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Mr. Killebrew Comes To Bat: A 1967 GIF-a-Rama

Thursday, September 16, 2010

1960's Snapshots from Twins Territory: Young Jim Kaat

It's as if even the young, studious Kaat couldn't wait for the
star seeking fan to finish with the portrait shot so he could get
back to his throwing session at Tinker Field in Orlando!
Jim Kaat was just kind of a gangly young guy in 1962, about the time this picture was taken.  He was about to establish himself that year as one of the best lefthanders in the American League. He won 18 games that year, with 5 shutouts.


Jim had a wonderfully economic windup and delivery, whichleft him in perfect position to field his position after the pitch.
It was also the year he was injured in a game on July 25th.

A pitch he threw was grounded right back at him on the
mound by the Angels' Bubba Morton.  The ball skidded on the wet Metropolitan Stadium grass, and
James Lee Kaat, 1966 Topps
Card. Would have won the
Cy Young Award that year, were
it not for another lefthander,
crashed his lips into his teeth. Both second baseman Bernie Allen and Harmon Killebrew remember seeing bits of Kaats teeth embedded in the ball after picking it up to remove the bloody sphere from the ball game.

Kaat left the game (Austin Daily Herald story pdf) to visit the doctor and dentist but still showed up, amazingly, at a post game party hosted by none other than Bernie Allen. Allen blurted out his surprise that Kaat still had the wherewithal to make an appearance after his ghoulish day.  Kaat, in his true, gritty fashion merely reminded him "Well, you did invite me, didn't you?"

May Your Taters Fly Far!
Twinkler Out




Enjoy the classic Kaat windup!



The Man With The Golden (16) Glove.  Only
Greg Maddux has surpassed him, with awards
for 18 seasons of gold glovin.'

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