseballs by the late, Willie Stargell with the HOF 88 inscription are drying up...get one now while the price is still reasonable.

Single signed baseball by former 1979 World Champion Pittsburgh Pirate and DECEASED Hall of Famer...Willie Stargell.

In December of 2000, I was monitoring the money in my savings account and noticed that the interest was next to nothing.  I decided to pull out serious chunk of change and invest in some autographs of the great Pittsburgh Pirate...Willie Stargell.  This autographed baseball is coming from that purchase. 

Willie began his career in 1962 with the Pittsburgh Pirates.  He played his entire career with the Pirates 1962-82.  Willie was originally scheduled to appear at the Collector's Showcase of America Sports Card & Memorabilia Show at the Capital Expo Center in Chantilly, Virginia on Saturday October 21, 2000.  Due to health problems, Willie had to cancel his appearance at the show and all mail order autographs that were received by Collector's Showcase were taken to Willie's home for a private signing on Tuesday December 12, 2000.

Willie was named to 7 NL All-Star teams, was named the 1979 National League Co-MVP with Keith Hernandez, led the National League in HR's on 2 different occasions, was a member of the World Champion Pittsburgh Pirate teams of 1971 and 1979, hit a total of 475 career HR's and was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1988.  Willie signed the sweet spot of this ONL Leonard S. Coleman baseball with a blue ballpoint pen and he also inscribed underneath his name, "H.O.F. 88", to note his accomplishment.  He signed this baseball on December 12, 2000. 

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia...

Wilver Dornel "Willie" Stargell (March 6, 1940 – April 9, 2001), nicknamed "Pops" in the later years of his career, was a professional baseball player who played his entire Major League career (1962-1982) with the Pittsburgh Pirates as an outfielder and first baseman.

Over his 21-year career with the Pirates, he batted .282, with 2,232 hits, 423 doubles, 475 home runs and 1540 runs batted in, helping his team capture six National League East division titles, two National League pennants and two World Series (1971, 1979).

Stargell was born in Earlsboro, Oklahoma, but later moved to Alameda, California where he attended Encinal High School. He was signed by the Pirates at age 18, and made his Major League debut at the end of the 1962 season. He soon became a standout player, making his first of 7 trips to the All-Star Game in 1964.

In 1973 Stargell achieved the rare feat of simultaneously leading the league in both doubles and homers, with more than 40 of each; the last player to chalk up this 40-40 accomplishment was Hank Greenberg in 1940.

In 1979 Stargell earned the NLCS, World Series, and National League MVP (the latter being shared with Keith Hernandez), the only player to have won all three in a single year. He shared the Sports Illustrated magazine's "Sportsmen of the Year" award with NFL quarterback Terry Bradshaw, who also played at Three Rivers Stadium, for the Pittsburgh Steelers. Beloved in Pittsburgh for his style of play and affable manner, Stargell was known throughout baseball for hitting monstrous home runs, including 7 of the 16 balls ever hit completely out of Forbes Field and several of the upper-tier home runs at its successor, Three Rivers Stadium. At one time, he held the record for the longest homer in nearly half of the National League parks.

He also originated the practice of giving his teammates "stars" for their caps. Upon a good play or game, Stargell would give fellow players an embroidered star to place on their caps, which at the time were "throwback" caps. These stars became known as "Stargell Stars".

Also, when Stargell would hit a homerun, Bob Prince, the colorful and long-term Pirate radio announcer would say "Chicken on the Hill". This stemmed from Stargell's ownership of a chicken restaurant in Pittsburgh's Hill District. For a time, when he blasted a homer, they would give away free chicken, hence "Chicken on the Hill with Will".

After retirement, Stargell spent several years as a coach for the Atlanta Braves. In 1988, Stargell was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in his first year of eligibility. In 1999, he ranked Number 81 on The Sporting News' list of the 100 Greatest Baseball Players, and was nominated as a finalist for the Major League Baseball All-Century Team. He died of a stroke in Wilmington, North Carolina at the age of 61, on the day a larger-than-life statue of him was unveiled at the Pirates' new stadium, PNC Park.


Other “Stargellesque” Home Runs

In addition to Forbes Field and Three Rivers Stadium, Stargell also hit some of the longest home runs at several other parks:
•Stargell hit two of the (currently) only four home runs ever hit completely out of Dodger Stadium. The first came on August 5, 1969 off Alan Foster and measured 506 feet—to date, the longest home run ever hit at the park. The second came on May 8, 1973 off Andy Messersmith; it measured 473 feet.
•In 1978, against Steve Rogers of the Montreal Expos, Stargell hit a home run into the upper deck of Olympic Stadium, the only fair ball ever hit there.
•Stargell also hit the longest home run ever hit at Veterans Stadium. The spot where the ball landed was marked with a yellow star with a black "S" inside a white circle. After Stargell's death, the white circle was painted black and remained there until the stadium's 2004 demolition.


Quotations about Stargell
•"I never saw anything like it. He doesn't just hit pitchers, he takes away their dignity." - Don Sutton
•"If he asked us to jump off the Fort Pitt Bridge, we would ask him what kind of dive he wanted. That's how much respect we have for the man." - Pirates teammate Al Oliver
•"Having him (Willie Stargell) on your ball club is like having a diamond ring on your finger." - Pirates manager Chuck Tanner


Stargell's own quotations
•"The (umpire) says 'play' ball, not 'work' ball."
•"Trying to hit Sandy Koufax was like trying to drink coffee with a fork."
•"Throwing a knuckleball for a strike is like throwing a butterfly with hiccups across the street into your neighbor's mailbox."
•"Now I know why they boo Richie (controversial star Dick Allen) all the time. When he hits a home run, there's no souvenir." - After Allen, also well known for mammoth home runs and not very beloved by Philadelphia Phillies fans, once hit a ball over the left-center field roof of Philadelphia's Connie Mack Stadium.

•Baseball Hall of Fame Inductee (1988)
•Co-National League MVP (shared with Keith Hernandez, 1979)
•7-time Top 10 MVP (1971-75, 1978-79)
•7-time All-Star (1964-66, 1971-73, 1978)
•National League Championship Series MVP (1979)
•World Series MVP (1979)
•ABC's Wide World of Sports Athlete of the Year (1979)
•Led National League in Slugging Percentage (1973)
•Twice led National League in OPS (1973-74)
•Led National League in Doubles (1973)
•Twice led National League in Home Runs (1971 and 1973)
•Led National League in RBI (1973)
•Twice led National League in Extra-Base Hits (1971 and 1973)
•Hit for the cycle (1964)

Lifetime guarantee in regards to this autographed baseball which also comes with a COA from Gearhart Enterprises, Inc. Member of the UACC. UACC Registered Dealer #RD189.