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Smallthoughts:Old School Tuesday…Dwight Evans

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At the time of Dwight Evans career you could say he was over looked by more prominent outfielders like Reggie Jackson, Dave Parker, Dave Winfield and even his own teammates Fred Lynn and Carl Yastrzemski. Evans was just  as good as a fielder as they were and had a very strong and accurate arm.

Evans won eight Gold Glove Awards (1976, 1978–79 and 1981–85). In the 1970s and 1980s, Evans played in the outfield with Hall of Famer Jim Rice as well as all-stars Fred Lynn.

In the historic 6th game of the 1975 World Series, with the score tied 6-6 in the 11th inning, Evans made a spectacular catch of a drive hit by Cincinnati Reds second baseman Joe Morgan. He threw to first base to complete an inning-ending double play. Carlton Fisk hit the famous walk off home run in the 12th inning to win the game for the Red Sox 7-6.

Despite the strike-shortened 1981 season, Evans had his best all-around year. He paced the league in total bases (215), OPS (.937), walks (85), times on base (208), and tied Eddie Murray, Tony Armas and Bobby Grich for the home run title with 22. He also ranked second in runs scored (84) and on-base percentage (.415), and third in slugging percentage (.522). He added a .296 batting average with 71 runs batted in. In 1987, at age 35, Evans recorded career highs in batting average (.305), HRs (34) and RBI (123).

Evans was named an Outfielder on The Sporting News AL All-Star team in 1982, 1984 and 1987 and was also tabbed as an Outfielder on the AL Silver Slugger Team by The Sporting News in 1981 and 1987. Evans would win the Gold Glove award in 1976, 1978, 1979, 1981, 1982, 1983, 1984, and 1985.

In his 20-year career, Evans batted .272, with 385 home runs, 1384 RBI, 1470 runs, 2446 hits, 483 doubles, 73 triples, and 78 stolen bases in 2606 games. Only Carl Yastrzemski (3308) played more games for the Red Sox than Evans (2505). Evans also played for the Red Sox in two World Series. In 1975 against the Cincinnati Reds, he batted .292 with excellent defensive play in right field, and in 1986 against the New York Mets, he batted .308 with 2 home runs and 9 RBI.

Evans hit a home run four times on Opening Day. On April 7, 1986, he set a major league record by hitting the first pitch of the season for a home run, eclipsing the mark held by the Chicago CubsBump Wills, who hit the second pitch for a home run on April 4, 1982. He wore number 24 in honor of his hero…Willie Mays.

Smallthoughts: Old School Tuesday spotlights…Dwight Evans.

 

MLB debut
September 16, 1972, for the Boston Red Sox
Last MLB appearance
October 6, 1991, for the Baltimore Orioles
MLB statistics
Batting average .272
Hits 2,446
Home runs 385
Runs batted in 1,384
Teams
Career highlights and awards
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