Monday, November 07, 2016

Happy # 78 Jim Kaat

We say happy # 78 to Jim Kaat, a great lefty who later became a wonderful baseball analyst.

Kaat broke with the Washington Senators in 1959.   He became a starter in 1961 now that the team was in Minnesota.  He pitched 15 years with the Twins and won 190 games with a 3.34 ERA.    He won 25 in 1966 and was named AL Sporting News Pitcher of the Year.   

Kaat beat Sandy Koufax in game 2 of the 1965 World Series.   Later, he started games in the 1969 & 1970 ALCS.

Surprisingly, the Twins moved him to the Chicago White Sox and won 45 with a 3.10 ERA in 3 seasons.    It was probably his best pitching period of his career.

Kaat hung around until 1983.    He finished with 283 wins, a 3.45 ERA and completed 180 games.

Why isn't a 283-game winner in the Hall of Fame?   I don't have an answer.  Nevertheless, Jim Kaat was one of the reliable arms in baseball for 20 years.

After baseball, Jim Kaat moved to the radio/TV booth and became one of the best game analysts.


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