MLB SPORTS: One small city with two superstars5: 04 AM UTC
Mulder and Scully should be contacted by phone to check out Donora in Pennsylvania. The small town with a current population of fewer than 5,000 residents has somehow produced two of the greatest Major Leaguers in baseball history: Stan Musial and Ken Griffey Jr.
Stranger still, they were both born the same day. Musial was born in Nov. 21, 1920 while Junior was born exactly 49 years later. Assuming that the city of Donora has a Hall of Fame player every 49 year, scouts can start looking at the elementary schools and youth leagues: There is a Donoran star out there.
The outstanding careers of Griffey and Musial only add to the belief that there was something in the water. Stan the Man was a three-time MVP, seven-time batting champion and 24-time All-Star. Even after missing the 1945 season because of military service, he returned to hit an absurd .365/.434/. 587 led the league in doubles and triples with 50, while leading with 20..
The most striking thing about Musial’s career is not his batting average or home runs. 331 batting percentage or 475 runs scored, but his universal love was what made him so beloved. Ty Cobb, the most surreal man to ever walk on a baseball field, had this to say about the outfielder.
“No one has ever been a perfect player of the ball.” Stan Musial is however the closest to perfect in the game ….. He is just as passionate when his club is playing away as when they are just a run behind.
He was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2011,. It’s almost like being named the MVP of baseball.
Musial was not content with that. Musial was also an amazing harmonica player. Blues Traveler, take that!
Musial did not forget his hometown. Stan Musial brought dozens of autographed baseballs with him to his mother every time he played for the Cardinals against the Pirates.
Brian Charlton, curator of the Donora Historical Society, and Smog Museum said, “I believe that per capita there are more Stan Musial autographed MLBs in Donora than anywhere in the world.”
Ken Griffey Jr. Griffey Jr. was the most beloved player of a whole generation of fans. He was also a very skilled musician. Although “skilled”, may not be the right word, Griffey is at least trying to do it.
Griffey made up for his lack of on-field flow by playing a great game on the field. Junior was limited by injuries, but he finished the season with 630 runs, which is the seventh-most all-time. He won an MVP award, led the league in home runs four more times, hit 40 home runs in seven years, went to 13 All-Star Games, and won 10 Gold Gloves.
These are numbers on a page. Highlights can touch your heart like a spreadsheet cannot.
Then there was Griffey’s time with his father. This father-son moment is rare outside of the films “Back to the Future”.
Perhaps even more outrageous? Philadelphia is home to only one Hall of Famer, Roy Campanella. Donora is home to two Hall of Famer’s. The same goes for Pittsburgh (Bobby Wallace). If you are a Pennsylvania parent and want your child to be a great baseball player, then you should consider Pennsylvania. Perhaps it is time to move to Donora.
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