Houston/Larry Dierker Chapter meeting recap – 3/13/2012

From SABR member Bill McCurdy at The Pecan Park Eagle on March 13, 2012:

Astros icon and SABR member Jimmy Wynn turned 70 years old yesterday, March 12, 2012, and we are grateful that he chose to spend the evening with his fans and fellow members of SABR, the Society for American Baseball Research. Meeting for the first time in the Yankee Stadium room at the Inn at the Ballpark downtown next to Minute Maid Park, about 35 members of the Larry Dierker Chapter welcomed the Toy Cannon with open arms for all he’s done, and still does, to make and keep Houston Astros baseball on the credible side in the public mind and trust.

This is special milestone year in the life and career of Jimmy Wynn. – It’s also been 50 years since Jimmy Wynn started in his professional career at Tampa in the Cincinnati Reds system; 49 years since he broke into the major leagues with the Houston Colt .45′s and hit the first of his 291 career big league home run off a New York Mets pitcher named Don Rowe; and 35 years, half his lifetime ago, that Jimmy Wynn hit his last major league long ball off Bill Travers of the Milwaukee Brewers.

Jimmy’s book end homers, first and last, both happened in two of baseball’s now vanished green cathedrals. His 1963 opening volley off Rowe came about in the old Polo Grounds, the immortal setting of Bobby Thomson’s “Shot Heard Rounds the World.” The closer bash left the deepest part of the field in center at old Yankee Stadium on Opening Day 1977 during Jimmy’s last season as a short-time member of the Yankee “Bronx Zoo” cast.

To read the full recap, click here: http://bill37mccurdy.wordpress.com/2012/03/13/jimmy-wynn-celebrates-70th-birthday-with-sabr/

For more information on the Larry Dierker Chapter, visit http://sabrhouston.org.