One of the most talented baseball players to ever swing a bat returned to the Capital City to speak about his journey in hopes of helping others.

Darryl Strawberry sat down Wednesday with 16 WAPT sports director Ray Coleman to discuss everything from his playing days to his battle with addiction.

Strawberry is an eight-time Major League Baseball All-Star, a four-time World Series champion and was the National League Rookie of the Year in 1983. And, he cut his teeth on the professional level in Jackson. Strawberry played AA baseball with the Jackson Mets, a minor league affiliate of the New York franchise. He quickly rose through the minor league ranks as one of the best talents in the game.

1982 Jackson Mets

1982 Jackson Mets

“The owner at that time was Con Maloney (of Cowboy Maloney’s Electric City). So, if I would hit home runs, he would give me televisions,” Strawberry said. “Jackson was a great place for me to play that year because I became a man and a baseball player. From that point on I knew who I was. I developed real quick. Everybody here was great. It was great to be here. I really enjoyed my time here and I think that’s why I became such a great player, because of that year I had in Jackson.”

Strawberry will serve as the keynote speaker at Thursday’s 66th Annual Night of Honor at The South Warehouse in downtown Jackson, which will honor Ruth Ann Rigby, who among many positions, has served more than 20 years on the Board of Directors for the National Council of Alcoholism and Drug Dependence.

Strawberry’s connection with the event is that he was once an admitted Drug abuser. Now, He’s is now an ordained minister, and even established his own recovery center and treatment program. And he wants to be able to use his platform to hopefully help someone conquer their addiction.

“It’s important to help (and) to get involved. It’s important to know that it’s in your community and stop turning the other way. It’s everywhere, and we have a lot of young people who are dying. It’s a serious problem,” Strawberry said.

Doors open at 6 p.m. at The South Warehouse. Tap here for ticket information.

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Baseball great Darryl Strawberry stopped by the 16 WAPT studio to talk to Sports Director Ray Coleman.