This was a letter to the editor of the Enquirer.
Local hero Kevin Youkilis could have played as a Red
The come-from-behind victory of the Boston Red Sox over the Cleveland Indians was in no small part due to Cincinnati native Kevin Youkilis. He continued his errorless season and hit a staggering .500 at the plate. A recent article in Sports Illustrated revealed a story about a youngster who encountered neither support nor accolades as he progressed through high school and college. Having coached Kevin from ages 5 through 12, I thought that I would provide an additional "story behind the story."
Kevin was the most enthusiastic player that I can ever remember in three decades of coaching. Yet, he was never the heralded "star." At Blue Ash, Ohio State and national championships, Kevin was a steady performer but far from sensational. Yet his work ethic and passion were second to none. He simply would never quit.
When I was the team ophthalmologist with the Reds, I pleaded with Jim Bowden to consider Kevin. But on paper, he did not fit the typical mold that excites baseball people who are unable to evaluate desire, determination and heart. Otherwise, the Reds would boast another local outstanding product joining the ranks of Ken Griffey Jr. and Barry Larkin.
Robert H. Osher
professor of ophthalmology,
University of Cincinnati College of Medicine
medical director emeritus, Cincinnati Eye Institute