As pro All-Star Games go, the Major League Baseball version is considered by many to be the best. At least, it’s the closest to the actual game (defense being optional in the NFL Pro Bowl, while it lasted, the NHL and NBA contests). And it’s the one with the longest traditon, dating back 90 years to the 1933 classic played at Comiskey Park.
Babe Ruth was larger-than-life in every way, and that came to rising to the occasion as well. He hit the first home run in the newly-Christened Yankee Stadium in 1923, and a decade later he sent the Chicago crowd into a frenzy by blasting the first four-bagger in All-Star Game history, a third-inning two-run blast to right off the crosstown Cubs’ Lon Warneke. (Little remembered trivia: the “Fordham Flash” Frankie Frisch missed that distinction by three innings, hitting a solo shot of the delectably named General Crowder for the Senior Circuit in the sixth).
And for memorable home runs, the grand slam by California Angel Fred Lynn 50 years later, also in venerable Comiskey, was the first four-run shot in the contest’s storied history, and helped the A.L. snap an embarrassing 11-year losing streak.
Fans of tabletop games like Strat-O-Matic love recreating memorable seasons and games, and now the 60-plus-year old game company, has issued its second Strat-O-Matic Collectibles Series: Strat-O-Matic All-Stars, featuring the players from those two contests. This special edition card set will feature the baseball All-Star teams from the 1933 and 1983 seasons on vivid, colorful cards with all-red (for the American League) or all-blue (for the National League) backgrounds and white text on both the basic and advanced sides of the cards. The numbered sets will be offered in a unique shrink-wrapped box that will also include charts detailing the starting lineups, rosters, and a box score for each game.
All 96 player cards from these two games will be released in Super Advanced format: a first for the majority of 1983 players (the season having been previously released with advanced-only features) while the 1933 season has never been released in card form by Strat-O-Matic.
“We expect demand for Strat-O-Matic All-Stars to be at least as strong as our Strat-O-Matic Black set, which sold out in less than two days,” said Adam Richman, CEO, Strat-O-Matic Media. “Only 600 of these All-Star sets will be offered, never to be printed in this format again, so we advise fans to reserve theirs as soon as they go on sale at noon on July 10, just in time for the All-Star Game.”
The 1933 game, and this card set, featured Hall of Famers including Ruth, Frisch, Lou Gehrig, Carl Hubbell, Pie Traynor and more. The 1983 classic included an incredible 18 Cooperstown inductees.