This is the only recognized rookie card of The Wizard and a post-1970 condition rarity in PSA Mint 9 or better. Ozzie Smith, while certainly a competent hitter and excellent base runner, made a name for himself by showcasing his stellar glove at shortstop. He began his career with the San Diego Padres in 1978 and remained there until 1982, when he was traded to the St. Louis Cardinals. Smith joined a team that was built on defense, pitching and speed. In his first year, Smith helped the Cardinals to a World Series title. In 1985, Smith hit a rare, gamewinning home run against Tom Niedenfuer of the Los Angeles Dodgers that helped the Cardinals reach the series again. This would be one of the most memorable moments of Smith's career. In 1987, he would once again help lead his team to the World Series with, perhaps, his best season. Smith hit .303 with 104 runs scored, 75 RBI, 40 doubles, 43 stolen bases and an OBP
of .392. Smith finished his career with a .262 batting average, 2,460 hits and 580 stolen bases. This 15-time All-Star was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 2002. This card is usually found severely off-center, preventing most examples from ever reaching unqualified PSA Mint
9 status or better.
Osborne Earl “Ozzie” Smith (December 26, 1954-) was a magician at the shortstop position for the San Diego Padres (1978-1981) and the St. Louis Cardinals (1982-1996) wowing fans and inspiring a generation of future shortstops. The Wizard of Oz’ amazing agility and acrobatic plays helped him win a record 13 consecutive Gold Glove Awards, leading the National League seven times in fielding percentage and also garnered him 15 All-Star selections. Smith’s eight errors in 1991 remains a National League record of fewest in a season. Ozzie helped guide the Cardinals to three NL pennants during the 1980s, capturing the 1982 World Series in his first season with the Redbirds. Quite possible the greatest shortstop in the history of the game defensively, Ozzie hit one of the most memorable home runs in baseball history in Game 5 of the NLCS in the ninth-inning to beat the Dodgers. In 1992, Smith collected both his 2000th hit and 500th stolen base. Ozzie Smith finished his career with a .262 batting average, 2,450 hits, 1,257 runs, 793 RBI and 580 stolen bases. Osborne Earl “Ozzie” Smith was elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 2002.