|Birth: ||Mar. 14, 1960|
|Death: ||Mar. 6, 2006|
Major League Baseball Player. He was born the youngest of nine children and grew up in a rough part of Chicago. Puckett's birthdate was frequently listed as March 14, 1961, but recent research by the Hall of Fame indicated he was born a year earlier. In high school he already displayed exceptional talent as a baseball player. Kirby earned prep All-America honors at Calumet High School in 1979. He played college baseball at Bradley University in Peoria, Illinois, and at Triton Junior College in River Grove, Illinois, before signing with the Minnesota Twins in 1982. In 1984 he played his first Major League game as the Twins' centerfielder and lead-off hitter. He had four hits in that first game. He continuously improved and became one of the best players in the game - known for his powerful hitting to all fields and his signature home-run stealing catches over the outfield fence. Kirby recorded many incredible statistics and achievements: he played in 10 All-Star games and earned six Gold Gloves, 2,304 hits, and two World Championships - to name a few. Puckett, led the Twins to, two World Series titles in 1987 and 1991. He also recorded more hits in his first ten years than any other player this century and in 1988 had the highest batting average (.356) by an American League right-handed hitter since Joe DiMaggio, who hit .357 in 1941. Perhaps his most memorable achievement came in game six of the 1991 World Series, a game that will go down in history. Kirby had three RBI's, an amazing catch over the left-centerfield wall, and a legendary game-winning home run in the bottom of the eleventh inning that would inspire the Twins to go on and win game seven and their second world championship. Despite all of his achievements and amazing statistics, perhaps his greatest gift to the game of baseball was his attitude and the type of person he was on and off the field. In an era when professional athletes jump from team to team, Kirby Puckett remained in the twin cities for his entire twelve year career - win or lose. Being such a talented player, he easily could have played for another team and made more money, but Kirby saw past that. He played the game for fun and his smiles rubbed off not only on his teammates but also on the many fans that adored him. In 1996 Kirby Puckett announced his retirement. He was forced to retire after learning he suffered from glaucoma in his right eye. The Mn Twins retired number 34 Kirby's number in 1996. When he addressed his teammates he stressed that this was not a tragedy, as others stated. He went on by reminding them of Rod Carew, who had recently lost his daughter to leukemia. Throughout his career, and on the day of his retirement, Kirby Puckett displayed the genuine, inspirational, and generous qualities every major athlete - and everyone - should strive to possess. Kirby was elected into The Hall of Fame by Baseball Writers in 2001. (bio by: Steve Edquist ~In Memory Of Aaron & Scrappy~)
Cause of death: Stroke
Cremated, Ashes given to family or friend.
Maintained by: Find A Grave
Originally Created by: Steve Edquist ~In Memory...
Record added: Mar 06, 2006
Find A Grave Memorial# 13546294