Tonight (8-2-13) the Brewers honored one of the Greatest ball players to ever put on a Brewer uniform…”The Kid”…Robin Yount. Celebrating Rockin’ Robin’s 20th Anniversary of his retirement from playing baseball.
Yount was the third pick in the first round of the 1973 amateur draft, and fresh out of high school. A year later he was the Opening Day starter for the Brewers at short stop. A position that he excelled in for years, securing a MVP Award (1982), and all 3 of his All-Star nods (1980, 82, & 83). In the 80’s Yount accumulated more hits than any other Major Leaguer with1,731. He was also the recipient of the grounder hit by Rod Carew in the top of the ninth of the A.L.C.S. that resulted in a 6 – 3 put out advancing “Harveys Wallbangers” into their first and only World Series in 1982. Yount was also a key contributor in the final regular season game that year in Baltimore, hitting two homeruns to get the “True Blue Brew Crew” into the American League Playoffs.
As the years rolled on, a shoulder injury forced Yount to move to the outfield where he won his second MVP (1989) and is now one of only 4 major leaguers to win it at two different positions (Hank Greenberg, Stan Musial, and Alex Rodriguez).
Yount spent his entire career in Milwaukee (20 years), retiring in 1993 with 3,142 hits, the the team leader in numerous offensive categories. Five years came and went until his next stop which was Cooperstown. He received 77.5% of the votes on his first ballot becoming the first player to be inducted into the Hall as a MILWAUKEE BREWER. Yount is also honored with his number #19 retired (one of only 4 other Milwaukee players), and a bronze statue outside of present day Miller Park (the only other player is Hank Aaron).
Tonight, Robin was very gracious in his speech, and drew a lot of emotions…such emotions that I became choked up and my eyes began to flood…because Robin Yount, and those Brewers were a big part my childhood. The same feelings washed over me when my dad and I sat at County Stadium on a cold rainy night during the ceremony in which Paul Molitor’s number was retired. He proudly proclaimed with a crack in his voice that he too if fortunate enough, would be go into Cooperstown as a Brewer.
I have so many fond memories of going to Milwaukee County Stadium with my family and friends. The Brewers and baseball were, and still are a big part of my life. So when Robin recounted his time here playing for the Brewers, I immediately went back in time myself…what a simpler time it was.
The “Kid” concluded his 20th anniversary acceptance speech by saying that “If there is something that you really want to do bad enough, do it today, don’t wait til tomorrow, 40 years go by really fast.”
I don’t know if truer words have ever been spoken.