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Ted Kluszewski

 

Big Klu! Cincinnati Reds Hall of Famer Ted Kluszewski was notorious for his strength. When Kluszewski joined the Reds in 1947, he cut off the sleeves of his uniform, an action he took because the tight sleeves constricted his large biceps and shoulders and interfered with his swing.

Kluszewski was a first baseman, was with the Reds from 1947-1957, and was an NL All-Star from 1953-1956. He had a .298 lifetime batting average, with 279 home runs and 1,028 RBI, hitting over .300 seven times. In 1954, he was the NL MVP runner-up to Willie Mays, hitting .326 and leading the NL in home runs (49), RBI (141), and fielding average (.996). For his career, Kluszewski walked (492) more often than he struck out (365). He is the only player in major league history to hit 35 or more homers in four seasons in which he had fewer strikeouts than home runs!

Defensively, in 1,479 games at first base, he compiled a career .993 fielding percentage.

1954 Topps #7.

1956 Topps #25.

1986 C.C.C. Reprint #143 in the Bowman 1951 series.

Reprint of 1953 Bowman Color #62.

Topps Archives 1953 #162.

1982 TCMA #1982-11.

1986 TCMA #9CR.

1993 Hi-Pro #138.

2007 Upper Deck Legendary Cuts #36.

After retiring as a player, Kluszewski was a hitting coach under Sparky Anderson with the Cincinnati Reds and the Big Red Machine teams in the 1970s. As noted here, Big Klu's Reds uniform number 18 was retired by the Reds in 1998.

Card I wish I had: 1957 Topps, Sleeveless, muscles, just a great pose and great card!

My favorite card from this post: I love his pose in the 1982 TCMA and 1993 Hi-Pro.

What's yours?

Thanks for stopping by!

CinciCuse Bill

Comments

  1. You'll get that '57 someday!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I’m looking. Poor condition cards are at least $20.

      Delete
  2. Had no idea he was such an awesome hitter... and that there are so many cards showing off those arms. I'd love to own his 1957 card too. And the 56T and Action Packed cards would be my favorite of the bunch.

    ReplyDelete
  3. '57 is the best. Out of the ones you showed, I like the '56 card, although there's not much biceps-showin'.

    I interviewed the family of a deceased former Reds player a few years ago and they told stories about helping shag balls while Kluszewski took batting practice. I was pretty envious.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Big Klu was a beast! Great cards.

    ReplyDelete
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