Thursday, February 16, 2012

Baseball World Mourns Loss of Gary Carter

Hall of Fame Catcher Gary Carter, who had a brilliant nineteen year career for the New York Mets, Montreal Expos, San Francisco Giants, and Los Angeles Dodgers passed away Thursday afternoon at the age of 57. He had been battling several brain tumors and had been going through chemotherapy.

Gary Carter's website reported that at 4:10 P.M. today, Gary Carter had passed away after a battle against several brain tumors that lasted several months.

He is the first and only player in Baseball's Hall of Fame to dawn a Montreal Expos cap. But, he is perhaps remembered best for his time with the Mets. His career began his career in 1974 when he broke into the Majors with the Expos. He then played with them for the next ten years doing it all, winning three Silver-Slugger awards, three Gold Glove Awards and being named to the All-Star three times, while winning the All-Star MVP once. But in 1984, after finishing fifth in the NL East, Montreal traded Carter to the Mets at the end of the season.

Carter would play for the New York Mets for the next four years in what might have been his biggest four years of his career. Over his tenure, he was named to the All-Star game four times, won three Gold Gloves, and won the Roberto Clemente Award who "best exemplifies the game of baseball, sportsmanship, community involvement and the individual's contribution to this team." The award is voted on by fans and the media. Carter would join the 300 home run club in 1988, while playing for the Mets against the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field.

But, his performance in the 1986 post-season is what he might be remembered for. Despite slumping heading into the post-season, Carter turned it on in the late. He hit a walk-off single to win game five of the National League Championship Series and hit two home-runs over the Green Monster in Game four of the World Series. In game six, he tied the game in the 8th, then started the Mets 10th inning, two-out rally and scored the first of three runs.

Carter finished third in MVP voting that year. Two years later, after the 1988 season, he was released by the Mets. For the next two years, he would play for the San Francisco Giants followed by the Los Angeles Dodgers. Carter was claimed off waivers in 1992 by the Expos where he would finish his illustrious career.

Gary "The Kid" Carter left behind a great legacy. He is sixth all time in Home Runs by a catcher. He was a part of "Mike Piazza Night" in which the Mets celebrated Piazza for breaking that very same mark. Besides the Baseball Hall of Fame, Carter is also a member of the Canadian Hall of Fame, the Expos Hall of Fame and the Mets Hall of Fame. Carter requested to wear a Mets hat into the Hall of Fame but controversially the Hall denied his request and he went in as a member of the Montreal Expos. He always a hard worker and was always eager to play. He nickname kid, was given to him in his rookie year in spring training by the veterans of the Expos because he ran out all of his sprints and hit every ball out of the park. He will never be forgotten for all his contributions to and memories given to Baseball and their fans.

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