Friday, February 5, 2016

no. 498 - john kennedy

Who is the man: John Kennedy finished out the 1970 season with the Red Sox after being purchased from the Brewers in June. Kennedy would stay with the Red Sox through the end of his career in 1974.

Can ya dig it: John Kennedy in Yankee Stadium with the American flag in the background. It's just too presidential of a photo.

Right on: Kennedy's position is listed as "infield," and it's accurate. He played first, second, third and short in 1970.

You see that cat Kennedy is a bad mother: Kennedy hit a home run in his first MLB bat, a pinch-hitting appearance that broke up a no-hit attempt by the Twins' Dick Stigman. Stigman had retired 17 straight batters when Kennedy homered with two outs in the sixth inning on Sept. 5, 1962.

Shut your mouth: Kennedy was made the Dodgers' regular third baseman in 1965 after Jim Gilliam retired. But Kennedy struggled to hit and then was injured. Gilliam came out of retirement and took back the third base job.

No one understands him but his woman: Kennedy not only shares his name with the 35th president of the United States, but the same birthday, May 29. This was a pretty big deal for someone who started his career with the Washington Senators with a Kennedy in the White House. Kennedy told former SABR director Paul Hirsch that a love letter written to him by his fiancee once was delivered to the White House by accident.

(A word about the back): Kennedy sure could pick his home run moments. The inside-the-park homer came against the Indians' Rick Austin in the fifth inning, tying the game at 3-3. The Red Sox would score two more times in the inning and go on to win, 8-4.

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