April 7, 1996 |
Kirby Puckett's vision has improved by half since his last visit to the eye specialist, but it's still a wait-and-see situation for the Minnesota Twin. Twins general manager Terry Ryan learned the prognosis Friday in a telephone conversation with Dr. Bert Glaser, a specialist working with Puckett at the Retina Institute of Maryland. Doctors have been unable to determine why a blood vessel behind Puckett's right eye became partially blocked, blurring the vision of the 10-time all-star outfielder.
April 29, 1986 |
OK, everybody who thought Kirby "Union Gap" Puckett would have more home runs by now than Don Mattingly, Fred Lynn, Tony Armas, Dwayne Murphy, Jesse Barfield, Dusty Baker, Kent Hrbek, Phil Bradley, Carney Lansford and Dave Winfield combined, please raise your hands. Yeah, sure you did. Now, of all the remarkable developments in what truly has been a remarkable season so far, few rank with Kirby Puckett. When this season began, Puckett looked like about as likely a candidate to be leading the league in home runs as Whoopi Goldberg.
October 27, 1991 |
He has seen more faces change around him than the cast of Saturday Night Live. From John Castino and Houston Jiminez, to Steve Lombardozzi and Lester B. Straker, to Scott Erickson and Chuck Knoblauch. Yes, Kirby Puckett has seen them all come. And he has seen about a thousand of them go. But for all of those years - all eight of them - one thing has never changed: When you thought of the Minnesota Twins, you thought of him. You thought of a 5-foot-8 pudgeball scooting around center field, cranking out those 200-hit seasons like the Tony Gwynn of the Midwest.
October 24, 1996 |
On the brink of their second consecutive World Series championship, the Braves were visited by the ghost of their failed past. Kirby Puckett was in the stadium last night, major league baseball's guest after winning the Roberto Clemente Man of the Year Award. The award goes to the player who best symbolizes Clemente's commitment to charity work, community involvement and sportsmanship. Clemente died in a plane crash while flying supplies to earthquake-ravaged Nicaragua. "I am truly honored to receive this incredible award," said Puckett, who was forced to retire this summer because of irreversible damage to his right eye because of glaucoma.
October 29, 1991 |
It was the World Series that lived on the other side of midnight. And it was the World Series that proved the journey from last place to first isn't always as long as it seems. It was the World Series in which a two-run lead looked like a 1,000-run lead. And it was the World Series in which the final swing mattered more than all the rest of the swings combined. It was the World Series in which Kirby Puckett turned into Carlton Fisk. And it was the World Series in which Rick Aguilera turned into Manny Mota.
May 4, 2002 |
Minnesota centerfielder Torii Hunter was selected American League player of the month for April - the first Twin to win that award in 10 years. The previous Minnesota recipient was Kirby Puckett in June 1992. Tampa Bay's Paul Wilson pitched six scoreless innings against Minnesota on Thursday, before giving up four earned runs. Still, his 2.70 ERA since the all-star break last summer is the lowest in the American League during that span. By hitting his 500th career double Wednesday, Rafael Palmeiro of Texas became the 11th player in major- league history and the only active player with 450 homers, 500 doubles and 2,500 hits.
July 23, 1996 |
Kirby Puckett will return to the Metrodome on Sept. 7 not to be saluted by the Minnesota Twins, but to thank Twins fans for their support. Puckett, who was forced to retire July 12 after 13 seasons because of glaucoma in his right eye, will address the crowd during a special ceremony before a game against the California Angels. "I look forward to the opportunity to thank the fans for their enduring support throughout my career," Puckett said. "The fans have always been there for me, and my wife [Tonya]
August 29, 1995 |
The Minnesota Twins had been robbed, but they weren't ruined. Moments after centerfielder Otis Nixon took away Rich Becker's bid for a winning home run, Pedro Munoz hit an RBI single in the 10th inning last night that gave the Twins a 4-3 victory over the visiting Texas Rangers. Kirby Puckett followed Becker with a ground-rule double, and scored on Munoz's third hit of the game. Puckett tied Harmon Killebrew for the Twins' record of 1,047 runs. The Rangers remained one-half game ahead of Milwaukee for the wild-card lead.
May 21, 1994 |
As usual when the Minnesota Twins have a monster night, Kirby Puckett was right in the middle of things. "I feel like every time I go up to the plate I'm going to get a hit," said Puckett, who had three hits and a career-high seven RBI to help the Twins clobber the visiting Boston Red Sox, 21-2, for their sixth straight win. "I feel if I get a good pitch I'm going to get a hit. But I'm just the same old Kirby. I'm just up there hacking. " The Twins raked six Boston pitchers for a club-record 21 runs, including a record-tying 11 in the fifth and a season-high 22 hits, including 10 in the fifth, eight of which were consecutive.
December 5, 1992 |
On Monday, the Puck stopped here. And all Kirby Puckett did for the next three days was tell everyone he talked to how much he sure did love what he saw of Philadelphia. Then, of course, yesterday he went out and signed with somebody else. Puckett, 31, went back to his old team, the Minnesota Twins, for $30 million for five years. And once again, the Phillies were left to ponder how close they may have come to reeling in one of the biggest free-agent fish ever. "He just called me and said, 'I really was leaning your way,' " Phillies president Bill Giles said late yesterday afternoon.