Remembering Jimmy Wynn, and two tape measure home runs

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<pre><pre>Remembering Jimmy Wynn, and two tape measure home runs

Jimmy Wynn possessed power and speed during his 15-year major league career. However, most people remembered power, because it was prodigious and was generated by a man who was 5-10 and weighed 160 pounds.

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That power, not to mention an excellent pitching arm, helped win Wynn, who died Thursday at age 78, an all-time nickname: Toy Cannon. He finished his career with 291 round trips, but it's worth noting that he spent his first 11 seasons with the Colt .45s / Astros, who played in extreme pitcher parks: Colt Stadium and then Astrodome.

Of course, when Wynn actually got one, no park was going to keep it. Cases in Question: Two tape measure homers he hit over a six-week period in 1967. They were so impressive that television footage of them was preserved.

FOSTER: MLB Should Open Treasure Filled Files During Break

Sports video in the 1960s was erased almost as fast as it was recorded; only special things were kept.

And these long balls were special.

June 11, 1967: Crosley Field, Cincinnati

Wynn was experiencing an escape at age 25 as the Astros' daily center fielder. This Sunday afternoon, in Game 2 of a double game in his hometown, he sent a pitch from Sammy Ellis out of the stadium and into Cincinnati weekend traffic.

July 23, 1967: Forbes Field, Pittsburgh

Wynn almost outdone himself when he faced Pete Mikkelsen in Game 1 of another twin bill on Sunday. The ball cleared not only the center field wall, but also the batting cage, which the Bucs assumed was safe there. As Harry Kalas pointed out in the clip below, he was 457 feet from that part of the courtyard. Even Rusty Staub, the on-deck hitter, looked amazed.

(On the other hand, that wall remains standing at the Forbes Field site, preserved after the stadium was torn down in the 1970s.)

Wynn finished the season & # 39; 67 with 37 home runs, 107 RBI (then best career), 16 stolen bases and an OPS of .826 (an unknown statistic at the time). He made the first of three appearances in the All-Star Game that year.

He was with Houston during the 1973 season and then played for the Dodgers (he was an All-Star in his two seasons with Los Angeles), Braves, Yankees, and Brewers, ending with Milwaukee in 1977.

RIP, Jimmy.

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