July 10, 2009
by William Szczepanek
Ed Mathews (Topps 1956 #107) goes by the adage that if you can’t catch the ball then knock the player unconscious so he can't retrieve it.
Ed “Eddie” Mathews is considered one of the finest third basemen of all time. Ed Mathews hit 512 career home runs and was in the top ten of home run hitters for 11 consecutive seasons, hitting more than 30 home runs for 9 consecutive seasons.
A potent, left-handed pull hitter, Mathew’s swing was a thing of beauty – simple, balanced and powerful. He teamed up with Hank Aaron to hit 863 home runs for the Braves, surpassing the totals of Ruth and Gehrig for the Yankees.
He was the first rookie to hit 3 home runs in one game and surpassed Ralph Kiner’s record for home runs by a rookie with 25. In 1953, he hit 47 home runs, which set a record for home runs by a third baseman, since broken by Mike Schmidt.
Eddie Mathews was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1978 and ranks second all-time in home runs, RBIs, slugging percentage and total bases for third basemen. He was also the first athlete to be featured on the cover of Sports Illustrated.
You can check out Mathews' stats at Baseball-Reference.com.