Orioles Card "O" the Day

An intersection of two of my passions: baseball cards and the Baltimore Orioles. Updated daily?

Monday, June 16, 2014

Cal Ripken, Jr., 2007 Upper Deck Road to the Hall #CRTG29

I am not at all ready for great players from my childhood to start leaving us. But that's the reality that comes with today's sad news of Tony Gwynn's premature death; he was only 54, and lost a four-year struggle with salivary gland cancer stemming from his longtime use of smokeless tobacco. Gwynn's career paralleled Cal Ripken's pretty neatly. Each was born in the summer of 1960 and played solely for his hometown team: Gwynn with the San Diego Padres from 1982-2001, and Ripken with the Orioles from 1981-2001. Cal's O's won the World Series in 1983, and Tony's Padres won the N. L. pennant in 1984 but lost the Series to the Tigers. Both men had to wait until 1996 to return to the postseason, and each of them reached the 3,000 career hits milestone in 2000. In 2007 they went into the Hall of Fame together in their first year on the ballot. But now Tony Gwynn is gone, much too soon. I'd like to offer something profound, but such words are escaping me. I'll just say that he'll be missed.


Zach said...

Losing Bob Welch last week was tough enough, but seeing that Tony Gwynn passed was an even harder pill to swallow. He was a great hitter and wonderful ambassador to the game. I took it for granted that during the first 14 years of my life few things would remain the same, but I could always count on Tony Gwynn to bat over .300. Just like we will never see someone average 4 hits every 10 at-bats over a career, we will probably never see another player bat .338 over the course of their career.

Kevin said...

Well said, Zach.