PSA 9 1973 Topps #569 Walt Alston James Gilliam Tommy Lasorda Red Adams Monty Basgall

PSA 9 1973 Topps #569 Walt Alston James Gilliam Tommy Lasorda Red Adams Monty Basgall

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Walter Emmons Alston (December 1, 1911 – October 1, 1984), nicknamed "Smokey", was an American baseball manager in Major League Baseball who managed the Brooklyn / Los Angeles Dodgers from 1954 through 1976, signing 23 one-year contracts with the team. Regarded as one of the greatest managers in baseball history, Alston was known for his calm, reticent demeanor, for which he was sometimes referred to as "the Quiet Man."

Born and raised in rural Ohio, Alston lettered in baseball and basketball at Miami University in Oxford. A journeyman whose MLB playing career consisted of only one game–two innings played, and one at-bat with the St. Louis Cardinals in 1936–Alston spent 19 years in the minor leagues as a player, player-manager and non-playing manager. His service included a stint as manager of the 1946 Nashua Dodgers, the first U.S.-based integrated professional team in modern baseball. After six successful seasons as manager of Brooklyn's Triple-A teams, the St. Paul Saints and Montreal Royals, Alston was promoted to manage the Dodgers in 1954.

As a major league manager, Alston led Dodger teams to seven National League (NL) pennants and four World Series titles, including the only championship title won while the club was still in Brooklyn. After 23 seasons, Alston retired with over 2,000 career wins and had been selected as Manager of the Year six times. He also managed NL All-Star teams to seven victories. Alston's number 24 was retired by the Los Angeles Dodgers in 1977. In 1983, he was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame but was unable to attend his induction ceremony after suffering a heart attack that year and being hospitalized for a month. He never fully recovered and died in Oxford, Ohio, on October 1, 1984.

 

James William "Junior" Gilliam (October 17, 1928 – October 8, 1978) was an American second baseman, third baseman, and coach in Negro league and Major League Baseball who spent his entire major league career with the Brooklyn / Los Angeles Dodgers. He was named the 1953 National League Rookie of the Year, and was a key member of ten National League championship teams from 1953 to 1978. As the Dodgers' leadoff hitter for most of the 1950s, he scored over 100 runs in each of his first four seasons and led the National League in triples in 1953 and walks in 1959. Upon retirement, he became one of the first African-American coaches in the major leagues.

 

Thomas Charles Lasorda (September 22, 1927 – January 7, 2021) was an American professional baseball pitcher and manager. He managed the Los Angeles Dodgers of Major League Baseball (MLB) from 1976 through 1996. He was inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame as a manager in 1997.

Lasorda played in MLB for the Dodgers in 1954 and 1955 and for the Kansas City Athletics in 1956. He coached for the Dodgers from 1973 through 1976 before taking over as manager. Lasorda won two World Series championships as manager of the Dodgers and was named the Manager of the Year of the National League (NL) twice. His uniform number 2 was retired by the Dodgers.

 

Charles Dwight "Red" Adams (October 7, 1921 – January 18, 2017) was an American professional baseball pitcher, scout and pitching coach. The native of Parlier, California, pitched only briefly in Major League Baseball, but had a lengthy career as a scout and coach for the Los Angeles Dodgers. A right-hander in his playing days, he stood 6 feet (1.8 m) tall and weighed 185 pounds (84 kg).

Adams won 193 games in the minor leagues from 1939 to 1942 and 1944 to 1958, including a 21-victory season for the 1945 Los Angeles Angels of the Pacific Coast League. His Major League pitching tenure, however, consisted of only 12 innings over eight games for the Chicago Cubs in 1946. All of his appearances came in relief. His one decision came on Memorial Day, when he allowed a game-winning home run to Ray Mueller of the Cincinnati Reds, which capped a six-run, ninth-inning rally and enabled Cincinnati to defeat Chicago, 7–6, at Wrigley Field, in the second game of the holiday doubleheader. Adams allowed 11 earned runs, 18 hits and seven bases on balls in 12 total innings pitched during his MLB career, with eight strikeouts.

After his playing career, he was a scout for the Dodgers from 1959 to 1968. He then worked as the Dodgers' MLB pitching coach from 1969 to 1980, serving on three National League pennant-winning teams (1974; 1977–78) under managers Walter Alston and Tommy Lasorda, and helping develop many of the Dodgers' pitchers.

Said 324-game-winning pitcher Don Sutton upon his induction into the Baseball Hall of Fame in July 1998: "No person ever meant more to my career than Red Adams. Without him, I would not be standing in Cooperstown today." Tommy John, a 288-game winner, also had praise for Adams. "When I joined the [Dodgers in 1972], I was still convinced that I had only a mediocre fastball and that I was going to have to depend chiefly on my breaking pitches to win ball games. But Red disagreed with me, emphatically," John said. Adams encouraged him to rely more on the fastball, which though slower than most pitchers' fastballs, had a lot of movement.

In 1979, Adams was inducted into the Fresno County Athletic Hall of Fame. He died on January 18, 2017, at the age of 95.

 

Romanus "Monty" Basgall (February 8, 1922 – September 22, 2005) was an American professional baseball player, manager, coach and scout. A former second baseman who appeared in 200 Major League Baseball games for the Pittsburgh Pirates (1948–49; 1951), Basgall became a longtime member of the Los Angeles Dodgers' organization who served as the bench and infield coach for Hall of Fame managers Walter Alston and Tommy Lasorda for 14 seasons (1973–86). During that time, he worked with four National League pennant winners (1974, 1977, 1978 and 1981), as well as the 1981 World Series-champion Dodgers. Basgall was born in Pfeifer, Kansas, graduated from high school there, and attended Sterling College.