Whatever happened to Daryl Strawberry? You remember Strawberry, the lanky, 200-pound right fielder, who helped the NY Mets win the World Series in 1986. In his debut year with them, 1983, he received the National League Rookie of the Year award. He ended his major league career with the NY Yankees in 1999, after helping them win the World Series in 1996 and 1999. He played in eight All-Star games during his career. What team wouldn’t want him on their roster? “I was a big shot then,” he says. “I love that I was a great player, and won championships, but I was always more driven. I knew there had to be more than just putting on a uniform and hitting grand slams and making millions of dollars.”
Something gnawed inside. “I always believed there was a greater purpose to life,” he says, reflecting on his emptiness in the midst of his successful career.
When fame, money, and success didn’t fully fill Daryl’s life, he covered that emptiness with alcohol and drugs. One of his long-time friends watched Daryl, and wondered. “He’s been a friend of mine almost 30 years,” says former Mets pitcher Bobby Ojeda. “You wonder how bad he would wind up before he gets it. Or if he would ever get it.” After crack houses, prison, two ex-wives, and six children he also acknowledges the enormous pain and shame he brought his family.
What, if anything, would turn Daryl’s life around? Where would he find that purpose? If you also sense an emptiness in your life, maybe what Daryl found could help you.
Watch for next week’s blog to find out what happened to Daryl Strawberry.