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Cardinals ace Bob Gibson dies at 84

by Lynde Langdon
Posted 10/03/20, 03:57 pm

Hall of Fame pitcher Bob Gibson died of pancreatic cancer on Friday, exactly 52 years after he struck out a World Series record 17 batters in 1968’s Game 1 against Detroit. One of baseball’s most uncompromising competitors, he set a modern standard of excellence that season with a 1.12 ERA.

What kind of player was he? He glared at opposing batters, did not allow anyone to speak to him on days he pitched, scorned teammates and managers who visited the mound, and even refused to let his daughter win at tic-tac-toe. He moved so quickly that broadcaster Vin Scully joked that he pitched as if his car was double-parked. His aggression on the mound helped usher in a new era in baseball that saw the storied New York Yankees lose the 1964 World Series to Gibson and the St. Louis Cardinals. At the same time, he worked with teammates to create an atmosphere of racial tolerance and equality in the Cardinals clubhouse.

Dig deeper: Read my report in The Sift about the death last month of Lou Brock, another St. Louis baseball great who played with Gibson.

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Lynde Langdon

Lynde is a WORLD Digital's managing editor. She is a graduate of World Journalism Institute, the Missouri School of Journalism, and the University of Missouri-St. Louis. Lynde resides with her family in Wichita, Kansas. Follow Lynde on Twitter @lmlangdon.

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