Blog #54 (Robin Yount)

By Richard J. Decker on June 12, 2013 7:00 AM

This week there is no legal section of the blog.

Now for the Opening Day memory:

First ballot Hall of Famer Robin Yount spent his entire 20 year playing career with the Milwaukee Brewers and still holds many of their statistical career records. He was selected by them third in the 1973 draft, right ahead of fellow Hall of Famer Dave Winfield. He made his Brewers' debut at age 18, and went 0 for his first 4 games, before hitting a game winning home run in his 6th game. No 18 year old has hit a major league home run since. During the 1975 season, Robin broke Mel Ott's 47 year old record for most consecutive games played before age 20. In 1978, Robin created some controversy with the Brewers by threatening to retire and play golf unless he was paid what he thought he deserved. He had his best year, in which he won his first of two MVP awards, in 1982, hitting .331 with 210 hits (his only year with 200+ hits) 29 HR's and 114 RBI's (all career highs). He also led the league in slugging percentage and total bases. The Brewers were tied with the Baltimore Orioles on the last day of the season and they played each other for the American League pennant. All Robin did was homer in his first two at bats against fellow Hall of Famer Jim Palmer (among his 4 hits) in a 10-2 Brewers pounding of the Orioles. Robin then made his only career World Series appearance, but his Brewers were beaten in 7 by the St. Louis Cardinals. Injuries resulted in Robin moving to the outfield in 1985. He became the Brewers full time CF in 1986 and won his second MVP award in 1989. He is one of only 4 players to win the MVP in two different positions (the others are Hank Greenberg, Stan Musial and Alex Rodriguez). He was an All Star in 1980, 1982 and 1983, won the Gold Glove as an SS in 1982 and won the Silver Slugger award in 1980, 1982 and 1989. He retired with a lifetime .285 batting average, 251 HRs, 1632 runs scored and 1406 RBIs. He had more hits than anyone else in the 1980's. He got his 3000th hit in 1992 and the Brewers retired his number 19 in 1994. After his retirement, he was a coach for the Arizona Diamondbacks and the Brewers. Here are his Opening Day memories:

Yount.jpeg"The first ball hit to me on my first Opening Day, which was against Boston in Milwaukee, was a chopper over the mound. I stepped on second myself. The base runner sliding into second was Cecil Cooper, who later became a teammate in Milwaukee. I stepped on the bag and went across the bag, which I shouldn't have done, because Cecil put his spikes in my shin and cut me wide open. I didn't even know how to make the play properly. I was eighteen years old, new to baseball at this level. That was my welcome to the big leagues. I remember it was cold - 40 degrees - in front of 50,000 people. The next year, I hit a home run my first time up off Luis Tiant in Boston."

Thanks Robin--see everyone in two. Richie