Tony Perez was a vital cog in the Big Red Machine of the 1970s. He helped Cincinnati reach the postseason in five of the first seven years of the 1970s. He also played into October with the 1983 Phillies.
Perez’s finest performance in a postseason series came in the ’72 World Series. Against the Oakland A’s Perez went 10-for-28 with a pair of doubles and four walks. His on-base percentage was a team-leading .500 while his slugging percentage was a robust .522.
The A’s beat the Reds in a thrilling tilt. Six of the seven games were decided to by one. If Cincinnati had found a way to win just one more it’s likely Perez would’ve been the Series MVP. Instead the honor went to Oakland’s Gene Tenace.
Shown here is a letter from baseball commissioner Bowie Kuhn. The game’s head man writes about the virtues of the showcase event.
“The World Series is the premier event of American Sports.
“No other event has been able to capture it’s special appeal or match its magnificent history.”
The Hall of Fame executive later writes of the 1971 seven-game thriller. His final sentence alludes to the Fall Classic that Perez dominated.
“To our loyal fans, I dedicate the 1972 World Series.”