Center Fielder – Fred Lynn – What the heck is going on here? Another Boston Red Sox? There have been some great center fielders that have played against our favorite team the Minnesota Twins. What about players like Amos Otis, Paul Blair, Chet Lemon, Ken Griffey Jr., Kenny Lofton, Bernie Williams, Willie Wilson and I could go on and on.
Nope, the Twins all-opponent CF is Fred Lynn. Lynn was originally a New York Yankee third round selection in 1970 but he said no and went on to USC. In 1973 the Red Sox selected Lynn in round two, six picks after the Twins chose shortstop Ed McMahon, a Sporting News All-American out of the University of Massachusetts who they started out in AAA Tacoma in 1973 with the likes of Tom Kelly (I bet that was interesting). Then the Twins sent him to A ball in 1974 and after that season he was history. Did Ed McMahon going on to fame on the Johnny Carson TV show, no, that would be another Ed McMahon. Our man Fred Lynn however; had a cup of coffee with the Red Sox in 1974 and then went on to win the ROY award in 1975. In his first game against the Twins he went 2 for 4 with a run scored, and hit a two-run home run off Dave Goltz. 1975 turned out to be a pretty good season for Lynn, in addition to his ROY award he was also the AL MVP, an All-Star and a Gold Glove winner. During his 17 year career with five different teams he went on to be a nine-time All-Star, four-time Gold Glover and for good measure he won the AL batting title in 1979.
Against the Minnesota Twins Lynn played in 130 games and hit .331 with an OPS of 1.054. Lynn had 160 hits against Minnesota pitching with 33 doubles, 38 home runs and 122 RBI. As a Baltimore Oriole in 1985 he walked-off the Twins on successive nights. On May 10 he hit a walk-off home run off Twins closer Ron Davis and on May 11 he hit another walk-off home run, this time off Twins reliever Curt Wardle who was brought in to replace Ron Davis on the mound.
According to the ever humble Fred Lynn,
“I really didn’t have any holes in my game other than the fact that I couldn’t stay on the field for the second half of my career.”
If you are a Twins fan you just gotta hate a guy like that…..