Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Kiiiirrrrrbbbbbyyyyy PUCKETT!!!!!

If I had to name 5 members of the Baseball Hall of Fame to save my life, I would die.

If you needed to know who won the World Series in 1988, 1989, or 1990, I would be the very last person in the whole world you should ask. THE LAST.

I can probably only name 2-3 players on this year's Twins team.

But I sure as hell know Kirby Puckett, Kent Hrbek, Gary Gaetti, Dan Gladden, Greg Gagne, et al. I was 9 when the Twins won the World Series in '87, 13 when they did it again in '91 (I thought Chuck Knoblauch was HOTT, and I almost cried when he left us for The Dreaded Yankees).

Kirby is a hero in this state. He led us to two World Series victories. He loved the game, and he taught a new generation of ball players to love it too. (Torii Hunter is one of the few Twins players I CAN name.) He was generous, and he stuck with Minnesota even when he could have made more money somewhere else.

His last 10 years were sad and hard, and now that he's gone there's a lot of debate about whether he deserved that or not. In the end, nobody really cares anymore. This is how Minnesota will remember him. So long, Puck. We'll miss you.

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