Monday, April 13, 2009
Mark Fidrych Dead in Farming Accident
He was just twenty-one when he sped into Detroit like a rocket. His career was short but he was a true free-spirit. I hope the last thirty years were bearable for him on his farm in Massachusetts. I will always remember seeing him pitch at Tiger Stadium against the Yankees in 1976 with my six-year old son and five-year old daughter. Fidrych’s star-making moment for us and all baseball fans came June 28 against the New York Yankees. In a nationally televised game on ABC’s ‘‘Monday Night Baseball’’ and in front of a crowd of 47,855 at Tiger Stadium, Fidrych pitched a complete-game seven-hitter, allowing just one run in the Tigers’ 5-1 victory. Strutting around the mound, talking to the baseball, and always engaging the crowd, he received a prolonged ovation after the final out, eventually returning to the field to acknowledge the raucous cheers.
It was truly magic. R.I. P.