Dick Allen (True) Rookie Cards

In high school, Dick Allen preferred baseball over basketball because he was better at it. As fate would have it Dick’s play caught the attention of the Phillies talent scout. Richie “Dick” Allen has one true rookie card.

The On-Field Presence of Dick Allen

It’s been said of Dick Allen that he captivated the crowd because when he came up to bat nobody moved from their seats. He was a power hitter and used an amazingly heavy 42oz. bat. He had a knack for creating lots of bat speed.

Speaking of speed he was extremely fast, he was a leader among the younger players on the team and often was asked to teach the team how to run bases. On July 31, 1972, in a game against the Oakland A’s Dick Allen hit two inside the park home runs – did I mention he was fast?

Baseball legend Willie Mays has said, “Richie Allen was and still is a Hall of Famer as far as I’m concerned. If Dick is not in the Hall of Fame then the Hall of Fame has no legitimacy.”

Richie played for the Phillies between 1963-1969 and towards the end of that he really didn’t get along with management.

He was accused of getting teammate Frank Thomas traded from the team because the two could not get along, he got a really bad rap for that and the fans didn’t care for it either. Ultimately, he asked to be traded and vocalized his unhappiness in Philidelphia.

A New Way Puts Dick Allen in HOF Company

More recently the folks over at MLB Network have been bringing the Dick Allen Hall of Fame Induction back into the limelight.

They claim by using the new Saber-metrics and WAR (Wins Above Replacement) it puts him right between Willie Mays and Hank Aaron statistically.

We’ll see what the future brings for this should be great. Because of this logic it may be a good opportunity to pick up a couple of Dick Allen rookie cards for your collection.

Career Stats & Accomplishments

After doing a little homework on Richie Allen I was astonished at this man’s career statistics. What baffles me, even more, is that he’s not in the Hall of Fame!

Dick Allen played for 15 years, Hall of Fame requires at least 10 years, this is important as we look at his numbers.

Richie led the league in home runs twice, 1972 & 1974. Rookie of the Year honors in 1964 as he batted .318 with 29 home runs and 201 base hits. He is also a 7x All-Star and the 1972 MVP in which he flirted with a Triple Crown that year.


Before We Begin

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True Rookie Card

Identifier (RC) Defined

A rookie card is a trading card that is the first to feature an athlete AFTER that athlete has participated in the highest level of competition within his or her respected sport. It must be licensed by both the League and the Players Association. An RC identifier is only given to cards that fit this criteria. Below is an exhaustive list of the featured players true rookie cards.

1964 Topps, #243 (RC)

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Unlike the 1963 design, this one is clean, simple, and attractive. Not many subsets in this one either. It seems that Topps took on the Keep It Simple Stupid (KISS) concept. The result? A stunning set that is a collector favorite.

The key rookie cards in this 1964 set feature Lou Piniella, Tommy John, and Phil Niekro, but there could be another key rookie card brewing in the pot, Richie “Dick” Allen.

Like the majority of rookie cards in 1964, Topps arranged them to represent a team and have two players per card which I prefer much more than the rookie cards that feature three or four players.

White borders with big bold letters give the card front lots of eye appeal. The card backs are different as well, oddly enough the whole backside of the card is printed in orange ink, or is that fuchsia?

Not much room on the card back that’s why it lacks player bio and the famous cartoon trivia like the rest of the cards in the set have.


Post-Rookie Theme

Identifier (PRT) Defined

The PRT identifier has a dual function. It’s used to identify cards that feature a player after their rookie season but in some way the card design has elements that feature a rookie theme. Also, for vintage, this identifier can be used for second year cards which are highly collectable, and often times preferred, but they are NOT true rookie cards.

1965 Topps, #460 (PRT)

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If the rookie card gets too expensive a more affordable option is a players second year card such as this beauty right here.

However, cost may have nothing to do with it. Many vintage baseball collectors enjoy collecting what has been termed in the hobby as “rookie cup cards” or “trophy cup cards.” This design element was given to players Topps thought excelled the previous season or the current one.

This 1965 Topps post-rookie theme card of Dick Allen is an exceptional one. Not only does it feature the rookie cup but its perhaps the most beautiful Topps set of the 1960’s. Add to this a great photo, colors and this is just a card for the ages. In my opinion of course.

Happy Collecting Collectors,

Learn. Collect. Enjoy.


Sources:

Dick Allen Stats | Baseball-Reference.com https://www.baseball-reference.com/players/a/allendi01.shtml (accessed August 3, 2019).

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