By Rob Biertempfel/Photos and video by Rob Biertempfel
There was an autographed ball, two World Series rings, a couple of Gold Glove awards, and the uniform he wore during the 1960 World Series. Yet, the most eye-catching piece of Roberto Clemente memorabilia on display in the PNC Park interview room this afternoon was a boldly patterned suit.
We’re talking wide lapels, a sort of ziz-zag, geometic pattern, and not a stitch of natural fiber. “He was stylin’ at all times,” Roberto Clemente Jr. said with a smile. “If anyone could pull it off, it would be him.”
Those items are among hundreds of personal effects from the Clemente family’s collection that will be auctioned during the All-Star FanFest on July 11 in Miami.
“So many fans come to me and say, ‘I used to have your father’s baseball card, but my mom threw out all of my cards. I wish I could have that back. Do you have anything of his?’ ” Clemente Jr. said. “So many people want a piece of him. It’s time to share.”
Clememte Jr. said the family has not yet decided how to use the proceeds from the auction.
- Silver bats Clemente got for winning the National League batting titles in 1964 and 1967
- A Hall of Fame induction plaque
- The 1971 Dodge Charger Clemente won for being named MVP of the 1971 World Series
- A Pirates road jersey from 1966, when Clemente won the NL MVP award.
- Clemente’s ’60 World Series uniform, which is valued at $250,000 to $500,000.
Hunt Auctions, which is based near Philadelphia, will handle the sales. In 2013, more than $1.7 million was generated by a Hunt auction of 200 pieces of Bill Mazeroski’s memorabilia.
>>> UPDATE 4;17 p.m. – Elis Diaz is still in the clubhouse (although not in the lineup), so the Pirates will carry three catchers for at least one more day. “We need to give it a little bit of a time lapse to see how it plays out,” manager Clint Hurdle said. Hurdle added that Francisco Cervelli had “no hiccups” with his sore right foot after starting yesterday’s game. … David Freese (hammy) and Adam Frazier (hammy) did some infield agility drills and ran in the outfield. Hurdle said Frazier is “approaching” a minor league rehab stint. Freese said he “is coming along fine,” but offered no clue about the timing of his next step. Were those sprints Freese was running in the outfield? “They were NOT sprints,” Freese said, then laughed. “Well, maybe those are my sprints, as close as I can get anymore.”
>>> It’s been a while since we’ve seen this guy. Welcome back to Pittsburgh, Jared Hughes.
The Pirates released Hughes on March 29, the final day of spring training in Florida. He signed with the Brewers on April 2 and opened the season on their active roster. “It was difficult leaving a group of people I really enjoyed being with,” Hughes said. “But it was nice to enter an organization that was so welcoming. It was really difficult right off the bat. But when I got to Milwaukee, it was an easy transition.”
Last season, Hughes made 67 appearances. If not for a sore lat that forced him to open the season on the DL, he would have ended up closer to his career high of 76 outings set in 2015. The righty put up a 3.03 ERA and a 1.42 WHIP.
This year, Hughes has pitched in 11 games for the Brewers and posted a 3.27 ERA and a 1.82 WHIP. “The ball is coming out well. It’s sinking,” he said. “That’s what I do, throw sinkers.”
>>> Yinz want links? I’ve got links:
Reds 4, Pirates 2: “The whole problem was the command of my four-seamer.”
Notebook: In which Cervelli returns, Polanco scuffles and Diaz’s days are numbered
Who's the first one back into the #Pirates lineup?
— Rob Biertempfel (@BiertempfelTrib) April 30, 2017
>>> Friday: Brewers at Pirates at Marlins, 7:05 p.m. PNC Park. TV: Root. Radio: 93.7 FM.
Brewers (15-14): Jonathan Villar 4, Eric Thames 3, Hernan Perez 7, Travis Shaw 5, Manny Pina 2, Nick Franklin 9, Keon Broxton 8, Orlando Arcia 6, RHP Jimmy Nelson (1-2, 5.34) 1
Pirates (12-16): 1. Josh Harrison 5, Josh Bell 3, Andrew McCutchen 8, Gregory Polanco 7, Francisco Cervelli 2, Jose Osuna 9, Alen Hanson 4, Jordy Mercer 6, TBA RHP Chad Kuhl (1-2, 6.26) 1
Gamecast: Kuhl was cleared to pitch by the training staff. He left his last start on Sunday in Miami after being struck in the right knee by a line drive. … Kuhl has allowed two or fewer earned runs in four of his five outings. As a rookie last year, he allowed a total of three earned runs over two starts vs. the Brewers. … One lousy start will murder your ERA, huh? Aside from the April 24 wipeout vs. the Cubs (9 ER in 1.2 IP), Kuhl has a 2.95 ERA this season. … Opponents are hitting .313 with a .470 slugging percentage this season against Nelson’s sinker, which he throws on 48 percent of his pitches. .. Nelson has not made it through six innings in any of his previous three starts (all losses by the Brewers) and has given up 15 earned runs in that span.
>>> Saturday: Brewers at Pirates, 7:05 p.m. PNC Park. TV: Root. Radio: 93.7 FM.
Brewers: RHP Matt Garza (1-0, 3.38) vs. Pirates: RHP Gerrit Cole (1-3, 3.50)
>>> Sunday: Brewers at Pirates, 1:35 p.m. PNC Park. TV: Root. Radio: 93.7 FM.
Brewers: RHP Zach Davies (2-2, 6.07) vs. Pirates: RHP Tyler Glasnow (1-1, 6.97)
Rob Biertempfel is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach him at email@example.com or via Twitter @BiertempfelTrib.