Friday, December 3, 2010

Ron Santo, Wish I Knew Ya

Ron Santo, who has battled Diabetes his whole life and more recently bladder cancer, has passed away today.

I wish I could say that I watched him, listened to him on the radio or at least just heard more about him growing up, but I can't.  All that I can really say is what the record shows and what other people have said about him.  Most notably that comes via the Hall of Fame debate, in which Santo has been a hot topic after not make it in over his 15 years on the ballot.  

Ron Santo played in an era where scoring was down and when his best skills (getting on base and playing defense) were either unrealized or under appreciated.    Hiss career was over by the time he was 34 and if he played a little longer while being effective I don't think there would be any doubt he could have made a Hall of Fame speech.  That doesn't mean that he needs that in order to be worthy, because as is, I think he's definitely deserving.  I don't know enough about Santo to accurately make a comparison but try to think of him as Adrian Beltre, if only Beltre walked a lot and had consistent 30 home run seasons.  Yea, that's pretty good.

Santo finished first in the Veterens Committee voting last year but didn't receive the required total to be accepted into the Hall of Fame.  Unfortunately it may take his death for people to finally  realize he has been deserving all along, I wish he could have lived to make it to Cooperstown.

A sad day for his friends, family, cubs fans and baseball.  

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