Hank Aaron—our great home run slugger. In the outfield he does the impossible and makes it look easy. When chasing a fly or low liner he may trip or fall, but he'll make the catch, often with his bare hand, and he'll whip the ball to the infield like a bullet.
Bill Mazeroski—acknowledged the greatest second baseman in either league. In the field he continually amazes me and everyone else. He's big, 190 pounds of fielding grace, and he can hit. We call him Golden Boy. If he sneezes we—figuratively—wrap blankets around him.
San Francisco Giants
Of course, Willie Mays is in a class by himself; and then you go to Orlando Cepeda, who, although a good-natured kid, looks like a raging bull. He seems to approach the game from the attitude of brute strength, like a steam roller. He is an unusual player to watch.
New York Yankees
It's hard to choose between Yogi Berra and Mickey Mantle. Perhaps from an all-round viewpoint I'd have to select Mantle. There's always the potential of an explosion in everything he does. But Yogi blends color with clutch performance.
April 13, 1959
Al Kaline. The way he runs bases makes him one of the most exciting players in baseball. He's a great defensive right fielder, with a rifle arm, and death to a player running from first to third on the hit-and-run. Last year he had 23 assists from the outfield.
Rocky Colavito. Not only is he interesting and colorful, but he is one of today's great players, with the chance of becoming one of the greatest hitters of all time. Although he has been in the majors only three years, already he has one of the largest fan clubs in the country.
In the field, Shortstop Roy McMillan is one of the finest fielders I've ever seen. His acrobatic plays frequently electrify the fans. I've seen all the shortstops from Maranville's time. Roy is as good as any and better than most.
Chicago While Sox
Nellie Fox—a great second baseman and a very important cog in the White Sox team. He is wonderful to watch in the field and at bat—a scientific hitter who leads the league almost every year in the number of hits.
St. Louis Cardinals
Of course we have Stan Musial but, when you look past him, the guy who gives the crowd the biggest bang is First Baseman Joe Cunningham. He is a throwback to the Gashouse Gang, always hustling and scrapping. The fans love him.
Boston Red Sox
Ted Williams—not only because of his great skill but because of the excitement he causes when he steps into the batter's box. Ted is all color on the field and off. You have to follow him for years, as I have, to know his impact on baseball.
Ernie Banks—a great fielding shortstop and the National League's home run king. When he goes to the plate there's first a roar from the crowd and then a hush of expectancy, just as when Ted Williams is at the plate swinging his big bat.
Kansas City Athletics
Bob Cerv—as a batter. Every time he goes to the plate, he can hit the ball out of the park and to any field. Last July 4 in Chicago, with a fractured jaw, a bruised hand and a broken toe, he hit a home run to beat the White Sox.
Los Angeles Dodgers
The kid who captured the imagination of the crowd last year—Don Zimmer. He always has a big cud of tobacco in his cheek and the players call him Pop-eye. He has great courage. Beaned badly twice in his career, he came right back.
A pitcher, Billy O'Dell, who was the star of the All-Star Game in Baltimore last year. He is a topflight pitcher with courage and the will to win. He won 14 last year and lost 11, good for our club. The fans get a great kick watching him pitch.
Richie Ashburn. Every year he must make a positive compensation for the numerous defensive alignments set up against his particular kind of hitting. In the outfield he never fails to make at least one spectacular play per game.
Roy Sievers—because of his power at the plate. He was the American League's home run champion in 1957. He is also an interesting fielder. Instead of diving for low balls and risking injury, he slides feet first into them.