Monday, November 8, 2010

Try the "Veale"

Here's a pitcher who was one of the hardest-throwing hurlers of the 1960s:

Card #518 -- Bob Veale, Boston Red Sox

Bob Veale finished the 1972 season with Boston after eleven years in Pittsburgh. He still holds the Pirates' single-season strikeout record with the 276 he notched in 1965. He won the 1964 National League K title in dramatic fashion, beating out Bob Gibson on the final day of the season. While with the Pirates, he was part of a rotation that included (Bob) Moose, (John) Lamb and Veale.

He was sold to the Red Sox on September 2, 1972. Interestingly, Topps was able to get a picture of Veale in his new uniform in the short month he spent with his new team when they weren't always able to get updated photos for other players who had spent most of '72 on their new teams. The picture appears to be a late-season shot at Fenway Park, with Veale wearing a windbreaker under his home uniform (see below for the reason those were struck out). Veale would remain with the Red Sox as a reliever through 1974.

Veale was born on October 28, 1935. Which means he just turned 75!

(Edited to add: A couple of comments below brought up a couple of corrections to the original post. First, the picture appears to have been taken at Memorial Stadium in Baltimore. Secondly, even though he wears a white jersey, it says "Boston" across the front. The Red Sox used the city name on their road uniforms. Thanks for the corrections!)


  1. I never knew Veale had a strikeout season like that. My knowledge of '60s baseball kind of begins and ends with the Dodgers. I have to fix that.

  2. It is interesting they got a shot of Veale during the last month of the season with his new team. The picture was actually taken in Baltimore at Memorial Stadium. Boston played in Baltimore the very last weekend of the 1972 season on Sept 29 - Oct 1, so Topps did get this shot almost literally at the end of the season.

    Bob pitched 1 inning in the Sept 30 game and got a save by striking out the only 2 batters he faced (both future managers - Johnny Oates and Dave Johnson).

  3. Memorial Stadium, you say? It looks like he's wearing a Red Sox home uniform.

    However, I did say "appears to" in reference to Fenway as I don't see the Green Monster over in left field. So I did have suspicions.

  4. I'd say it is definitely Memorial Stadium from the look. Plus, the uniform says "Boston" across the front, so that's a road uniform.

  5. And here I was thinking the BoSox's road unis were always gray. Yep, that's definitely a road uni, thanks for the info!

    I'll update the blog.

  6. I like Veale's cards from the 1960s, where he's sporting those silver wide-framed glasses.

  7. Veale had some great specs in the '60s. Here's a whole post on them: