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Sparky Anderson is seriously ill

Nov 3, 2010, 8:18 AM EDT

Sparky Anderson

Tom Gage of the Detroit News tweets what is easily the saddest news I’ve heard in a while: Former Reds and Tigers manager Sparky Anderson is seriously ill, and is in hospice care. According to his  family he’s suffering from “complications resulting from dementia.” Anderson is 76, though that gray hair always made him seem like he was much older.  Hard to get your brain around the fact that he was only 36 when he led the Reds to the 1970 pennant and was only 45 when he took over the Tigers.

One of my favorite things about Sparky Anderson was how crazy he was in overstating the merits of young players.  Kirk Gibson was the next Mickey Mantle. Mike Laga would make you forget every power hitter who ever lived.  Here’s hoping that the reports of his condition are the equivalent of Mike Laga, and things aren’t as dire as they sound.

  1. Jason @ IIATMS - Nov 3, 2010 at 8:30 AM

    Here’s to hoping his poor health was overestimated. Get well soon, Sparky!

    Guys called Sparky aren’t supposed to get sick, ever.

  2. willmose - Nov 3, 2010 at 8:46 AM

    My prayers are with Sparky and his family, very sad, indeed.

  3. thelucasjj - Nov 3, 2010 at 10:05 AM

    This is sad to hear. He is one of the first managers I really remember knowing. I was to young to see his glory days, but when i started collecting cards as a little kid at the end of the 80’s, I remember liking him for his name and appearance. I wish him and his family well.

  4. Lukehart80 - Nov 3, 2010 at 10:24 AM

    Sparky’s was the first autograph I ever got, before a spring training game between the Tigers and Twins in Florida; I must have been 6 or 7 years old. He was sitting in a chair underneath a palm tree, a crowd of people around him. I had no idea who Sparky Anderson was, but he was both patient and friendly with the crowd, and I became a big fan of his that afternoon.

    This is sad news…

  5. yankees1996 - Nov 3, 2010 at 11:48 AM

    Sparky Anderson classy guy, great manager. My prayers go out to him and his family at this difficult time.

  6. pisano - Nov 4, 2010 at 12:35 AM

    Sorry to hear it , Sparky’s a great manager and a credit to baseball . A class guy all the way . God Bless him .

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