On Monday, Mark “The Bird” Fidrych, a former pitcher for the Detroit Tigers, was killed on his farm in Northborough, Massachusetts, around 2:30 PM ET. His neighbor found him dead lying underneath his truck. He was only 54 years old.
After an autopsy on Fidrych’s body, Massachusetts authorities revealed that Fidrych suffocated after his clothes became entangled in a spinning part of the truck he was working on.
District Attorney Joseph Early Jr. said, “He appeared to have been working on the truck when his clothes became tangled in the truck’s power takeoff shaft.” A power takeoff shaft spins at a high speed and is sometimes used to power another piece of equipment.
Even though Fidrych’s pitching style was often called “wacky”, he was a very good player. He used to talk to the ball, talk to himself, and smooth out the mound dirt between innings. He played five seasons with the Detroit Tigers before having to retire due to injuries. Fidrych was known in his hometown as a generous person with a friendly demeanor.