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World Series Game 6 (Reds' Slugging Ties Series)

1973 Topps

Johnny Lee Bench (December 7, 1947-) is considered to be amongst the greatest catchers that Major League Baseball has ever seen and was the team leader that led the Cincinnati Reds "Big Red Machine" to back-to-back World Series titles in 1975 and 1976. Bench was a smart ballplayer, with an exceptional work ethic, who starred for his high school baseball and basketball teams and was named class valedictorian in his senior year. The Cincinnati Reds then took Johnny with the 36th overall pick of the 1965 MLB Amateur Draft. He spent two seasons with the Buffalo Bisons before getting the call-up to the big leagues. In 1968, Bench hit .275 with 15 home runs and 82 RBI to win the National League’s Rookie of the Year Award and his first All-Star selection while also posting a .991 fielding percentage and a 47% caught stealing percentage to win his first Rawlings Golden Glove. These accolades were early signs of what was to come. He won ten consecutive Gold Gloves behind the plate, second only to Ivan Rodriquez who won 13. In 1969, he set the single season caught stealing percentage record gunning down 57% of the opponent’s would-be base stealers and also posted a .992 fielding percentage. That same year, at the plate, Johnny led the NL with 45 home runs and 148 RBI while batting .293 to win the NL Most Valuable Player Award. Two years later, he would repeat as NL MVP, again leading the National League in home runs (40) and RBI (125) as well as throwing out 56% of the opposition’s base runners – second all-time in single season caught stealing percentage.

Bench led a host of All-Stars and future Hall of Famers like Pete Rose, Dave Concepcion, Ken Griffey, Tony Perez, Joe Morgan and George Foster during the 1970s, helping the Reds reach the World Series four times (1970, 1972, 1975, 1976). The potent, well-oiled offense of Cincinnati earned the moniker "Big Red Machine" and could beat you with power or manufacture runs. The Reds beat the Boston Red Sox four-games-to-three in what is considered one of the greatest World Series in history and then repeated as champions in 1976, sweeping the New York Yankees. The 14-time MLB All-Star was named the 1976 World Series MVP after batting .533 with two homers and six RBI in four games. Johnny Bench was the Cincinnati Reds catcher for 17 seasons (1967-1983) and was formidable hitter at the plate as he posted a .267 career batting average with 389 home runs and 1,376 RBI. Bench also finished his career with a .990 fielding percentage behind the plate, winning 10 Gold Gloves, and gunning down 44% of the would-be base stealers. Johnny Bench popularized the one-handed style of catching that is commonplace in the game today. Johnny Lee Bench was elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1989. Since retiring, Bench has remained active in sports even attempting a run at the Senior PGA Tour after turning fifty. The Sporting News ranked him #16 on the "100 Greatest Baseball Players" list.

Robert “Bobby” Tolan (November 19, 1945-) was originally signed by the Pittsburgh Pirates in 1963, but was then taken by the St. Louis Cardinals in the 1963 first year draft inserting him in a backup outfield role behind Mike Shannon, All-Star Curt Flood and Hall of Famer Lou Brock. He won back-to-back National League pennants with the Redbirds in 1967 and 1968 and helped lead St. Louis to the 1967 World Series title. One day after the Cardinals lost to the Detroit Tigers in the 1968 World Series, Tolan was shipped with reliever Wayne Granger to the Cincinnati Reds for outfielder Vada Pinson. In Cincy, Bob was able to blossom and use his exceptional speed to lead the NL in stolen bases in 1970 with 57, but also in caught stealing with 20. He batted a career-high .316 with 186 hits including 16 home runs and 80 RBI. In 1971, Tolan suffered a devastating injury when he ruptured his Achilles tendon playing basketball and missed the entire season. He returned in 1972 when he batted .283 with 171 hits and 82 RBI to earn The Sporting News Comeback Player of the Year award and the Hutch Award – presented to the player “who best exemplifies the fighting spirit and competitive desire.” Bob is the only player to take both awards in the same season and one of only two players, along with Tony Conigliaro, to win both awards. He never won another World Series title again, but helped the reds win the 1970 and 1972 National League pennants before falling to the Baltimore Orioles and Oakland Athletics, respectively. Still upset about Tolan’s 1971 injury and his growing malcontent, the Reds traded Bob to the San Diego Padres in 1973. Bob played 13 years in the Major Leagues with the Cardinals (1965-1968), the Reds (1959-1970, 1972-1973), the Padres (1974-1975, 1979), the Philadelphia Phillies (1976-1977) and the Pittsburgh Pirates (1977). Tolan spent the 1978 season with the Nankai Hawks of the Japanese League where he batted .267 with 96 hits and 36 RBI. In 1,135 games in the field, he posted a .981 fielding percentage with 2,915 putouts and 101 assists in 3,074 chances. Bob Tolan retired following the 1979 season having hit .265 for his career with 1,121 hits, 572 runs, 193 stolen bases and 497 RBI.

Condition Census

Pos Grade Thumbnail Pedigree and History
1 GEM MT 10 (11)

Prices By Grade

1973 TOPPS 208 WORLD SERIES GAME 6 REDS' SLUGGING TIES SER.

Grade Most Recent Price Average Price PSA Price Population POP Higher
GEM - MT 10 $312.00 $65.00 11
MINT 9 $52.44 $52.44 $15.00 104 11
NM - MT 8 $28.11 $10.00 135 124
NM 7 $4.25 $5.00 24 265
EX - MT 6 1 291
EX 5 $1.99 8 292
VG - EX 4 2 300
VG 3 302
GOOD 2 3 302
FR 1.5 305
PR 1 305
Auth 1 305

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