Originally Posted by eastchicagosoxfan
Terry Forster had a .397 career average. In 1972 he hit .526. Was there any talk of turning him into a full time hitter?
Chuck Tanner used him as a pinch hitter at least once with the White Sox. It was the difference between hitting .500 and .526. It was in the ninth inning of an end-of-the-season game against the Twins. He was hitting for Hank Allen, Dick Allen's brother, and came through with a game-tying single with two outs in the ninth. Another pitcher, Rich Geddes, who had pinch-run for Ed Herrmann, scored the winning run when Forster attempted to steal second, and the Twins catcher, George Mitterwald, threw the ball into center. Of course, that was a year before the American League voted to experiment with the DH for three years.
I don't think there was ever any talk about Forster becoming a position player. He was a singles hitter, and most of the hits I recall were bloops, but to his credit, he put the bat on the ball. Bobby Thigpen might have been a better hitter if he had hit professionally. Thigpen was an All-American DH and ended his college career with what could have been a game-winning homer with Will Clark and Raphael Palmiero on base, but he gave up a home run in the bottom of the inning to lose the game. Thigpen took batting practice with his first minor league team after signing with the Sox. That ended the next season. If he had come up with a National League team, Thigpen might have some fun offense numbers.