PHILADELPHIA – Dick Allen, the dreaded slugger who was selected seven times for the All-Star Games, won the National League Rookie of the Year award in 1964 and named AL Most Valuable Player in 1972, has died. He was 78 years old.
The Philadelphia Phillies, the team Allen made his debut for, announced his death on Monday.
Allen’s number 15 was retired by the Phillies last September, an honor that was an old debt to someone is that he is considered by far one of the most outstanding players in the history of the franchise and that he fought against racism in the middle. from a tumultuous era with the club in the 1960s.
“The Phillies are heartbroken over the passing of our dear friend and teammate Dick Allen,” the team said.
“Dick will be remembered not only for being one of the greatest and most popular players in the history of our franchise, but also for being a brave warrior who had to overcome too many obstacles to reach the level he reached. Dick’s iconic status will be echoed by future generations of baseball fans as one of the all-time greats in America’s favorite sport, “the Phillies said.
Phillies owner John Middleton broke the “unwritten” rule of only withdrawing the numbers of players who are inducted into the Hall of Fame to honor Allen.
“I thank the city of Philadelphia. Although it was difficult, I was able to make many friends, ”Allen said in an emotional ceremony on a sunny afternoon.
Mike Schmidt, the legendary third baseman with a plaque in Cooperstown who convinced Allen to come out of retirement for a second cycle with the team in 1975, was among the group of former players who attended the ceremony. They donned face masks and sat keeping several meters apart during a coronavirus pandemic that shortened that campaign to 60 games. The Phillies also plan to honor Allen in 2021 with fans in the stands.
Schmidt described Allen as “an incredible mentor” who was unfairly labeled a “bad partner” and “troublesome.”
“Dick was a black man who refused to be treated like a second-class citizen,” Schmidt said in a speech. “He had to play in front of team fans who were products of that racist era (and with) fellow racists and different rules for black and white. Fans were throwing things at him, so Dirk always wore his batting helmet throughout the game. They used degrading racist insults. They threw garbage at the entrance of his house. In general, he was tormented and from everywhere. And Dick rebelled. ”
Schmidt also noted that Allen did not have a negative reputation when he played for the St. Louis Cardinals, the Los Angeles Dodgers and the Chicago White Sox. He also campaigned for Allen to be inducted into the Hall of Fame.
Over 15 seasons, Allen hit .292 with 351 home runs, 1,119 RBIs and a .912 OPS. He defended first base, third base and left field.
After seven seasons in Philadelphia, where he became famous for his huge home runs at Connie Mack Stadium, Allen played one season with the Cardinals and Dodgers.
In 1972, he signed with the Chicago White Sox and won the Most Valuable Player award. He culminated his career with Oakland in 1977.
Allen had the fifth-most home runs (319) over an 11-year span (1964-74) behind four Hall of Fame players: Hank Aaron (391), Harmon Killebrew (336), Willie Stargell (335) and Willie McCovey (327).
He failed to be inducted into the Hall of Fame in journalists’ voting and fell short by one vote in the 2014 Golden Age committee vote.