Bob Hamelin: A Life

Every spring, much fun is made regarding players adding muscle or losing weight or having done yoga, or eating 20 raw eggs upside down every morning, or carving pentagrams into their pectorals.

Even the aptly named Bob Hamelin, whose dumpy bottoms are forever burned into my memory, participated in the “best shape of his career” gimmick:

A Hamelin is born; a Hamelin dies.

My visceral response to this, with a player of Hamelin’s — ahem — stature, what’s the point? Hamelin’s fat and he will probably always be fat. Just let him play the game fat. Then I think of how he just couldn’t stay healthy, had eye problems, and then suddenly quit baseball altogether in the middle of a game with the Toledo Mud Hens . . .

Baseball does that to me. Here, I thought I was going to make a big joke, title this stupid, petty post “Bob Hamelin in Best Shape of His Career: Round”. But then I look into it, and I see the arch of a human life, and I feel ashamed.

Hamelin has returned to the business of baseball as a scout. He even went to “scout school” to do it. He currently is with the Blue Jays organization. I am imagining, now, that it took some courage to come back to the game that he loved, that handed him success, then yanked it away. Hamelin is far from unique in this experience, I am sure. But each time I come across a story like his — amidst the stats, the snark, the hotness of players’ wives, the joyously dorky infographic — I am humbled again.

Lest ye forget, his signature reminds: 1994 RoY.

Hire Robert J. Baumann to live-blog your next birthday party, family reunion, or corporate event. You will not want to forget it soon.

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Sixto L.
Sixto L.

Wow, rookie of the year. He actually beat our Manny Ramirez for the honor that year. Even more surprisingly, Rusty Greer finished third. I love baseball!