One of Major League Baseball’s most electric players of the 1980s and ‘90s is scheduled to grace South Mississippi.
Former New York Mets slugger Darryl Strawberry will speak at the Ohr-O’Keefe Museum of Art’s weekly “Our Love Affair With Baseball” noon luncheon series Friday.
Strawberry is expected to discuss the highs and lows of baseball career, as well as his faith and his work as an ordained minister.
Strawberry wasn’t just a dangerous bat for the Mets, New York Yankees, Los Angeles Dodgers and San Francisco Giants. Prior to making the big leagues in 1983, the former first overall pick out of Los Angeles actually honed his craft in Mississippi.
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During the 1982 season with the Jackson Mets, Double-A affiliate of the Mets, Strawberry hit 34 homers. He also collected 92 RBIs and compiled a .283 batting average with a 1.021 on-base plus slugging percentage.
He went on to star in the majors for 17 seasons.
By the time Strawberry retired in 1999, he had amassed 335 career homers and 1,000 RBIs to go along with a .259 batting average. His career highlights included the 1983 National League Rookie of the Year, right all-star appearances (1984-1991) and four-time World Series champion with the Mets (’86) and Yankees (’96, ‘98, ‘99).
Following his speech Friday, Strawberry will throw out the first pitch at the Biloxi Shuckers’ 7:10 p.m. game Friday against the Montgomery Biscuits.
For more on Strawberry’s ministry, visit StrawberryMinistries.org.
According to the “Our Affair With Baseball” Facebook page, online tickets to see Strawberry are sold out. Those interested can call 228-374-5547 to check availability. Adult tickets are $10, which includes lunch and admission into the exhibits. Children ages 6-17 are $5. Children 5 and under are free.
More to come
On July 1, the luncheon series will welcome nine-year MLB veteran Ron Swoboda, who won a World Series with the 1969 New York Mets. Doug Thompson (July 8), Tim Bennett (July 15), Cooper Farris (July 22), Matt and Marcus Lawton (July 29), Steve Smith (Aug. 5) and Dale Murphy (Aug. 26) remain in the series.
Former speakers included Rick Cleveland, J. Con Maloney, Gary Sarnoff, Barry Lyons, Jim Howarth and Dick “Lefty” O’Neal.