Veale Revealed

Recently, my son purchased two “hobby boxes” of 2017 Topps Heritage cards which feature the 1968 template. Within each box there are “buy back” cards. These are original cards with a special stamp applied. In a strange coincidence, the two cards he received were Pirates pitchers Tommy Sisk and Bob Veale.

Veale 68

The Bob Veale jogged my memory of his ’68 card which depicted him in a mock- pitching motion with two fingers extended to simulate the pitch grip. There is much to like about this card besides the “two-seamer” pose. Veale’s distinctive eyewear, the classic Pirates vest uniform and “410” marker on the outfield wall all add up to a great image.

Veale 62

Almost all of Bob Veale’s Topps cards are distinctive. The primary reason is his variety of safety glasses worn from year-to-year. The ’62 “Rookie Parade” card marks Bob’s Topps debut. His disembodied head provides the first glimpse of his gold-rimmed googles.

Veale 63Veale 67

The ’63 and ’67 cards feature the googles again and appear to be from the same photo session since Candlestick Park is the setting.

64 VealeVeale 65

The ’64 and ’65 feature different frames in spring training photos.

download (1)

In ’66 we find Bob at Shea Stadium with yet another new set of spectacles.

Veale 69'67 Veale sticker

1969 has Bob with the same “specs” but he has donned a letterman style jacket. The ’67 “test issue” sticker is the only Topps product with a photo of Veale sans glasses.

Veale 70

A new decade meant new eyewear as Bob changes styles once again, sporting aviator glasses.

Veale 71Veale 72

He seems to have settled on the aviator look since they reappear in ’71 and ’72. The Pirates have entered the “mustard” gold era as his cap clearly indicates. Veale really “styles” in his warmup jacket with great leather sleeves framed by the “mod” look of the ’72 card design.

73 Veal

A radical change occurs in ’73 as Bob is now with Boston and he has added a mustache. His last card features Bob with a windbreaker under the Red Sox double-nit, sans-a-belt uniform. He reprises his ’68 pose with the two fingers extended in a delivery simulation.

65LL66 LL

67 LL69 LL

In Veale’s BioProject profile Joseph Gerard stated that, “Bob Veale was one of the hardest-throwing and most intimidating strikeout pitchers in the National League from 1962 through 1972.” This is supported by the fact that Veale led the NL in strikeouts in ’64 and posted a career best 276 in ’65. His command issues coupled with poor eyesight put fear in the hearts of even the best hitters. The 6’6,” 212 pound lefty would finish with 120 wins. He worked mostly out of bullpen in the ’70s as arm and back injuries took their toll. On September 1, 1971 Bob pitched in the first game that featured an all-minority starting lineup for Pittsburgh.

 

Author: bouton56

Sports memorablilia collector with Seattle teams emphasis. HOF autographs, baseball cards and much more. Teacher for over 30 years. Attended games at 35 different MLB parks.

5 thoughts on “Veale Revealed”

  1. Thanks for the reminder about Bob Veale. I collected autographs in the late 80s and early 90s—often on baseball cards. I was lucky enough to be staying in the Giants hotel in 1989 and was in hog heaven getting autographs from my favorite team. I was unaware that there was also an Equitable Old Timers Game going on and all those players were also in my hotel. I only found out when my parents teased me for missing Hank Aaron while I was in the middle of a crowd around Kevin Mitchell (note, everyone missed Hank Aaron because of Kevin Mitchell).

    Anyway, during some of the downtime while waiting in the lobby this old guy starts talking to me and my mom (my mom was a saint for putting up with my autograph hunting). It turns out it’s Bob Veale and while he’s enjoying his anonymity he also misses some of the attention. So we’re talking (I had no idea who he was) and he introduces me to a bunch of other no-longer-famous old timers (I remember Bobby Shantz and Don Clendenon but have to dig through my stuff to find the the complete list) and I end up with all their autographs on hotel stationery.

    And yeah. He was a cool guy and I think the single nicest player I met during all my autograph hunting years.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I suspect that Aaron knew exactly what he was doing when he used Mitchell as cover to leave the lobby.

      Also, Kevin was a stud in 1989 so I can’t fault myself at all for the decision.

      Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s