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Jimmy Palermo, during a historic 7-day span in May, 1939, saw the meteoric rise of Williams and tragic decline of Gehrig.


An exclusive WIWAG ongoing feature.

The field seemed vast to a 7-year old who had looked forward to this day for two months.

The year marks the 60th anniversary of the first major league tryout for black players.


Bud Fowler is the first know black players on an integrated team.

of the '50s

Qualify as Grade A10.

First sports bar featured 12-inch Farnsworth TV.


Two unsuspecting vintage baseball fans rediscover a "National Treasure."
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ROSEN's choice of lumber is a Louisville Slugger (model O16) with barrel signature stamp.

THIS AL ROSEN MODEL was the first bat brought over from Sportsman's Park to the Original Sports Bar and the only American League entry in the BOOMING BATS of the '50s Commemorative Collection. Rosen — the 1953 American League MVP, home run and RBI leader — used this bat in the Indian's final trip to St. Louis in August of 1953 as the Browns moved to Baltimore to become the Orioles in 1954. The hard-hitting Cleveland third baseman had two hits and belted his 29th round-tripper of the season in the first game, an 8-7 win over the Browns. In the following day's double-header the Brownies swept the Tribe 7-6 and 7-5 despite Rosen's four hits and four RBIs for the day.

THE 1953 SEASON was Rosen's most productive offensive year. Al lead the league in home runs with 43 and the Major Leagues in RBIs with 145. He collected 201 hits and hit a robust .336, leaving him just .001 short of the batting title and the Triple Crown.


ALL-STAR: 1952, 1953, 1954, 1955


Rosen was the Major League's first unanimous MVP in 1953

"Flip" won the AL home run title with 43, and knocked in a Major League high 145 runs, but his .336 average left him just .0011 short of the Triple Crown.


IN HIS 10-year career Rosen had a lifetime batting average of .285, with 1,063 hits, 192 HRs and 717 RBIs.

Al Rosen began his Major League career on September 10, 1947 with the Cleveland Indians at the age of 24. He played for 10 seasons and ended his big league playing career in 1956. Having played parts of Major League seasons from 1947-49, Al became the Indians full-time third-baseman in 1950. "Flip" as he was fondly called by Tribe teammates, proceeded to drive in 100 or more runs for five consecutive seasons (l950-l954). He led the American League in RBIs in l952 (105) and l953 (145).

Rosen was the American League home run champion twice. In l950, still qualifying as a rookie, he hammered 37 round-trippers and was the first American League freshman to win the home run title. He won the American League home run title again in 1953 with 43 — just missing the Triple Crown when his .336 batting average fell .0011 short of Mickey Vernon's .337.

Rosen led the league in total bases in l952 and l953, as well as slugging percentage in l953. He was elected to the Major League all-star game four consecutive times, 1952-55, clubbing two home runs and five RBIs in the l954 contest at home at Cleveland's Municipal Stadium.

IN 1953, with his shirt sleeves cut to show his bulging biceps, Rosen led the American League in with 43 HRs and 145 RBIs — but lost the batting title to Mickey Vernon on the last day of the season by only .001.

When Rosen came up in 1947, his glove work was so bad that he posed no immediate threat to slick-fielding Indian third baseman Ken Keltner. But in 1950, Al's first full season, manager Lou Boudreau worked tirelessly with the young slugger to improve his skills at the hot corner and keep him in the line-up. All of the hard work payed off for everyone with Rosen contributing a league leading 37 home runs, driving in 116 runs and honing his fielding skills sufficiently to lead the league in assists. With his shirt sleeves cut to show his bulging (non-performance enhanced) biceps, he went on to average almost 30 home runs and 110 RBIs a season over the next six years.

Rosen was the unanimous 1953 MVP after one of the best seasons in history in which he also lead the American League in runs, time on base, extra base hits, slugging, runs, OPS and total bases. In his 10 year career he had a lifetime batting average of .285, with 1,063 hits, 192 HRs and 717 RBIs.

Rosen's offensive performance fell off in 1956 due to nagging injuries, including whiplash suffered in an auto accident. When the not so empathetic Cleveland fans started booing the sensitive star for what they unjustly perceived as a lack of effort and toughness, Rosen quit baseball at age 32 to sell stocks and bonds. He was a very intelligent man and had been training as a stockbroker in the off seasons.

He reentered baseball 20 years later as President of the Yankees. He later served as the President of the Houston Astros, and then President and General Manager of the San Franscisco Giants. His shrewd maneuvering brought San Francisco from last place in 1985 to the NL West title in 1987.

AL ROSEN: Did you know...

...Rosen missed the triple-crown in 1953 by .001. In the last game of the season, Rosen missed the first base bag when running out a sure hit — which would have made Rosen the first Triple Crown winner since Ted Williams in 1947.

...Rosen used small nails to keep the grain from splitting in the barrel of his bat. When discovered, the bat was ruled illegal by umpire Charley Berry.

...Rosen, in first 4 full seasons, had 130 HRs and 463 RBIs.

...Rosen, a tough guy and amateur boxer, had his nose broken 11 times.

...Rosen, due to persistent injuries, was forced into premature retirement following the l956 season.

...Rosen was born February 29, 1924 in Spartanburg, South Carolina.

IN THE 1954 ALL-STAR game played in Cleveland, Rosen hit two consecutive home runs and had five RBIs.

ROSEN LEAD THE AMERICAN LEAGUE in total bases in l952 and l953, as well as slugging percentage in l953.