A Quick Profile of Kirby Puckett in 1992

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I bought the June 1992 copy of Beckett Baseball Card Monthly a few months ago. If you were a collector in the early ’90s, there’s a fair chance you remember this image of Kirby Puckett on the cover:

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In the interview of Kirby that was inside, he tried to explain his popularity with Twins fans: “A lot of the older guys, I probably look fatter than them. I guess the guy in the stands figures it could be him out there.” Twins GM Andy MacPhail added: “There aren’t a whole lot of people who look like Puck. Especially in Minnesota.” MacPhail described a scene at a Twin Cities-area mall like this: “Before our first Christmas here I was walking through a mall and there was a young kid who barely seemed old enough to talk, looking through a store window with his parents. He was pointing to a Twins jersey and saying, ‘Kirby, Kirby.’ It sounded like those were the first words he said. I realized then that [Puckett] is, in a sense, the identity of the Twins.”

Puckett was perhaps at the peak of his career in June 1992, coming off the memorable World Series vs. the Braves and winning A.L. player of the month honors in May and June of ’92. At the time, he said: “I like to think I have, realistically, five or six good years left. I don’t want to be one of those guys who hang on just to hang on. When I’m gone, man, I’m gone. I won’t hang around, and I won’t be a guy who’s at autograph shows. I’ll just be out being a normal guy, running Kirby’s Car Wash and doing what normal guys do.”

Here’s a third picture of Kirby, from his 1984 Fleer Update card issued after that season ended. Supposedly he hadn’t played a big league game yet when he posed for the picture:

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[If you're looking for other Twins material on this blog, there's an account of Gary Gaetti's two triple plays in one game in 1990, and Dave Kingman hitting a ball into the Metrodome ceiling in 1984.]

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