A new coffee table book brings the careers of dozens of baseball greats to life through their cards—and the memories of a former player. Authors Tom and Ellen Zappala, PSA executive Joe Orlando and Boston Red Sox Hall of Famer Rico Petrocelli will officially unveil An All-Star’s Cardboard Memories at the National Sports Collectors Convention.
The fifth volume in a series of award-winning books, the new hardcover volume details the personalities, playing styles and baseball cards of 56 Hall of Famers who played from the 1960s through the late 1990s. The forward was written by Petrocelli’s Red Sox teammate, Jim Lonborg.
Petrocelli had the opportunity to play with or against many of the players during his long career, and offers his own observations, many of which you probably haven’t heard before:
- Petrocelli was there for Mickey Mantle’s last home run—a blast off Lonborg in late September of 1968 and also caught the last ball Mantle hit—a pop-up.
- The Red Sox tried to trade for Cubs’ third baseman Ron Santo in 1970
- Petrocelli homered off Hoyt Wilhelm as a rookie on a rare fastball from the knuckleball specialist. Wilhelm swore at him while he ran the bases.
Orlando, CEO of Collectors Universe, Inc. and president of PSA, offers insights on a pair of cards for each player in the book—“The Card” and “One to Watch”. The former discusses the card that the hobby at large considers the most important for that player. In most cases, this is the player’s mainstream rookie card, but there are a few exceptions to that rule. The “One to Watch” focuses on a different card of that player, often one of his rarest issues or an overlooked regional issue.
Petrocelli shares his memories of the Hall of Famers in an informal style, sharing insight on those he played with or against during the 1960s and 70s, as well as those he observed before or after his career.
The book is available now on Amazon.com and will also be for sale at the National. The Zappalas will be at PSA’s booth on Friday August 3 and Saturday August 4, talking with collectors and signing copies.
For more information or to order autographed copies by mail, visit TomZappalaMedia.com.