Thank you, Cal

7/29/07 in MLB   |   Eric_   |   7716 respect

It's hard to put into words while Cal Ripken, Jr. meant to Baltimore, to the Orioles franchise, and to Orioles fans. For fans around my age, Cal was the Orioles. We didn't get to see the Earl Weaver years, or Jim Palmer, or Boog, or the Robinson, or most of the other Oriole greats. We had Cal though. Players came and went during the 80s and 90s, but Cal was always there. Every game. Every inning.

Yes, the Streak is overrated. Yes, he would've benefited from days off. The stats bare this out. His brilliance was gone after 1991. And no, the Streak didn't save baseball. You know what, though, I wouldn't trade the memories of Sept. 6, 1995 for anything (well, maybe a championship).

No one can say Cal didn't have a sense of the moment. The night he tied Gehrig? Homered. The night he passed Gehrig? Homered. Final All-Star Game? Homered. His postseason numbers: .336/.411/.455.

Things are different now. The Orioles are in a decade-long malaise, and as such I've become more cynical and jaded in my fandom. Cal is the personification of my childhood, of me becoming a baseball fan. Every game. Every inning. Cliche, yes, but very true.

So, on the day when Ripken reaches baseball immortality. I just have one thing to say.

Thank you, Cal.
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7/30/07   |   MCnine   |   7 respect

towsongirl12 wrote:
Awesome post , Congrats Cal!!

a Towson girl CAN'T be a tribe fan!

7/30/07   |   donteisking20

you were a great player Cal and will be a idol for as long as kids play

7/30/07   |   towsongirl12   |   11 respect

Awesome post , Congrats Cal!!

7/29/07   |   Ryan   |   153 respect

OK.  I just finally got to see the introduction speech by Ripken.


Overall, not a bad speech.


But what was the deal with John Travolta crying in the background?????

7/29/07   |   MCnine   |   7 respect

this is actually a bittersweet day for me. the pride i feel seeing Cal go in today is enormous, his career spanned my entire childhood - young adult life. the reason today is bittersweet for me is that O's fans have nothing left to look forward to. Them team has been unsuccessful and the are no h.o.f'ers on tap for us in the future.

7/29/07   |   Nick S

Nice post Eric!

7/29/07   |   Ryan   |   153 respect

Very well put!  I, too, was a fan of Cal growing up.  Even though my favorite team has always been the Phillies, I've always followed the Orioles.  Since I grew up in-between Philadelphia and Baltimore, our newspaper covered both.  (The '83 series was painful for me as a young fan)


I'm glad to say I was able to see Cal play a few times, including a game against the Phillies in his last season.


In my opinion, he is the living example of all that is good about baseball.