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Hometown Hero: Ryne Sandberg

Posted by Bob Swerski on February 5, 2008

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In the days of baseball cheating, scandals, and cutting corners, no one has provided more class to the game then former Cubs second baseman Ryne Sandberg. For those of you who don’t know, a Hall of Famer, Ryno has complied some of the best numbers ever seen at second base. To go along with his 10 consecutive All Star appearances and his 9 consecutive Gold Gloves, Ryno has posted a MLB 2nd baseman record .989 lifetime fielding percentage.

It is more then just numbers for Ryno, which are amazing, but about the man he was and the Cubs legend which he became. Sandberg drew national attention on June 23, 1984 in what would become known as the “Sandberg Game.” During the nationally telecast game, the Cubs were down 8-9 in the bottom of the ninth to their rival St. Louis Cardinals. The premier closer was on the mound, HOF Bruce Sutter who saved 45 different games in 1984, but this was of little relevance when Ryno belted a solo shot into the left field bleachers to tie the game and send it into extra innings. Then in the 10th, the Cardinals scored 2 more runs and it looked all but over for the loveable losers. However, in the tenth lightning struck twice as Ryno belted a 2 run homer deeper into the left field bleachers to tie the game again. The Cubs would go on to win it in the 11th and Ryno would go on to be loved by Cubs’ fans forever.

Ryno was simply the greatest offensive and defensive second basemen ever to grace the hallowed grounds of Wrigley Field. He did it without taking steroids and cutting corners. He did it with class, hard-work, and with respect. Young kids should listen to Ryno’s HOF induction speech and take these words to heart, “Make a great play, act like you’ve done it before, get a big hit, look for the third base coach and get ready to run the bases, hit a home run, put your head down, drop the bat, run around the bases, because the name on the front is a lot more important than the name on the back. That’s respect.”

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4 Responses to “Hometown Hero: Ryne Sandberg”

  1. Matt said

    Ryne is a personal hero of my cousin as well. He’s been a lifelong Cubbies fan and makes a yearly pilgrimage to Wrigley Field.

  2. There really isn’t much to not like around Ryno

  3. Just2Cocky said

    Kudos for that…..Ryno was a class act all the way, and one of my all-time favorite players.

  4. An awesome player! I agree that when you talk about Sandberg, what’s not to like?

    Steven
    http://www.ACCvsSEC.com

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