Around The Links: Baseball's Summer Classic and Golf

Jul 9, 2013; Chicago, IL, USA; Los Angeles Angels designated hitter Albert Pujols (5) is congratulated by center fielder Mike Trout (27) after hitting a two run home run against the Chicago Cubs during the seventh inning at Wrigley Field. Mandatory Credit: Rob Grabowski-USA TODAY Sports

With the Major League Baseball All Star Game coming up in less than a week at Citi Field in New York, I thought it might fun to dig into the relationships between famous Major League players and the game of golf. It has long been a taboo for hitters to participate in golf during the regular season with old-timer testimonials of how the golf swing can mess up one’s stroke. But what about pitchers, they only play every five days, and don’t have to hit?

Angels’ Mike Trout plays in Albert Pujols’ golf event, doesn’t worry about swing

It’s nice to see the youngsters not buying into the old “wives tales” about the golf’s bad influence on a hitter. That doesn’t keep the coaches from pulling their hair out worrying about their young studs while they are out of management-control.

“The day after I last golfed in Albert’s tournament,” Trout said, referring to a May 20 event at Trump National Golf Club in Rancho Palos Verdes, “I hit for the cycle.”

I don’t think golf had anything to do with the decline of Albert Pujols, his problem started with leaving St Louis for the California Sunshine, and a ten-year contract in the latter quartile of his career.

From Babe Ruth to Derek Jeter, big leaguers have long had an affinity for the game

I had always thought former Atlanta Brave pitcher John Smoltz was among the better golfers around Major League Baseball. Even Tiger Woods was impressed with his swing, but then I read the story of Samuel Byrd, a reserve outfielder for the Yankees back in the 1930’s who competed in a World Series in 1932, and finished third in the 1941 Masters. Byrd won six PGA Tour events between 1942 and 1946, losing the 1945 PGA Championship to Byron Nelson.

The Best Major League Baseball Players Who Golf has provided us with an interesting slide show here. I was surprised to see Mark Teixiera at the top of this list.

At 104, Towson resident still plays golf

I find that it isn’t as easy to get around the course in my mid 60’s as it was when I was in my thirties, but I can’t imagine what it’s going to be like in another 40 years.

“He doesn’t hit it very far, but he hits it straight,” said Ridenour, whose executive committee awarded Dr. Sennott and Rodgers Forge resident Charles Zorbach with honorary memberships at a ceremony June 24. “His short game, including putting, is very good. He’s just wonderful to play with, very encouraging. He’s an inspiration to all of us guys who are over 80.”

Some of the younger players on the PGA Tour could find some good advice in these words. There’s no difference between being 37 or 77, one can shoot a better score if they keep it in the fairway. Are you listening Tiger, Rory, and Phil?

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Tags: All Star Game Baseball Golf MLB

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