Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Former Sox 1B Dick Stuart Would Have Been 85 Today

Dick Stuart
Had he lived, former Red Sox first-baseman Dick Stuart would have been 85 years old today (he passed away in 2002). A player on the 1963-64 editions of The Carmine Hose, Stuart had a fielding reputation that was so inept, he was given the moniker of 'Dr. Strangeglove'. One windy day at Fenway, Stuart picked up a wayward Fenway Frank wrapper and tucked it in his back pocket. He got a standing ovation. And yet, Stuart was a pretty darned good offensive player. In 1963, he batted .261 with 42 HRs and 118 RBIs. While he struck out 144 times, he still managed an OPS of .833. He actually finished 13th in the MVP voting that season! Most Red Sox fans who were alive in that dismal era (the team really stunk) never realized how good Stuart was because his image was so tainted by his defensive liabilities. Looking back, it's amazing how decent that era's Red Sox players actually were. The teams were really bad, but guys like Stuart were actually pretty good.