Play Ball!! Baseball Digest Covers from the 1940s-50s

Since the 1940s Baseball Digest has chronicled the deep details of Major League Baseball. These vintage covers from the 1940s and 50s are from the era when baseball was still king in American sports. We’re celebrating the opening of the 2017 season with 10 of our favorite Baseball Digest covers from those years.

(Above): October 1956


October 1955. Walt Alston was the manager of the Brooklyn and Los Angeles Dodgers from 1954-76. In 1955 they won their only World Series when they were based in Brooklyn.


August 1957. Stan “The Man” Musial hit .351 in 1957, and was named Sports Illustrated‘s Sportsman of the Year.


August 1952. Bobby Schantz led the American league with a 24-7 record in 1952 and won the MVP award. His salary was $12,000.


May 1953. Brooklyn Dodger Carl Furillo was nicknamed “The Reading Rifle.” He won the 1953 batting title with a .344 average, and was named to the All-Star team.


August 1948. Lou Boudreau was a shortstop and manager for the Cleveland Indians. In 1948 he won the American League Most Valuable Player award and managed the team to a World Series victory (the last time that the Tribe won the championship).


October 1954. Yankees outfielder Irv Noren hit .267 that year. He was a journeyman who played for six teams over 10 years in the leagues, and also played a season of professional basketball for the National Basketball League’s Chicago American Gears in 1946. Al “The Hebrew Hammer” Rosen hit an even .300 in 1954 for the Cleveland Indians, and was the All-Star Game MVP. Right-hander Gene Conley went 14-9 for the Milwaukee Braves, with a 2.96 ERA. Conley was a 1954 All-Star. He is the only person to win championships in two major American sports, winning a World Series with the Braves in 1957 and three Boston Celtics basketball championships, from 1959-61.


October 1952. Right-handed Carl Erskine had a stellar year in 1952, with a 14-6 record and a career-low 2.70 ERA. He hurled a no-hitter against the Chicago Cubs on June 19, 1952.


May 1955


May 1952. Pictured is St. Louis Cardinals pitcher Gerald Staley, who went 17-14 in 1952 and was named to the National League All-Star team.



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