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Pat Kelly, 61; All-Star Outfielder Turned to Evangelism After 15-Year Baseball Career

October 04, 2005|From Associated Press

Former All-Star outfielder Pat Kelly, who played for five teams during a 15-year major league career, has died. He was 61.

An evangelist with Maryland-based Life Line Ministries, he died of a heart attack Sunday in Chambersburg, Pa.

Born Harold Patrick Kelly in Philadelphia, the fleet-footed outfielder was 23 when he played his first major league game with the Minnesota Twins on Sept. 6, 1967. He played in 20 games over two seasons with Minnesota, then spent two years with the Kansas City Royals.

Kelly went on to play for the Chicago White Sox from 1971 to 1976 and the Baltimore Orioles from 1977 to 1980 before closing out his career with 48 games for the Cleveland Indians in 1981.

In 1,385 games, he hit .264, with 76 homers, 418 RBIs and 250 stolen bases.

Kelly was selected to play in the 1973 All-Star game during a season in which he hit .280 in a career-high 144 games with the White Sox. He played in the 1979 World Series as a member of the Orioles.

Kelly was known as much for his religious conviction as his left-handed swing. During his stint in Baltimore, the following exchange between Kelly and fiery manager Earl Weaver supposedly occurred:

"Skip, don't you want me to walk with the Lord?" Kelly asked.

To which Weaver replied, "I'd rather you walk with the bases loaded."

After his retirement in 1982, Kelly became executive director of Christian Family Outreach, a Christian family ministry. In 1987, he moved on to Life Line Ministries.

Information on survivors and funeral services was not immediately available.

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