May 18, 2011

The Kindest Killer In History

Harmon Killebrew
June 29, 1936 - May 17, 2011
One of the greatest home run hitters of all time passed away yesterday at age 74.  Harmon Killebrew spent almost his entire career with the Washington Senators, and later the Minnesota Twins when the franchise moved west.  When he retired in 1975 after playing a single season for the Kansas City Royals, he was fifth all-time in career home runs (behind Hank Aaron, Babe Ruth, Willie Mays and Frank Robinson).  He was the 1969 American League MVP, a 13 time All-Star, and was a Class of 1984 inductee into the Hall of Fame.

In addition to being one of the all-time greats of the game, everyone who has any connection to Mr. Killebrew will tell you what a remarkably kind and considerate human being he was.  Among them are Phillies manager Charlie Manuel (pictured above with Mr. Killebrew), whose first career home run in the Major Leagues came when White Sox lefty Don Secrist intentionally walked Harmon to face Charlie.  When asked, Charlie said "If I told you all my memories of Killebrew, we'd be here until this time next year" before sharing a few stories about his time playing with the future Hall of Famer from 1969 to 1972.

Rest in peace, Killer, and thank you for being an example of all that is good in the game.