Jack Morris

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Jack Morris is a former Major League pitcher and was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in July 2018. In his acceptance speech, Morris gave the glory to God. “I believe in the human heart and human spirit, and no analytics can define them. There is no telling what you can accomplish if you have the will and desire to try. God blessed me with a gift and it was meant to be shared with others. My life in baseball has been an incredible journey, and I am grateful for everything. I want to thank you again for sharing this wonderful day with me. Praise be to God,” he said before closing his remarks.[1]

Morris was born on May 16, 1955, in Saint Paul, Minnesota. Former Brigham Young University baseball coach Glen Tuckett recruited Morris from Highland Park High School, Saint Paul, Minnesota, in 1973. Both Jack and his brother Tom were brought to BYU to play ball. Tom—after pitching Triple-A ball before retiring—went on to be part of the BYU geology department faculty, while Jack went to the majors and is now a color commentator for the Detroit Tigers.

Jack played for BYU for only two seasons and was selected by the Detroit Tigers in the fifth round of the 1976 MLB draft. He signed a one-year contract with the Minnesota Twins in 1991, then signed with the Toronto Blue Jays for two seasons. He was with the Cleveland Indians in 1994, but was released in August, three days before the season was ended by a strike. He attempted a comeback with the Cincinnati Reds during 1995 spring training, but then retired. He played briefly in 1996 with the independent Northern League.

Jack is perhaps best-remembered for his 10-inning performance in 1991, which was a 1-0 shutout in game 7 for the Twins over Atlanta. He also won more games than any pitcher in the majors during the 1980s. He was also the highest paid pitcher in the American League for about five years.

According to Wikipedia, he was a five-time All-Star (1981, 1984, 1985, 1987, and 1991), and played on four World Series Championship teams (1984 Tigers, 1991 Minnesota Twins, and 1992–1993 Toronto Blue Jays). He went 3–0 in the 1984 postseason with two complete game victories in the 1984 World Series, and 4–0 in the 1991 postseason with a ten-inning complete game victory in Game 7 of the 1991 World Series.

Morris won the Babe Ruth Award in both 1984 and 1991, and was named World Series MVP in 1991. While he gave up the most hits, most earned runs, and most home runs of any pitcher in the 1980s, he also started the most games, pitched the most innings, and had the most wins of any pitcher in that decade. He is one of seven players in MLB history to have won back-to back World Series championships on different teams.[2]

Tuckett noted that Morris was highly competitive and could have played wide receiver on BYU’s football team or started on the basketball team.[3]

Morris is a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.