This year cannot end soon enough.
We're not even two weeks into October and three of the greatest baseball players of all-time have passed away: Bob Gibson on the 2nd, Whitey Ford on the 8th, and Joe Morgan this past Sunday. All told, we have lost six Hall Of Famers this year, with the death of Al Kaline in April, Tom Seaver in August, and Lou Brock in September.
Joe Morgan was regarded by many as the greatest second basemen to ever play the game. He had a 21 year playing career that began with the Houston Colt 45's in 1963 and ended with the Oakland Athletics in 1984. Morgan was a ten time All-Star who is best known as a member of the Cincinnati Reds Big Red Machine of the 1970's. He won back-to-back World Series Championships and National League MVP Awards in 1975 and '76. Following his retirement as an active player in 1984, he started working as a broadcaster. This second career lasted for over 25 years, which combined with his playing career equals nearly a half century of work in Major League Baseball. Morgan was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame on his first ballot in 1990.
Morgan's time in Philadelphia was brief, but memorable. The Phillies acquired him in a trade with the San Francisco Giants in the winter prior to the 1983 season. There, he reunited with Big Red Machine teammates Pete Rose and Tony Perez and helped lead the Phillies to the 1983 World Series.
Rest in peace, Mr. Morgan.