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1963 Topps Rookie Stars Featuring Pete Rose

1963 Topps Rookie Stars Restoration

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The Legacy of the Card

The 1963 Topps 537 Rookie Stars card is one of the more iconic and valuable baseball cards from the 1960s due to Pete Rose's presence. While not extremely rare with around 5,000 graded copies according to PSA, the card remains immensely popular with collectors. High-grade examples are very difficult to find - a PSA Gem Mint 10 copy sold for a record $717,000 at auction in 2016, making it one of the more valuable modern baseball cards in existence. The card's value is driven almost entirely by Rose, with the other three rookies being relatively obscure players.

The Players on the 1963 Topps Rookie Stars

Pete Rose

This is the only recognized rookie card of baseball's all-time Hit King. Despite being banned from baseball and precluded from Hall of Fame consideration, what Rose accomplished on the field has never been questioned. Rose, while clearly not the most physically-gifted player of his era, showed unrivaled heart and determination to reach unthinkable heights, collecting 4,256 career hits. During his career, Rose would hit .300 or better in 14 different seasons and reach or surpass 200 hits 10 times. After being named NL Rookie of the Year in 1963, Rose would win the 1973 NL MVP as part of Cincinnati's Big Red Machine. One of the game's all-time greats despite the controversies.

Pedro Gonzalez

Gonzalez had a short-lived career with the Yankees and Indians, although he was one of the first players from the Dominican Republic to play in the major leagues. He debuted with the Yankees in 1963 at age 25 but struggled, batting just .192 in 14 games before being sent to the minors. Traded to Cleveland in 1965, he played just three more MLB seasons, finishing with a .244 career batting average and 264 hits over 1,171 plate appearances.

Ken McMullen

McMullen had probably the most accomplished career of the non-Rose players, playing 16 seasons for five different teams and finishing with 156 home runs. His longest stint came with the Washington Senators from 1965-1969 where he improved his defense to become one of the better fielding third basemen. Though no star, McMullen carved out a solid career as a role player and spot starter, highlighted by being on the 1963 World Series champion Dodgers.

Al Weis

Weis is best remembered for his dramatic Game 5 home run in the 1969 World Series for the "Miracle Mets" against Baltimore. With New York down 3-2 in the 7th, his solo shot tied the game before the Mets pulled ahead late for the victory. It was the biggest moment for the light-hitting Weis, who had just 14 career homers over six MLB seasons spent mostly as a utility infielder for the White Sox and Mets. His home run provided an iconic highlight during the Mets' improbable World Series run.

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