No One Told Him He Couldn’t

One of my favorite major league baseball players was Jim Abbott. He was a left-handed pitcher who played for the California Angels, New York Yankees, and Chicago White Sox through the 1990s. He was one of the few players who went directly from playing college baseball at Michigan to the major leagues. But that is not the main reason he was such a memorable pitcher.

He made millions of dollars and had nearly a .500 record as a pitcher. His best year was 1991 when he won 18 games for the Angels. But that still is not the most memorable fact about Jim Abbott.

Abbott pitched a no-hitter when he played for the Yankees against the Cleveland Indians in 1993.  Obviously very significant, but still not the most memorable aspect of his career.

No, the most memorable trait of Jim Abbott was that he had no right hand. He won nearly 100 games in the major leagues with no right hand.

After one game, a reporter asked him how he learned to play baseball at the major league level with one hand?  Jim’s response was, “No one ever told me I had an impairment. If they had, I probably would never have played baseball.” 

Too often the limitations we face are the ones we have in our minds. Let us be careful not to place limitations on ourselves or others.