THIS IS EPISODE 347 OF THE SPORTS SPECTRUM PODCAST
Jim Leyritz played 11 years in the major leagues with the Yankees, Angels, Rangers, Red Sox, Padres and Dodgers. Known for his versatility, Leyritz played catcher, first base, third base and the outfield.
He was undrafted after playing his college ball at Kentucky and was signed by the New York Yankees as a free agent in 1985. Five years later, he made his New York Yankees debut on June 8, 1990. During his time with the Bronx Bombers, Leyritz hit two of the most memorable home runs in Yankees playoff history. In 1995, he hit a walk-off 15th inning home run in the 1995 Divisional Series against Seattle at Yankee Stadium. One year later, in Game 4 of the 1996 World Series, Leyritz hit a game-tying three-run home run off Braves closer Mark Wohlers, which would catapult the Yankees to three straight wins and their first championship in 18 years.
After 1996, Leyritz played for four different teams — Angels and Rangers in 1997, Red Sox and Padres in 1998. He returned to the World Series in 1998 with San Diego, and again in 1999, winning his second ring with the Yankees.
Leyritz’s journey after baseball is one of fame, tragedy, redemption and faith. On this episode of the podcast, we talk to him about his baseball success, winning two World Series titles, his post-baseball troubles away from the field, and finding freedom in Christ after returning to church in California.