"We Are Family", the hit song by Sister Sledge, rocked Three Rivers Stadium with that song after every World Series win in 1979, where the Pittsburgh Pirates overcame a future Hall of Fame Baltimore Orioles pitching staff.
Mike Easler was one of the important members of that family, as a rookie, who spent ten years in the minors before getting his chance. And, boy, did he ever make an impression that lasts to this day, 40 years later!
The Hitman runs numerous baseball and hitting clinics throughout the US, including The Vaughn Academy, founded by Mo Vaughn, in Boca Raton, Florida. It's a place where kids can work hard, and play free. https://vaughnsportsacademy.com/
The ripple effects of the passing of Tom Seaver has gone far and wide throughout the world of baseball, its players and fans. Bobby Grich, who should be in the Hall of Fame along with Tom Terrific, has some great stories to share about his two most memorable at bats against one of the best pitchers who will ever climb the mound.
At an Angels Zoom Press Conference on July 3, 2020, Mike Trout talked about playing the game he loves, while being concerned about possibly being exposed to Covid-19 and passing the potentially deadly virus to his pregnant wife, Jessica, and their first baby, who is due to cry Play Ball in August. New Angel Skipper Joe Madden also chats about how he is approaching the season, and do not call him over the hill!
Tom Gamboa has dedicated his life to his family and baseball. He knew from the first time he picked up a ball, bat and glove that he would be involved in the game so many people love for the rest of his life. The Los Angeles native taught or scouted baseball in most every nook and cranny of the United States and Puerto Rico. He even coached the Israeli National Baseball team in the 2017 World Baseball Classic! Gamboa is currently a bladder cancer survivor, living in Rancho Mirage, enjoying golf, grandkids and life.
Dennis and I have been friends and colleagues for more years than I care to count! Although Dennis is in his 90's, he's still sharp, witty and always ready to tell a story...especially if you're picking up the tab! His sports entrepreneurial career began with Al Davis. Dennis, Al and a few others wanted to put an AFL team in Anaheim, but the NFL merger put an end to that. So, they decided to create the American Basketball Association, ABA. That lead to the World Hockey Association, and many other sports leagues, including World Team Tennis, which is still thriving. Murph hasn't been inducted into any Halls of Fame, but should be. The only item that bared his name was the Roller Hockey International Championship Trophy, The Murphy Cup. The first Murphy Cup was left at the bottom of a hotel swimming pool after the Anaheim Bullfrogs won The Cup in 1993. After that, The Cup disappeared. It was eventually replaced, but if that Cup still exists, somewhere, oh, the stories it could tell!
I must apologize for the audio drop outs. We had some technical difficulties while recording this interview at Jim & Linda Tunney's house in Pebble Beach, CA. But, with the rare opportunity to share this unique chat with one of the most interesting men I've had the pleasure to talk to shouldn't be passed up. Although Dr. Tunney said he could only give me thirty minutes of his time, that June day in 2019, we talked on camera for just over two hours! So, you can bet there will be more chapters in upcoming Lunch With Legends podcasts! Thank you for listening, and thank you for your support! Lew
Don Baylor was one of the toughest guys on and off the baseball diamond, during his nineteen year Major League Career. Groove, as he was known when he was with the California Angels, started with the Baltimore Orioles in 1970, and ended with the Oakland A's in 1988.
Baylor won the American League Most Valuable Player award in 1979, with the Angels, mainly as their designated hitter, leading the Halos to their first American League West Division Championship, much to the delight of then owner, Gene Autry, with whom Baylor had a special relationship.
The Austin, Texas native went on to manage the Colorado Rockies and Chicago Cubs, but never got to manage his beloved Angels, even though he was on the coaching staff twice, including 2014, when his right femur fractured while kneeling down to catch the ceremonial Opening Day First Pitch from Vladimir Guerrero. Living with brittle bones caused by multiple myeloma most likely contributed to that fracture. Baylor passed away from complications of multiple myeloma on August 17, 2017 at age 68.
Multiple Myeloma is a terrible cancer that attacks the bone marrow, bone and blood. My wife, Diane, battled it for eight years, and died in 2012 at 59.
To find out more about multiple myeloma, contact either The Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation at www.themmrf.org or The International Myeloma Foundation at www.myeloma.org or the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society at www.lls.org