Player Profile: Ron Swoboda

A brief description of the career of Ron Swoboda.

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Oh, those Miracle Mets of 1969. If nothing exemplified the Miracle Mets, it was unreliable players rising above their standards and doing the unexpected. No player embodied this more than Ron Swoboda.

Many that watched Ron Swoboda play might wonder how he even made a major league roster. He was certainly a good player but Mets fans would cringe at anything hit in the air towards his tentatively upheld glove. He earned the nickname “Rocky” not for his tough demeanor but rather for his complete inability to field fly balls. He was destined for obscurity.

But Swoboda wanted nothing of obscurity. Like every member of the Miracle Mets, he just needed his chance. It came in Game 4 of the World Series. Orioles fans may remember the moment better than many Mets fans. Brooks Robinson smacks a ball into the outfield directly at Swoboda. Many Mets fans knew the game was over. There was no way Swoboda was going to OH MY GOD HE MADE THE CATCH! Ron Swoboda. Rocky. An outfielder so bad that even Reggie Jackson and Manny Ramirez would be justified in mocking his fielding ability. He made a catch so spectacular that he will forever be emblazoned upon the history of baseball. Swoboda stretched horizontally now caught on film forever.

Swoboda became immortal.

But if people should remember anything about Swoboda it is that he loved the game and he is one of the few players that doesn’t rewrite his past. He admits his flaws, his jealousies, and his complete inability to catch a fly ball.

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