Lenny Dykstra, the former all-star center fielder for the New York Mets and Philadelphia Phillies, has gone through a few rough patches in his post-baseball career but now seems to have embarked on a new path. After stints in prison, bankruptcy, and drug rehab, Dykstra, 55, is now studying Torah.
According to the New York Post, Dykstra attends a weekly Torah study session with Chabad’s Rabbi Shmuel Metzger. The former slugger, who, as a Met, had a walk-off home run in game three of the ‘86 World Series, was raised Christian and has no plans to convert. “I’m on a spiritual journey,” he told the Post. “I’m trying to find if God exists. I want to deal with people who are smarter than me.”
Some of Dykstra’s trademark style seems to have carried over into his new religious studies, judging by the Post’s report:
A few weeks ago, Dykstra invited The Post to tag along to Metzger’s discussion on Joseph — the slave who became a leader—from the Book of Genesis. It’s a story of triumph over circumstance to which the retired athlete can relate. Mostly, he pointed out, because Joseph was in prison.
In 2013, Dykstra served just over six months of a three-year sentence for grand theft auto and fraud. (While incarcerated, he claims, he was beaten by guards who knocked out his teeth. “My first meal was a steak, medium rare,” he said of his new choppers, which he got in November.)
Throughout the class, he scribbled notes — musings on the size of Joseph’s manhood as well as how he wasn’t hindered by defeat. Dykstra also wrote down a quote from the book “MoneyBall,” in which fellow former Met Billy Beane said that Dykstra “had no concept of failure.”
But after one of the study’s six attendees finished a soliloquy on Joseph’s isolation, Dykstra looked up from his paper.
“You lost me, lady.”
Still, no one balked. Not even when he suggested Joseph likely pleasured himself a lot in jail.
Tablet’s afternoon newsletter edited by Jacob Siegel and Park MacDougald.