The six foot right hand hitting outfielder was drafted in the 17th round of the 1966 draft by the local, San Francisco Giants. Hahn played three seasons at A ball then in 1968 he was picked up as a Rule 5 draft pick by the expansion Montreal Expos.
He was the original Montreal Expos centerfielder in the first game ever played in the history of the franchise, on April 8, 1969 at Shea Stadium. The 20 year old went 0-3 that day in an exciting 11-10 win over the New York Mets. He was the first Expo to ever field a ball as the Mets Tommie Agee led off the first inning with a single to Hahn in center. After just five games he was 1-9 (.111) and was sent back down to the minors for the rest of the season. He played out the year at AAA Vancouver in the Pacific Coast League, where he hit .268.
In 1970 he returned to Montreal at the end of April, getting two hits & a pair of walks in his return. That year Hahn played in 82 games, batting .255 with eight doubles & eight RBIs in 149 at-bats. Hahn would never prove to be a power hitter by any means, he hit no HRs that season & just seven in 997 career at bats. He did show some speed with good base running abilities stealing four bases in six attempts in his rookie year. At the end of Spring Training 1971 he was traded to the New York Mets for 1969 World Series hero Ron Swoboda.
Don Hahn made his Mets debut in the fourth game of the '71 season, appearing as a pinch runner. He made pinch running appearances before getting his first Mets at bat, where he drew a walk as a pinch hitter. On April 29th he would get his first Mets hit, coming as a pinch hitter against the Cardinals in St. Louis. He got his first start in May & would saw some playing time in centerfield when Tommie Agee got hurt & was limited to 118 games.
On June 20th he helped spark a 9th inning rally when he singled off the Philadelphia Phillies Bucky Brandon with the bases loaded. In the next at bat pinch hitter Duffy Dyer singled to drive in the game winning runs. By mid June Hahn brought his average up to a season best .288 before falling off from there.
On September 5th at Philadelphia’s Veteran Stadium, Hahn hit his first career HR. It was an inside the parker, and came off of pitcher Woodie Fryman. t was a historic HR, because it was the first inside the park HR to be hit in the new Veterans Stadium which had opened the previous year.
Overall in 98 games Hahn hit .236 with one HR, five doubles, 11 RBIs and two stolen bases. In 1972 he had gone 0-6 as a pinch hitter through May 10th. On that day, the Mets acquired the legendary veteran Willie Mays, in his triumphant return to New York. At that point it seemed that with Tommie Agee, a young rookie slugger named John Milner & Mays, that there would be little room for the weak hitting Hahn.
He spent most of the year at AAA Tidewater batting .282 with 13 stolen bases, returning to the Mets in September. On the season he saw action in only 17 games, batting a measly .162 (6-37). In ten games in the outfield he made eight put outs with no errors.
At the end of Spring Training 1973, Hahn was sent back to AAA Tidewater where he hit.274 with 7 HRs & 27 RBIs in 53 games played. But up on the big league club, the Mets were having problems filling in a centerfielder. Willie Mays was at the end of his career & could only play sparingly. Rich Chiles was gone after just eight games, he & Jim Gosger never worked out.
Hahn played hard & had never ending determination which got him the starting centerfield job by June. He would play well defensively in 83 games in center field, posting a .988 fielding % (third best among NL centerfielders) making just two errors. Mays would play 45 games (.990 fielding %).
Hahn will always be remembered for a famous outfield colision that occurred on July 7th, 1973 at Shea Stadium. Hahn was playing centerfield in a game against the Atlanta Braves. The Braves batter; The Roadrunner Ralph Garr, hit a fly ball into the left centerfield gap. Hahn was running over at full speed as was left fielder George "the Stork" Theodore when the two collided hard into each other. The ball rolled to the wall & the Road Runner rounded the bases.
After the violent outfield collision Theodore had to be removed from the field on a stretcher. Hahn was able to walk away, leaving just a bit shaken up. The moment has lived on forever, caught on film in the Mets 1974 yearbook.
On August 27th, he had a four hit day at Shea Stadium against the San Diego Padres. The next day he drove in four more runs in a 4-1 win at St. Louis. Although he dropped off twenty points in batting average during the month of September, he did drive in seven runs.
On September 7th in Montreal, the Mets & Expos had a close 1-1 tie going on into the 15th inning. Two of the league's best relievers were now in a classic pitching duel, Tug McGraw had pitched six innings of relief & Montreal's Mike Marshall would pitch eight innings of relief. In the top of the 15th Hahn's sac fly broke the tie & put New York ahead 2-1. McGraw helped his own cause, following with a two run single.
On September 18th he broke a 4-4 tie in the top of the 9th inning at Pittsburgh, in a game against the first place Pirates. Hahn came through off reliever Dave Guisti, with a single scoring Rusty Staub & Teddy Martinez. That night the Mets pulled within four games of the Pirates.
In the Mets 1973 NL Pennant winning season, Hahn hit .229 with two HRs, ten doubles, a .285 on base % & 22 RBIs in 262 at bats while playing in 93 overall games.
Post Season: In the 1973 NLCS against the Cincinnati Reds, Hahn played in all five games, hitting .235, (4 for 17). In Game #5 he drove in a run on a ground out force play in the Mets four run 5th inning.
In the 1973 World Series he played in all seven games going 9- 29 batting .241 with a double a triple & two RBIs. In Game #2 at Oakland, Hahn tied up the game with an infield single, scoring Cleon Jones. The A's third baseman Sal Bando could not come up with the ball as Cleon Jones crossed the plate. Hahn would score ona Darold Knowles error later that inning.
In Game #4 at Shea Stadium, Hahn singled off the A's Blue Moon Odom, to lead off the Mets 4th inning. He then scored the Mets fifth run of the game, when Felix Millan reached on an error. The Mets went on to a 6-1 win evening the Series at two games each.
In Game #5 at Shea Stadium, Hahn’s triple off Vida Blue drove in Jerry Grote for one of the two Mets runs, in the 2-0 Jerry Koosman/ Tug McGraw shut out. Hahn had not hit a triple all season and only had four others in his career. The two runs were all the Mets needed and they went up three games to two in the Series, behind Jerry Koosman & Tug McGraw’s combined shut out. Earlier in the game, Hahn made a fantastic catch near the wall in deep center field to save a hit.
In 1974 Hahn had his best season at the plate, starting out with two hits on Opening Day. In May he hit two HRs in the same week, both coming on a road trip to Wrigley Field & Busch Stadium. In June he hit safely in 10 of 14 games, with six multi hit games, batting .320 by the end of the month. He entered August on an eight game hit streak and on August 9th helped beat the Reds with a three run HR off Fred Norman leading to a 4-1 Mets victory.
On the year he played in a career high 110 games, batting .251 with 4 HRs, 14 doubles, 37 walks a .337 on base % & 28 RBIs. In centerfield he made eight assists with a .987 fielding % while making three errors in 228 chances. After the 1974 season, Hahn would get traded to the Philadelphia Phillies, along with popular Mets reliever Tug McGraw & Dave Schneck, in exchange for John Stearns, Del Unser, & relief pitcher Mac Scarce.
In 1975 Hahn only played in nine games for Philadelphia, before getting released in late May He would go on to the St. Louis Cardinals (seven games) & San Diego Padres (34 games) that same year. Overall he hit only .179 in 50 games with three extra base hits. He played in the AAA Pacific Coast League the next two years, retiring from the games in 1977 at age 30. Hahn finished his seven year career playing in 454 games with a .236 average, 235 hits 7 HRs, 38 doubles, 4 triples, 122 walks a .319 on base % & 74 RBIs. In the outfield he posted a .985 fielding % with 20 assists.
Quotes: Hahn's old minor league teammate was former Giants outfielder Bobby Bonds ``On the long bus rides during the winter leagues we would sit together and he would proudly boast that his 4-year-old son Barry would be a great athlete one day,'' Hahn, recalls. ``He said his kid had so much energy that he had to run around the block a few times before he was tired enough to fall asleep.''
Retirement: After his playing days, Hahn went into the Real Estate business in the San Francisco Bay Area. He has also appeared at Mets Fantasy Camps.
Hahn had two sons; Dustin & Brent Hahn who played in the minor leagues.