15 Most Iconic Baseball Photographs

by Paul Knepper

In today’s digital age every significant sports moment is tweeted, posted on Facebook and Youtube and replayed on highlight shows for days on end. Yet, there’s something sublime about capturing the essence of a moment in a photograph, especially in the pastoral game of baseball, whose golden years predated television and the digital camera. Classic baseball images immediately evoke specific memories or emotions in fans.

It’s not necessarily the greatest moments which produce the most iconic pictures and not every landmark achievement has a definitive photo associated with it. For example, while there are many great shots of Cal Ripken breaking Lou Gehrig’s streak, no quintessential photograph has emerged, though one may in time. Certain memorable play-by-play calls lack an instantly recognizable accompanying image, such as Bobby Thompson’s “shot heard round the world.” Sometimes a classic photo emerges from a fairly routine play.

This is my list of the 15 most iconic baseball photographs.

15) A Record Tarnished

On August 7, 2007 at 8:51 pm PDT, Barry Bonds hit career home run 756 off of Mike Bacsik of the Washington Nationals. No photo is more representative of the steroid era and the confusion and anger it created among fans.

14) The Greatest of All-Time

On May 1, 1991, Rickey Henderson stole his 939 base to pass Lou Brock as the stolen base king and as he so eloquently put it become “the greatest of all-time.” He finished his career with a remarkable 1,406 stolen bases.

13) The Bloody Sock

Curt Schilling beat the Yankees in Game 6 of the ALCS despite a torn tendon in his ankle sending the series to seventh game in what was an historic comeback by the Red Sox. Even though it occurred in the ALCS, Schilling’s bloody sock is the quintessential image of the Sox winning the World Series and ending their 86 year drought.

12)  Jackie Stealing Home

In the most discussed and debated play of Jackie Robinson’s illustrious career, the Dodgers second baseman stole home off of Whitey Ford in the 8th inning of Game 1 of the 1955 World Series. The Yankees held on to win the game 6-5, but the Dodgers came back to beat their crosstown rivals in the series for the first time. Fifty-six years later catcher Yogi Berra still swears that Robinson was out.

11) “I don’t believe what I just saw!”

Kirik Gibson’s stunning pinch-hit blast off Dennis Eckersley in Game 1 of the 1988 World Series is best known for Jack Buck’s legendary call, though every baseball fan knows the image of a gimpy Gibson pumping his fist as he rounds first base.

10) “Touch em all Joe, you’ll never hit a bigger home run in your life!”

The Blue Jays were trailing the Phillies 6-5 in the bottom of the ninth inning with one out in Game 6 of the 1993 World Series, when Joe Carter hit a walk-off three-run home run off Mitch Williams to win the series. Carter joined Bill Mazeroski as the only players to end a world series with a home run.

9) Don Larsen’s Perfect Game

Yankee hurler Don Larsen tossed a perfect game in Game 5 of the 1956 World Series against the Brooklyn Dodgers. No other pitcher has even thrown a no-hitter in the World Series. This classic photo shows Larsen’s catcher Yogi Berra jumping into his arms after the last out.

8)  The Ball goes through Buckner’s legs

People forget that the Mets had already come back from two runs down with two outs and nobody on in the bottom of the tenth inning in Game 6 of the 1986 World Series before the ball went through Buckner’s legs. Still, Buckner’s error on Mookie Wilson’s grounder was devastating more than any other player came to symbolize the Red Sox 86 years of futility.

7) Charlie Hustle

Pete Rose had plenty of noteworthy moments in his career, from base hit 4,192 to bowling over Ray Fosse in the 1970 All-Star Game. Though no photograph is more representative of the career of the man known as Charlie Hustle than the above picture.

6) Fisk Waves it Fair

Perhaps no image better captures the passion and suspense that is post-season baseball than Carlton Fisk waving the ball fair in the bottom of the 12th inning in Game 6 of the 1975 series. The ball tucked in just to the right of the foul pole, over the Green Monster, sending the series to Game 7, where the Sox eventually lost to the Big Red Machine.

5) The Catch

Considered by many to be the greatest play they’ve ever seen, Willie Mays’ catch at the Polo Grounds off the bat of Vic Wertz in Game 1 of the 1954 series between the Giants and Indians has become the enduring symbol of his greatness. The throw after the catch to keep the runner scoring was even more impressive.

4) Joltin Joe’s Streak


There’s no greater testament to Joe DiMaggio’s record 56 game hitting streak than the fact that it still stands 70 years later. In fact, nobody has even come close to matching it. This shot of the Yankee Clipper breaking through the 56 banner has become the enduring image of his achievement.

3) The All-Time Home Run King

These fools are two of the most famous fans in sports and nobody even knows their names. Seriously, any shot of Hank Aaron circling the bases after breaking the most revered record in sports seems incomplete without them. Hammerin Hank’s historic 715th home run came off of Dodgers pitcher Al Downing on April 8, 1974.

2) The Babe Says Goodbye

April 27, 1947, was Babe Ruth day at Yankee Stadium and throughout the country. His body ravaged by throat cancer, Ruth said goodbye to the house that he built. He died just over a year later. Ironically, this shot from behind of a weakened, hunched over Babe remains the lasting image of such an effervescent and powerful man.

1) The Luckiest Man on the Face of the Earth

The Iron Horse built a career on courage and grace, though it wasn’t until he was forced to walk away from the game that he showed us the true depth of his spirit. Gehrig stood before Yankee fans and the world knowing that at the age of 36 he faced certain death and declared “Today I consider myself the luckiest man on the face of the earth.”

Advertisements

34 Responses to “15 Most Iconic Baseball Photographs”


  1. 1 cell phone spy charger September 9, 2014 at 12:50 pm

    Grwat article. I will be experiencing many of these issues as well..

  2. 2 free instant casino games September 5, 2014 at 4:23 pm

    What a data of un-ambiguity and preserveness of precious experience on the topic of unexpected feelings.

  3. 3 https://fedorahosted.org/ August 12, 2014 at 9:25 am

    After checking out a number of the blog posts on your website, I truly appreciate your way of blogging.
    I added it to my bookmark site list and will be checking back soon.
    Please visit my website as well and tell me what
    you think.

  4. 4 www.histats.com August 10, 2014 at 3:47 am

    Howdy! I know this is somewhat off topic but I was wondering if you knew
    where I could locate a captcha plugin for my comment form?
    I’m using the same blog platform as yours and I’m having problems finding one?

    Thanks a lot!

  5. 5 http://www.amox-gaming.de August 2, 2014 at 5:03 pm

    I go to see day-to-day some websites and sites to read articles,
    however this website presents feature based posts.

  6. 6 www.minecraft-suchtis.com August 2, 2014 at 1:06 pm

    I’m not sure exactly why but this blog is loading incredibly slow
    for me. Is anyone else having this issue or is it a issue
    on my end? I’ll check back later and see if the problem still exists.

  7. 7 weight loss supplements for men July 29, 2014 at 7:27 pm

    Piece of writing writing is also a excitement,
    if you be familiar with then you can write otherwise it is complex to write.

  8. 8 sizzling hot deluxe gry online July 27, 2014 at 9:52 am

    It’s hard to come by educated people for this subject, but you sound like you know what you’re talking
    about! Thanks

  9. 9 diet Ultimo Review July 23, 2014 at 12:32 pm

    Usually I don’t learn article on blogs, but I wish to say that
    this write-up very compelled me to take a look at and do so!

    Your writing style has been amazed me. Thank you, quite great post.

  10. 10 http://bluewarriorangel.blogspot.co.nz July 22, 2014 at 9:31 pm

    Heya just wanted to give you a brief heads up and let you know a few
    of the images aren’t loading correctly. I’m not sure why but I think
    its a linking issue. I’ve tried it in two different
    internet browsers and both show the same results.

  11. 11 shopping handbag online July 22, 2014 at 6:06 am

    naturally like your web site but you need to check the spelling
    on several of your posts. A number of them are rife with spelling problems and I find it
    very bothersome to inform the truth nevertheless I will definitely come again again.

  12. 12 free animation maker July 21, 2014 at 3:27 am

    Greetings! I know this is kinda off topic nevertheless I’d figured I’d ask.

    Would you be interested in trading links or maybe guest
    writing a blog post or vice-versa? My website goes over a lot
    of the same subjects as yours and I believe
    we could greatly benefit from each other. If you might be interested feel free to send me an email.
    I look forward to hearing from you! Fantastic blog by
    the way!

  13. 13 energy boosters July 18, 2014 at 10:02 pm

    Definitely believe that which you said. Your favorite justification appeared to be on the net the
    easiest thing to be aware of. I say to you, I definitely get annoyed while people think
    about worries that they plainly don’t know about. You managed to hit the nail upon the
    top as well as defined out the whole thing without having side-effects , people can take
    a signal. Will probably be back to get more. Thanks

  14. 14 healthy diets for weight loss July 18, 2014 at 6:52 pm

    Hi there, of course this paragraph is actually good and I have learned lot of things from
    it concerning blogging. thanks.

  15. 15 lose 10 pounds in 2 months July 17, 2014 at 10:55 pm

    Pretty part of content. I just stumbled upon your website and in accession capital to say
    that I get actually loved account your blog posts.
    Any way I will be subscribing to your augment or even I achievement you access persistently quickly.

  16. 16 top anti wrinkle cream July 12, 2014 at 1:47 am

    I like the valuable information you provide in your articles.
    I will bookmark your weblog and check again here regularly.
    I am quite sure I’ll learn lots of new stuff
    right here! Good luck for the next!

  17. 17 wedesignthemes.com July 10, 2014 at 9:48 pm

    Why people still use to read news papers when in this technological world everything is presented on net?

  18. 18 free weight lifting routines July 10, 2014 at 3:08 pm

    Magnificent goods from you, man. I have understand your stuff previous
    to and you’re just extremely wonderful. I really like what you’ve acquired here,
    really like what you are saying and the way in which you say
    it. You make it entertaining and you still take care of to keep it smart.
    I cant wait to read far more from you. This is actually a tremendous
    site.

  19. 19 testosterone pills reviews July 10, 2014 at 1:29 pm

    It’s wonderful that you are getting ideas from this post as well as
    from our dialogue made here.

  20. 20 designing a website July 10, 2014 at 4:43 am

    This design is steller! You definitely know how to
    keep a reader amused. Between your wit and your videos,
    I was almost moved to start my own blog (well, almost…HaHa!) Wonderful job.
    I really enjoyed what you had to say, and more
    than that, how you presented it. Too cool!

  21. 21 http://cinerebelde.blogspot.com/2007/09/sicko-de-michael-moore-con-subtitulos.html July 8, 2014 at 10:09 am

    I have read several excellent stuff here. Certainly price
    bookmarking for revisiting. I wonder how a lot attempt you place to create this
    type of fantastic informative website.

  22. 22 diet menu July 7, 2014 at 5:58 pm

    I’m curious to find out what blog platform you’re utilizing?
    I’m experiencing some minor security problems with my latest blog and I’d like
    to find something more safe. Do you have any
    recommendations?

  23. 23 muscle spasms July 4, 2014 at 6:05 pm

    I have read so many articles or reviews concerning the blogger lovers but this post is really a
    nice paragraph, keep it up.

  24. 24 svn.cct.lsu.edu July 3, 2014 at 2:19 am

    I am in fact happy to read this website posts which contains lots of helpful information, thanks
    for providing these kinds of statistics.

  25. 25 shimada.ed.jp July 2, 2014 at 3:59 am

    If you would like to improve your knowledge just
    keep visiting this web site and be updated with the most up-to-date gossip posted here.

  26. 26 Best Men anti aging cream June 10, 2014 at 6:19 pm

    Woah! I’m really digging the template/theme of this website.
    It’s simple, yet effective. A lot of times it’s
    tough to get that “perfect balance” between usability and visual appeal.
    I must say that you’ve done a fantastic job with this.
    Additionally, the blog loads extremely fast for me on Opera.
    Exceptional Blog!

  27. 27 oscar blandi dry shampoo travel size June 5, 2014 at 5:05 pm

    Body scrubs are one of the easiest homemade beauty products
    to make. Never wash your hair with very hot or very cold water.

    It becomes difficult to treat these scars and therefore acne
    must be treated with the help of oral drugs and topical creams and lotions.

  28. 28 loreal professional hair care products shampoo June 4, 2014 at 12:04 am

    Just how much folic acid do you need to notice a difference
    in your hair growth. Basically the foremost vital thing with skin care products
    is their selection. But who has the time to go through all that
    information.

  29. 29 laser capri May 31, 2014 at 3:47 am

    Anxiety and depression is common among hair loss sufferers,
    especially those experiencing total baldness. It is important to always make sure that your hair is well maintained by ensuring that the hair is kept clean. By observing all the above tips
    when faced with the problem of hair loss Minneapolis citizens should be able to contain avoidable hair breakages.

  30. 30 reviews on Obagi skin care products May 26, 2014 at 10:46 pm

    You would be right depending on your understanding of certain points.
    It might just be a case of trial and error, if nothing seems to work speak to your dermatologist for any advice or
    try a different acne skin care product. Heating dries up the hair, which can also
    create a lot of problems for your hair.

  31. 31 Boca Raton CPA supplies houston May 24, 2014 at 4:54 pm

    This will make your details simple and easy so that employer can go through it at first instance.
    Prepare an application for Tax-ID number, if
    needed. Understand that when you enter a major tax franchise or chain your taxes are most likely
    being prepared by a trained.

  32. 32 Craig Salner May 10, 2011 at 3:59 pm

    My dad’s a huge Yankee fan and I have given him framed prints of pics 1 and 2 on your list. That’s a great picture of “The Catch,” but I have always considered that to be an overrated play in baseball history. Not because it wasn’t great, but because there have been better versions of that play over the years. I feel like we sometimes fail to appreciate the significance of what we’re seeing. When he was on the Angels, Jim Edmonds made that same play except it was a full length dive toward the center field fence. I’m sorry but that was a better play!!

    Btw, how about this pic for honorable mention?

    http://www.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://blog.prorumors.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/01/steve_bartman.jpg&imgrefurl=http://blog.prorumors.com/2011/03/rumors/steve-bartman-film-to-lead-espn-sports-film-festival/&usg=__aTPlNVuORUmrDK2VPzggpbVjQ4c=&h=227&w=275&sz=52&hl=en&start=0&zoom=1&tbnid=WCGBS989Ch0NSM:&tbnh=112&tbnw=144&ei=xpjJTfblO4PHgAeP1bDdBw&prev=/search%3Fq%3DSteve%2BBartman%26hl%3Den%26biw%3D1020%26bih%3D567%26gbv%3D2%26tbm%3Disch&itbs=1&iact=hc&vpx=406&vpy=118&dur=2141&hovh=181&hovw=220&tx=90&ty=200&page=1&ndsp=19&ved=1t:429,r:2,s:0

    (Jeez, didn’t expect the link to be THAT big!)

  33. 33 Barry May 10, 2011 at 2:41 pm

    Hi PJ:

    I really enjoyed the pix.Great blog as usual.

  34. 34 Jeff May 10, 2011 at 2:09 pm

    Nice job PK, these are awesome


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s





%d bloggers like this: