A short while ago I got a chance to meet Fred Lynn.
For those of you outside of Boston or not of a certain age, Fred Lynn was the man in 1975. He was first player in MLB history to win AL Rookie of the Year and AL MVP honors in the same the year. Only Ichiro Suzuki has achieved the distinction since. In 1975, the Red Sox would win an AL pennant and play a classic World Series against the Cincinnati Reds falling short in seven games. Lynn would also win the AL batting title in 1979.
After the 1980 season, Lynn signed as a free agent with the California Angels. He would go on to play for the Baltimore Orioles and the Detroit Tigers before finishing his playing career with the San Diego Padres in 1990.
Lynn also has the distinction of being the only MLB player to hit a grand slam home run during the All-Star Game. He did so while with the Angels in the 1983 mid-summer classic at Old Comiskey Park in Chicago off San Francisco Giants pitcher Atlee Hammaker. The AL won the game 13-3 marking the first time the Junior Circut had won the All-Star Game since 1971. I told Lynn that my grandparents (who were in charge of us while my parents were in Europe that summer) promptly sent us to bed after that dinger.
Lynn told me that he would later become teammates with Hammaker in San Diego and that Hammaker’s wife would not speak to him. I can’t blame her. Hammaker was never the same pitcher after giving up that home run.
Above is a video clip of Lynn hitting the aforementioned grand slam.
All in all, Lynn is now 62 and looking good.
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