When Carl Yastrzemski retired in 1983 he didn’t go on a farewell tour. That type of thing wasn’t done in baseball at that time, and Yaz wouldn’t have been comfortable doing it anyway.
Carl Yastrzemski didn’t like being the center of attention. He was a fairly simple son of the middle class, a hard-working ballplayer who never felt at ease in the role of “superstar.”
Carl Yastrzemski’s final season
Ironically, on September 12, 1983, a few weeks before he hung up his batting gloves for the final time, Yastrzemski hit what would have been his final home run, a blast off the Orioles at Fenway Park that landed in the visitors’ bullpen, among a flock of Birds. But that game ended up being rained out, and Yaz never hit another homer.
The Red Sox slugger started 14 more games but didn’t reach the seats. His final home game was October 2 against the Indians. Yaz had an infield single and a walk. In his final at-bat in the seventh inning, he popped out to second base off Dan Spillner.
Here’s video of the “lost” home run, which would have been homer #453 of Yastrzemski’s career.
It came off a guy who would retire the next year himself… fellow future Hall of Famer Jim Palmer
The guy who gave up the home run would retire himself the next season… fellow future Hall of Famer Jim Palmer.
Interesting note on Palmer: he may be the only player who tried to make a comeback AFTER he was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame. In the early 1990s he toyed with the idea of coming back to professional baseball.