On this day in 1977 the MLB All Star Game was played at Yankee Stadium in New York. For me, the All Star Game was always the highlight of the summer. Getting to see all those great players in their colorful team uniforms was a special occasion.
Back in those days, games outside your local market was limited to the Saturday NBC Game of the Week and ABC’s Monday Night Baseball. On this night, I was staying at a friends house and we spent all day re-sorting our baseball cards, pulling out all the All Stars that were set to play in the game.
The 1977 All Star Game was a cornucopia of big league talent, featuring no less than 19 future Hall of Famers. Johnny Bench, Reggie Jackson, Rod Carew and Dave Parker were all there. However, no one star shined brighter than Cincinnati Reds second baseman Joe Morgan.
Although he was the smallest player on the field, “Little Joe” was dangerous. He had won two straight National League MVP awards season and led the Big Red Machine to two straight World Series rings. Leading off the game against future Hall of Famer Jim Palmer, Morgan blasted the sixth pitch of the game into the right field bleachers for a quick 1-0 lead. I just love Reggie Jackson’s helpless reaction as he leans against the outfield wall watching the ball fly over his head. By the end of the inning the NL had a 4-0 lead and never looked back.
After seeing the 2021 “All Star Game” uniforms last week, I was compelled to create some new card art to cleanse my palate from what I just saw and Joe Morgan (wearing red shoes that he couldn’t wear during a regular game) seemed like the logical choice.