Fred Lynn – Centerfield
1975 Stats: 145 G, .331/.401/.566, 175 H, 103 R, 21 HR, 105 RBI
A unanimous choice for MVP so that gives an idea of just what a season Lynn had, but the Rookie of the Year Award? Not unanimous since one writer split the vote between Lynn and his “Gold Dust Twin” partner – Rice.
The entire season was a highlight film of Lynn – a Gold Glove recipient – making a spectacular catch, a perfect throw, a clutch hit or taking an extra base. Lynn led the American League in doubles (47), runs (103) and OPS (.967). In Detroit, Lynn hammered on three home runs and had 10 RBI in dismantling the Tigers in one game. And don’t forget the triple and single in that game for a 5-5 night.
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In the World Series, I especially recall Lynn attempting to flag down a hit that was an eventual triple, by crashing into the wall in left-center. Lynn recovered and the Red Sox had the good sense to pad the walls in the offseason.
Lynn simply did it all for a team that had collapsed in 1974 and that erased some very bitter memories for this Red Sox fan. The 1975 team was similar to the Red Sox team of today with a blend of veteran talent and several young players who contributed, but Lynn was the focal point around which everything coalesced.
In the memorable World Series, Lynn hit .280 with a home run and five RBI in a bitter loss to Cincinnati.
Next: No. 1