RIP Henry Aaron
Despite getting racist death threats and hate mail, Henry Aaron kept playing ball with grace and dignity. RIP to one of the elite talents of baseball. Rest in Peace.
People were saying a black man should not break Babe Ruth's record. If Babe were alive, he would have been right there at the ballpark to congratulate him the night Hank socked number 715. Probably would have invited him to have a beer at the pub with him.
Joe Torre was a teammate of Aaron's ... had nice things to say about him on TV today.
I was in the stadium in Philly for a Braves-Phillies game when Hank Aaron had (I think) 713. Being born in Georgia, but living just North of Philly at the time, I was cheering for the Braves, which wasn't particularly popular, but I was in early High School at the time, so no biggie. People for the most part were a bit more mellow then. I always had the greatest of respect for him and admired how he persevered, despite the ridiculous hate and anger directed at him. People can be ignorant, but above all he stayed a gentleman through all that, and to the end. He remains one of my heroes. Rest in Peace and Strength, Hammerin' Hank!
Hammerin Hank was a class act. Unfortunately you’re not going to see pro athletes like him anymore
Hi, Phil ... you must have been at the Vet in 73, because Hank's first trip to Philly in 74 came when he had passed the magic 715 number.
The legacy of Hammerin Hank will be a forever example to us all.
He did it without walkup music, without heavy tattoos, with dignity, with eloquence, he crossed all race borders and had fans of all types(not just fans that have the need to identify with race every time we talk about them), and he was a respected elder statesman for the game in his later years. Few, if any "modern athletes" have any of these qualities, which is why pro sports, as a whole, is a wasteland of bloated egos and shameful shallowness.
I guess now the greatest living baseball player left is Willie Mays. Behind Mays, boy, I would have to think hard about that, maybe Sandy Koufax? Hard to believe that the great players of my youth are now in their 70-80's. Time waits for no one.
I knew it was '72 or '73, but wasn't sure which, since I only lived there for 9th and 10th grade, then moved to NC (yet again). I also saw the Washington Senators vs. the Detroit Tigers in the D.C. area back when I was in Webelos and had been playing in Little League. The only 2 pro games I ever saw live.
Because he finished up in the AL with the Brewers (to finish his career in Milwaukee) I saw Hank in the following stadia: Connie Mack and Veterans' Stadium in Philly, The Polo Grounds, Shea and Yankee Stadium in New York, Municipal Stadium in Cleveland, Memorial Stadium in Baltimore. Seeing games in some of those places makes me certifiably old.
Frank Robinson was the Indians' player manager when I saw Aaron play there ... I also visited the Pro Football Hall of Fame on the same trip.
Sad, he was a hero for sure. Strange that he passed away since he looked like he was in good shape two weeks ago when he got his Covid vaccine and posted the video on Twitter.
Might have been some kind of an allergy nobody knew about ... guess we'll hear more about this because there will be some kind of investigation for sure.
My tribute to Aaron in insidewarren.com ... at least being old gives a guy lots of memories for column writing ... RIP Hank and thanks for so many memories.
Thanks Andy for the informative column. When I was a kid, my friends and I played a board game called APBA. The game consisted of individual player cards, boards, and the roll of the dice. Aaron's 1973 card was one of the best and was in high demand to be selected. 2020 saw HOF's Seaver, Brock, Morgan, Gibson, Ford, Niekro, and Kaline pass away and now Aaron. I'm 60 and watched many of these greats in person. So sad to see them go. RIP.
Many, myself included, feel that Dick Allen, who died in December, is the best player not yet included in the Hall of Fame.
Allen, known as Richie during the early years of his career, sang a song called Echoes of November, which you could look up on You Tube. Some considered him controversial, but he was a straight shooter with the media, at least judging by my interactions with him.
When the Phillies traded him after the 1969 season, many Phillies fans hated him, but he was welcomed back universally to cheers and well wishes in 1975. Having endured racism in the Deep South in the 60s, Allen had a perspective on what it was like for Aaron, that many of us could not have experienced.
Richie Allen- interesting notes conveyed in the dirt by 1st base with his spikes.
But NO denying the power, style , grace and class of Hammering Hank.
Mike I, good memories also of playing APBA, love rolling those 66's with most Aaron cards from his formative years. Love APBA, played thousands of games with the boards, including the advanced game.
Aaron and Mathews, Eddie Mathews that is, hold the record for the most home runs by two teammates, 863.
As Casey Stengel was often given credit for, "You could look it up"
Ol Casey, the man who said he'd never make the mistake of being 70 again, who told his players to line up alphabetically by height, who said the Mets' first pick in the expansion draft was a catcher because if you don't have a catcher, every pitch would be a passed ball :-D ... the ole perfessor who won five straight World Series crowns.
I grew up being a huge Aaron fan. Some 30 years ago I was at a big convention and a corporation had managed to get Aaron to sign baseballs for 1 hour. It was terrific meeting him, sign a baseball, and hand it to me. I felt so lucky.
The notable baseball people I've gotten autographs from include Brooks Robinson, Mike Schmidt, Bobby Thomson, Phil Rizzuto, Paul Blair, Bobby Shantz and 1993 Phillie Dave Hollins.
Got them by attending various baseball clinics and charity golf events. That Aaron ball will skyrocket in value now, now that he's no longer signing them ... on this earth ... he's up there in the next dimension with guys like Mickey Mantle and The Babe ... signing them for the angels.
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