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Santo's # retired

Postby DieHardCubbie » Tue Sep 16, 2003 2:48 am

Cubs to retire Santo's No. 10
Banks, Williams only other numbers retired by team
By Carrie Muskat / MLB.com

Ron Santo: "I don't care if I get in the Hall of Fame anymore. This is my Hall of Fame." (AP)



CHICAGO -- Ron Santo wasn't elected into baseball's Hall of Fame but he will be remembered forever with the Chicago Cubs.
The Cubs announced Monday they will retire Santo's No. 10 in ceremonies on Sept. 28 in the regular season finale against the Pittsburgh Pirates.

"I don't care if I get in the Hall of Fame anymore," Santo said Monday. "This is my Hall of Fame, and I really mean it. I can't explain it but this is the ultimate."

Santo, 63, is the third player to be so honored by the Cubs, joining Ernie Banks, who wore No. 14, and Billy Williams, who wore No. 26. Both numbers fly on flags from the foul poles. Santo's No. 10 will be added to the left field foul pole.

"I've always in my heart hoped that before I died that they retired my number," Santo said. "There's nothing more important to me in my life than this happening. I'm a Cubbie. I'll always be a Cubbie. I was asked, 'Have they ever broke your heart?' All the years I've played, all the years I've broadcast, they've never broke my heart."

Maybe not but the emotional Santo doesn't hide his feelings for the team during his broadcasts as the color commentator for WGN radio. He played for the team from 1960-1973 and was with the White Sox in 1974. This is his 14th season with WGN Radio.

"It seems like I'm more popular now than I was when I was a player," Santo said. "Maybe all you have to do is lose a couple legs and be a Cub fan. That's what it's all about in Chicago."

He's not joking. Santo has had both legs amputated because of complications with diabetes. His prosthesis are designed to look like Cubs uniforms -- home on one leg, road on the other -- and they have his No. 10.

"When I get to the ballpark, it's therapy and I don't think about anything else," he said.

Diagnosed with diabetes in his teens, Santo is a member of the board of directors of the Juvenile Diabetes Foundation. Since he began his involvement with the JDF through his annual Ron Santo Walk for the Cure walk-a-thon, more than $54 million has been raised for the charity.

"I think my second career has been a fan's career and that's how it's been," Santo said. "When I first started [broadcasting], I was the worst but I was trying to be somebody that I wasn't. Then WGN said, 'Be yourself.' I became a fan. I fell in love with the team. I moan and I groan, I do a lot of stuff. I've got the best play-by-play guy in the game. I look so forward to coming to the ballpark and being with Pat [Hughes, play-by-play man] every day."

Hughes and Cubs marketing director John McDonough tease Santo constantly but he knew it was no joke when McDonough broke the news about his No. 10 gaining a permanent place in Cubs history.

"Very few players are as closely connected with a franchise as Ron Santo is with the Chicago Cubs," said Andy MacPhail, team president and CEO. "His extraordinary playing career, his rabid following as a broadcaster and his many charitable endeavors for the Chicagoland area -- where he has made his home for nearly 30 years -- makes his contributions to this franchise special and unique.

"The Cubs organization has been privileged to have been associated with someone of the spirit and tenacity that Ron brings to both the ballpark and to life," MacPhail said.

"I lost my breath," Santo said about being told the news. "I'm so overwhelmed. I can't tell you how much this means to me."

The former third baseman won five Rawlings Gold Glove awards during his 15-year Major League career. He was a nine-time National League All-Star selection, batting .277 during his career with 342 home runs and 1,331 RBIs.

And trivia buffs should note the last time No. 10 was worn was by interim manager Bruce Kimm last year. The last player? Outfielder Terrell Lowery from 1997-98.

"This is what it's all about -- to enjoy it," Santo said of the honor. "This coming at this time was so perfect. I never expected it -- although I can't say I never thought about it."


Congrats to Ronnie...and thanks for a great career.... ;-D
[b]Useless Trivia of the day[/b]

England's Worcester Canoe Club set the world record for paddling a hand-propelled bathtub. The 25 man team covered a distance of 55 miles, 425 yards in 24 hours on September 28 and 29, 1979.
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Postby Arlo » Tue Sep 16, 2003 7:25 am

Well deserved. Think Sandberg will be next?
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Postby DieHardCubbie » Thu Sep 18, 2003 3:16 am

Arlo wrote: Think Sandberg will be next?


I think that Sandberg (23) and Ferguson Jenkins (31)...both should be retired.... ;-D

I can think of one or two more that might deserve the honor...but those two definately deserve it.... :-)
[b]Useless Trivia of the day[/b]

England's Worcester Canoe Club set the world record for paddling a hand-propelled bathtub. The 25 man team covered a distance of 55 miles, 425 yards in 24 hours on September 28 and 29, 1979.
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Postby Arlo » Thu Sep 18, 2003 9:17 am

Who are you thinking of? Hack Wilson, maybe?
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Postby cwebb » Thu Sep 18, 2003 9:49 am

Why not take Sammy Sosa rightaway? :*)
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Postby EugeneStyles » Thu Sep 18, 2003 9:50 am

Sandberg hardly deserves to have his number retired. He was my second-favorite player (behind Jody Davis) growing up, and I played 2B in little-league because I wanted to be like him, but the truth is, the biggest numbers he ever had was his salary. He was only really a solid offensive producer for about 4 or 5 seasons, and although he was a great defensive player, I don't think that warrants putting him in the same class as Banks, Santo, and Williams. Maybe I'm just bitter that Sandberg never really did squat after he got that ridiculous contract at the end of his career (I forget how much it was, but I think it made him the highest-paid player in baseball at the time, or at least in the top 5).
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Postby DieHardCubbie » Sat Sep 20, 2003 2:53 am

Arlo wrote:Who are you thinking of? Hack Wilson, maybe?


I would add Hack Wilson as my next choice.... ;-D

and Eugene...I agree that Sandberg did not do much after his big contract...but I think what he did for the Cubbies before then....and his efforts for the Cubs since then have warrented him consideration in this discussion....considering all time 2B for the Cubs....Who is the first you think about (and ony one).....I think #23 should be among the few that fly above Wrigley.... :-)
[b]Useless Trivia of the day[/b]

England's Worcester Canoe Club set the world record for paddling a hand-propelled bathtub. The 25 man team covered a distance of 55 miles, 425 yards in 24 hours on September 28 and 29, 1979.
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Postby Arlo » Sat Sep 20, 2003 10:04 pm

DieHardCubbie wrote:I would add Hack Wilson as my next choice.... ;-D

But then Doug Glanville would have to find a new number... :-D
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Postby EugeneStyles » Mon Sep 22, 2003 9:41 am

I think they should still retire #10, but put "Salazar" above it instead of Santo. That'd be a good joke on Ronny. :-D
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Postby ironman » Fri Jan 02, 2004 11:45 pm

Sandberg? Jenkins? Bah! When are they gonna get that Jerome Walton flag up there? Or maybe Doug Dascenzo.
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