Thursday, November 22, 2012

Red Lynn RHP was ambidextrous

Japhet Monroe Lynn
Born: December 27, 1913 in Kenney, TX

Position: Pitcher Photo of Red Lynn
Throws: Right (ambidextrous thrower)
Height: 6' 0", Weight: 162 lb.

Bats: Right, 
Throws: Right (ambidextrous thrower)

Debut: April 25, 1939
Teams (by GP): Giants/Cubs/Tigers 1939-1944

Red Lynn was 25 years old when he broke into the big leagues on April 25, 1939, with the Detroit Tigers. 

The following report indicates that Red Lynn was ambidextrous. Although he only pitched right-handed in games, he sometimes threw batting practice left-handed.

1943 Los Angeles Angels
Pacific Coast League (Triple-A)

The Angels had outstanding pitching. None of the seven pitchers who worked more than 100 innings had an ERA higher than 3.08. The big winner was Japhet Monroe (Red) Lynn, 21-8, 2.47 who led the PCL in victories. He won his first nine decisions of the season. Lynn, a 29-year-old Texas-born right-hander, was in his second year with Los Angeles. He was signed by the Cardinals in 1934. He once told The Sporting News, “I was a real yokel when it came to pitching. In my first game, when the catcher held down one finger, I thought he wanted me to hold the ball with one finger. I didn’t know I was supposed to pitch a fast ball, which happened to be my only pitch. So I held the ball with one finger and it sailed over the catcher’s head. When he held down two fingers (for a curve) I put two fingers on the ball. I was really dumb.” Red caught on pretty fast and had winning seasons in his first three years in pro ball. In 1937 for Jacksonville, TX, he had a 32-13, 2.65 record with 233 strikeouts, led all of professional baseball in wins and led the East Texas League in ERA, games pitched (56), innings pitched (340) - and walks (143). He jumped all the way to Columbus (American Association) in 1938 and reached the majors with Detroit in 1939. He was traded to the Giants early in the season and remained with New York through 1940. He pitched for the Giants’ Jersey City club in 1941 and then was acquired by Los Angeles. In 1944 he was promoted to the Cubs and was in the service in 1945. Lynn pitched for the Angels again, winning 17, 16 and 19 games in 1946-47-48. He was traded to Portland in 1949, and by the Beavers to Hollywood in 1952. Altogether he pitched in the PCL for ten years. He last played for Bakersfield and Salt Lake (Pioneer) in 1956, going 15-11 at the age of 42. Lynn had a winning major league record of 10-8, 3.96 and in the minors he was 244-191, 3.64. During off-seasons he was, at various times, a professional boxer, a wrestler, a rodeo cowboy and a railroad brakeman. 

He was ambidextrous, but never pitched left-handed in a game. However, sometimes on the day after he pitched, he would throw batting practice left-handed.

source: History By Bill Weiss & Marshall Wright

Red Lynn Stats -

Red Lynn Stats - Baseball Almanac


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