One of Major League Baseball's biggest stars from the 1980s has a friend who could soon be getting his mail delivered to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.
Dale Murphy, a baseball legend for his time with the Atlanta Braves, is acquaintances with GOP presidential front-runner Mitt Romney. The retired outfielder tells Fox Sports South that he met Romney while his family was living in Boston for a few years during the late 1990s.
"He wasn’t involved in politics at that time, but we met him," Murphy said. "We lived in the same community there and got to know him and Ann and their kids. He came out to Utah for the Olympics in 2002 and then he ran for governor of Massachusetts. They’re good people and we were lucky to get to know them and be associated with them and now see them running for president. How often does someone you know -- not that we’re in touch with the Romneys – run for president? It's just really interesting, an interesting experience. That’s been fun."
Murphy, whose No. 3 jersey was retired by the Braves, didn't deny he's fully endorsing his former neighbor. "Oh sure. I've donated to his campaign and done some interviews and certainly have voiced my support for him," Murphy told Fox. "I think he would be great. I think he would be a fantastic leader. He's a fantastic guy with a fantastic family. I have a lot of confidence in him. I'm a supporter. Definitely."
Living in Utah, Dale has had a few chances to get involved in politics, but says he "decided not to get involved."
Although he's been retired since 1993, Murphy recently became very active in social media and surprised himself by falling in love with Twitter. He has 22,000 followers.
"I think Twitter is a unique thing that is possible now with our technology. I don’t even know what you call it, other than a thing. It’s a very interesting social media platform. I’ve been able to connect with fans from the old days, make new friends. It’s helped me as far as my speaking and opportunities. It’s been a lot of fun."
A two-time National League MVP (1982, '83), Murphy nevertheless is considered a long shot to reach Cooperstown. "I’m kind of one of those guys who is like, we’ll see. If it happens, it would be fantastic," Murphy said. "I’d say I’m fairly optimistic about getting in with some of the veterans’ committee. I’m not optimistic about getting voted in. That would be totally unprecedented. Next year is my last year of eligibility on the ballot. I think I got only about 15 percent or so. I don’t have any visions of being voted in, but maybe with the veterans’ committee."
Murphy hit fewer than 400 homers (398), was a career .265 hitter, and appeared in a grand total of three playoff games over his 18 seasons. He lives with his wife, Nancy, in Alpine, Utah, a small town just outside of Salt Lake City. The couple has raised eight children.
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