PLAYER: Fred Merkle (RC)
TEAM: New York Giants
BACK: Uzit (6/39)
GRADE: PSA 2 G (2286-0727)
An extremely pleasing example of New York Giants First Baseman Fred Merkle. The card features the Uzit advertising reverse (ranked 6 of 39 in terms of scarcity according to T206 Resource). One of the great treasures of the Monster, the Uzit.
Frederick Charles Merkle
Born: December 20, 1888 – Watertown, WI
Died: March 2, 1956 – Daytona Beach, FL
Career BA: .273
New York Giants NL (1907–1916)
Brooklyn Robins NL (1916–1917)
Chicago Cubs NL (1917–1920)
New York Yankees AL (1925–1926)
In 1908, Fred Merkle was 19 years old, the youngest player in the National League. He only had 35 MLB games under his belt when he became part of one of the most controversial plays in baseball history. On September 23, 1908, while running from first, he allegedly failed to touch second base on an apparent game-winning hit against the Cubs. As fans stormed the field, thinking the game was won, Johnny Evers of the Cubs retrieved the ball (or, to hear some tell it, a ball) and touched second base. Umpire Hank O’Day called Merkle out, nullifying the winning run, and called the game a draw, which led to a playoff game for the pennant. The Giants lost. Many question whether Evers actually had the game ball when he touched second base, and various arguments about “Merkle’s Boner” continue to this day. At 6 feet 1 inch, and 190 pounds, Merkle was one of the fastest big men in the game, and stole 20 or more bases on eight occasions. He was seventh in MVP voting in 1911 with a .283 batting average, 12 home runs, 84 RBI, and 49 stolen bases. After his MLB days, Merkle managed the Reading Keystones in the International League before retiring from the game in 1927.
An excerpt from the hit book “The T206 Collection – The Players & Their Stories” by Tom & Ellen Zappala. Click HERE to order the SECOND EDITION