Brian over at 30-Year Old Cardboard is a great baseball fan. He writes an interesting blog, because he has a passion for the game and the players. Recently, Brian wrote a very poignant piece about Hall of Famer Gary Carter, who recently announced he was suffering from inoperable brain tumors. That piece can be found here.
Carter was always the player I didn't want to like, but did. He replaced Barry Foote (one of my childhood favorites) and earned my initial scorn. Then he played for the hated New York Mets and won a Series with them, while my Cubs watched from their homes. Finally he was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame, while one of my all-time favorites Ted Simmons barely got noticed on the ballot.
None of this is Carter's fault. I never disliked him, I just didn't want to like him. He was a great player and deserved all of the praise he got. The truth is I would have loved to have Carter play at Wrigley, instead of the dozens of catchers the Cubs trotted out during his career (including the aforementioned Foote).
So while I never really cheered for Carter during his career, I am cheering for him now. I am also joining Brian's crusade and sending a card to him for Carter. It's the least I can do and I encourage you to do the same.
Gary Carter and Brian-Summer 2010.