Thursday, September 04, 2008

Jim Abbott - Anniversary of a No Hitter

Today marks the 15th anniversary of Jim Abbott's no-hitter pitching for the NY Yankees against the Cleveland Indians. Jim has been an inspiration to many people and below are some memorable quotes by him and about him, courtesy of

By Jim Abbott:
"The no-hitter was the highlight of my career. The specialness of it, I didn't know how lasting it would be when it happened. Everywhere I go, people talk about that game, how exciting it was. That makes me very proud. I'm awfully happy that a ball didn't bloop in somewhere."

"I had an incredible experience living in New York, playing for the Yankees, to go through all of the things I did, including the no-hitter. It was a very memorable time."

"Some of you may know that my career statistics weren't that great. There were some incredible highlights and some agonizing lowlights. The truth is, I won't go to the hall of fame. But if a career can be measured by special moments, lessons learned, and a connection with people then I would stack mine up with anyone's. So that's why I stand here. To share. Maybe there is an obligation to share. To try and learn from the experiences life puts us through."

"One of the beautiful things about baseball is the history."

About Jim Abbott:
"Born without a right hand, southpaw Jim Abbott went directly from the University of Michigan to the Angels' starting rotation in the spring of 1989 without spending a day in the minor leagues. Many considered the move a publicity stunt by manager Doug Rader, but after struggling early, Abbott proved his doubters wrong by winning 12 games with a 3.92 ERA in his rookie season. On the mound, Abbott wore a right-hander's fielder's glove over the stump at the end of his right arm. While completing his follow-through after delivering a pitch, he rapidly switched the glove to his left hand so he could handle any balls hit back to him. Abbott's career had its ups and downs. In 1991 he looked like one of the best young left-handers in the game after winning 18 games for the Angels while posting a 2.89 ERA. He was traded to the Yankees in December 1992 and in the heat of the pennant race tossed a 4-0 no-hitter against Cleveland. He only rarely recaptured his early promise, however, and suffered a horrific 2-18, 7.48 ERA season in 1996. Given that he could only swing with one arm, his most impressive accomplishments may have been his two hits in 23 career at-bats." - Warner Oliver Rockford in the BaseballLibrary (website: link)

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