What does a young man do who feels called to be a baseball player and a doctor? If you’re Bobby Brown, you become both. At 88 today, Dr. Brown looks back on a stellar career: a four-time World Series champion with the New York Yankees as a third baseman with a career World Series batting average of .439 (1947; 1949-1951) and a successful, 25-year cardiologist in Fort Worth. As if that wasn’t enough, he began a 10-year stint in 1984 as president of the American League.
Recently at The Tradition-Prestonwood where he spoke at the Men’s Breakfast, Dr. Brown regaled guests with personal stories peppered with famous names: Yogi Berra, Casey Stengel, Joe DiMaggio – and Marilyn Monroe.
It wasn’t easy juggling medical school at Tulane University at the same time he was with the Yankees, he said. “When I was playing baseball, I would have a text book with me and snatch 10 minutes at a time to read,” said Dr. Brown. “My goal was to study a total of one-and-a-half hours a day.”
Dr. Brown regaled guests with personal stories peppered with famous names: Yogi Berra, Casey Stengel, Joe DiMaggio – and Marilyn Monroe.
The Tulane Dean of Medical School asked him while he was in school, “Why do you want to play baseball?” The dean understood – after the two compared salaries.
The stories were rich. In the locker room after one game, Yankee player Charlie Keller put a frog in the sock of an unsuspecting Joe DiMaggio. As Joe put on the sock, the ever-cool player became unhinged. Regarding Marilyn Monroe, the team knew things must be serious when she sent Joe an ice sculpture. “She was a wonderful girl,” said Dr. Brown.
“When I was playing baseball, I would have a text book with me and snatch 10 minutes at a time to read.”
Yogi Berra was his Newark Bears (Triple A) roommate, and the two became great friends. Years after baseball, they were in the same city and got together. Yogi was playing a lot of golf then. After hearing of Bobby’s typical, grueling day – 7 a.m. making rounds at the hospital, then seeing patients, making more rounds, getting home from 8 to 9 p.m., sometimes taking calls at 2 a.m. – Yogi looked at him seriously and said, “Where do you think you went wrong?”
Laughs were abundant and guests were wowed. After his talk, one gentleman stood up and said, “Sir, this was the best speech I’ve ever heard.” Add consummate speaker/entertainer to Dr. Bobby Brown’s resume.
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