- Baseball in the Garden of Eden, A Book ReviewPosted 4 years ago
The Hitting Version of Sandy Koufax
- Updated: November 15, 2013
Hey baseball fans!
There were many stars in baseball in the 1940s and ’50s that came out of the Giants, Cardinals, Braves, Yankees, Red Sox and Tigers. But this post is about a very underrated Hall of Famer who played mainly on the Pirates. He had a very short career, but is considered one of the best to have ever played the game: Ralph Kiner!
Kiner only played 10 years in the MLB because of back issues, but those years with the Pirates, Cubs, and Indians were some of the most productive years this game has ever seen. The left fielder and third baseman hit 369 home runs during his career and led the NL in homers in his first seven seasons. Kiner also averaged more than 100 RBIs a season, finishing his career with 1,015 RBIs. The six-time All Star led the NL in slugging percentage three times, but he could also hit for average. A career .279 hitter, Ralph collected 1,451 career hits. Had he played another 10 years, he might have been the home run king, not Hank Aaron. In fact, Kiner could be compared toSandy Koufax; both players had short and unbelievable careers cut short by physical ailments (Kiner had a bad back and Koufax had arthritis). Besides being compared with one of the greatest pitchers of all time, Ralph married tennis star Nancy Chaffee, the first unseeded woman ever to reach the semifinals of the U.S. Open. Their kids must have been unbelievable athletes!
Well, as you can clearly see, Ralph clearly belongs in the Hall, which is where his plaque has resided since 1975. It’s sad that he only played 10 years, but those 10 years were absolutely amazing. Anyway, thanks for reading this post. I hope you enjoyed it and check back in a couple of days for more of “all the buzz on what wuzz.”