|I still think of him as "Richie."|
Navigating through Deep South
Stellar rookies burst onto scene
Boys can find a name change disrupting. We had gotten familiar with "Richie." The "Dick" name was so abrupt and pedestrian. But there's a third dimension here. He was willing to answer to "Rich." Being reminded of this, my memory banks turned up an old supplementary type of baseball card, a small black and white photo card - one in a pack - that had the player's signature on it. Allen signed his name "Rich." Amazing how I can remember that after so many years. Says something for the value that baseball had in my youth.
Departing from Phillies
Click on the link below to watch Dick Allen's home run in the 1967 all-star game, a grand blast off Dean Chance. This is a YouTube link. I hadn't seen a video of Chance's distinctive pitching motion in eons. As a lifelong Twins fan, I got a little misty. Chance could have had one or two more great seasons for Minny, but he held out against Calvin Griffith in 1969, reported late, rushed his body into shape and got hurt. He was never the same. I invite you to watch Chance vs. Allen: