Monday, November 22, 2010
Stan the Man is Ninety
Yesterday, the greatest all-around baseball player of all time celebrated his 90th birthday. Who said "Only the good die young?"
The greatest fan Stan Musial ever had sent me a link to a post about the The Man on the American Thinker Blog yesterday.
As the Nuns always told us, a man can be judged by the friends (or enemies) he makes. Stan Musial apparently never made an enemy (even Ty Cobb liked him), and two of his best fiends are, like him, men of great character. Listen to what fellow St. Louis Cardinal and Hall of Famer Red Schoendienst, and Cardinal Hall of Fame Broadcaster Jack Buck had to say about him, as quoted on the American Thinker post.
Red Schoendienst: Stan is such a personal guy. A lot of times he and I would go visit kids in hospitals whenever we were on the road in Philadelphia , Pittsburgh or someplace. He didn’t want publicity for it and he didn’t do it to seek recognition or humanitarian awards, he just did it because he thought it was the right thing to do and he enjoyed making other people happy and maybe giving them a small ray of sunshine to brighten up their lives. That was the kind of guy he was as a player, and he is still that kind of guy today.
Jack Buck: Musial and I have become the best of friends. I knew how great a ballplayer he was, and it was a treat to meet him. He’s the sort of person that when you hear so much about him, you think to yourself, “he can’t be that good.” Then when you first meet him, you think it may be an act. After you get to know him, you realize it’s not an act at all-he really is that sincere and that nice. He is kind to everyone he meets.
Such encomiums, of course, are a lot more important than statistics of performance, but nevertheless Stan Musial's Stats are nothing short of amazing. You can check them out by clicking here. His greatest stat is not listed on the charts: he married his high school sweetheart, Lillian Labash, 71 years ago and they're still living happily ever after.
Lord Acton, who died 18 years before Stan Musial was born, is credited with adding to his famous quote about absolute power corrupting absolutely, a line about Great men seldom being Good men. Would that he had lived to meet Stan Musial.