Tonight’s Game Canceled Due to Death of Cards Pitcher

Tonight's game between the Cubs and Cardinals has been canceled due to the tragic death of STL RHP Josh Hancock in a traffic accident in St. Louis early this morning. He just turned 29 a couple of weeks ago, and worked three innings in yesterday's 8-1 Cubs victory. Hancock was reportedly traveling westbound on I-64 west of Compton Avenue at about 12:30 AM when his Ford Explorer SUV plowed into a tow truck parked on the side of the road. Hancock was pronounced dead at the scene. The tow truck driver told police he was assisting a stranded motorist, and was seated in his parked truck in the far left lane of the highway with the wrecker's emergency lights activated. He said he saw the SUV coming up behind him, but it did not slow down before slamming into his vehicle. The tow truck driver was not injured. Hancock played college ball at Auburn, and was selected by the Boston Red Sox in the 5th round of the 1998 June draft, making his MLB debut with BOS in 2002. The Red Sox traded him to the Phillies for 3B Jeremy Giambi during the MLB Winter Meetings in December 2002, and then Josh was dealt to CIN in a trade deadline deal where RHP Todd Jones went from CIN to PHI on July 30, 2004. Hancock started nine games for the Reds over the last two months (August-September) of '04, but spent most of the 2005 season on the 60-day DL (groin). Hancock was released by the Reds in February 2006 when he reported to Spring Training overweight and out of shape, but was subsequently signed by the Cardinals as a FA, becoming an important cog in the Redbirds '06 World Series Champion bullpen (3-3 with a 4.09 ERA and 1.21 WHIP in 62 games). Our prayers are with Josh's family and friends.
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Comments

Just awful... the rivalry takes a break today.

Phil - I've deleted my post underneath this one, and will just go with this announcement.

Again, my sympathies and best wishses are extended to the Cards friends and family.

Condolances go out to everyone associated with the Cardinals and fans. Rivalries aside, a sad day for Major League Baseball.

I'm sorry to hear this. :( :(

I guess it also means I need to figure out something else to do tonight. I was really looking forward to seeing the Cubs on ESPN. :(

That's freaky, we just saw him pitch yesterday. What a terrible day for baseball. Indeed, Rich, the rivalry can wait.

A sad, sad day. Condolences to the Hancock and Cardinal families. Just awful.

(A side note that I hesitate to even mention because it pales in comparison to the Hancock news, but Mark Cuban was on "Sunday Morning Shootout" today (a random Hollywood business show on AMC program that I have become addicted to) and in response to a general baseball question, he volunteered that he is "more than interested" in buying the Cubs. He called them "iconic" and an "institution.")

While horrible and sad, this is eerily strange. Let us not forget that Daryl Kyle died in the middle of a Cubs Cards series. Just bizarre.

It is hard to believe that this sort of thing can happen TWICE to a ballclub in just a few years. As little good will as I wish this organization on a daily basis, this is not the kind of thing that the Cards should have to deal with.

Well - as the events hit home that all of what we as fans and the players realize is that baseball is merely entertainment and truly means little in terms of life and death circumstances.

More irony is that the 3 players reaching their untimely deaths were pitchers.

Goodness!

Awful......

Thoughts go out to Josh's friends and family

On the same note, checking to see what the major sports news pages had about the incident.

Fox Sports and SI.com of course still have articles about the Yankees as the main headline. At least ESPN found some way to pull their Yankee articles off their main page. God I hate major news outlets.....

End Rant

The story unfolds in a very eery way.

The article says that the Cards were actually worried about Hancock a few days ago when he was late and they couldn't get in touch with him. They all immediately thought of Darryl Kile and panicked. Turns out, Hancock was fine-- he was just late.

But weird. A foreshadowing of his own death? That creeps me out a little bit.

And these circumstances seem pretty strange don't they? Apparently Hancock just plowed right into another vehicle.

In any case-- deep deep condolences for his family and for the Cardinals.

Just a terrible thing for the Cardinals. Condolences to everyone in the Cardinal family, this is a very tough time for them.

E-Man - I remember Kyle, but who was the 3rd pitcher?

:(

I assume the 3rd = Cory Lidle.

Terrible.

My condolences to the Hancock family and the Cardinals family and fans. I am by no means a Cards fan, but games are just games. What a tragic lost of a young man. We're losing too many young people needlessly.

"We’re losing too many young people needlessly."

Is this really the forum for that?

"Is this really the forum for that?"

Is this really the forum for that ?

A terrible auto accident is not on par with a lunatic going around shooting up college kids. Let's not pair the two.

We're losing too much relevance needlessly.

what everyone else has already said...

horrid...

where did virginia tech come up?

did i miss a deleted post?

we're losing youth needlessly all over...i can think of at least 1 of 2 current US conflicts that are killing people with little impact to most US citizens...we got a heroin resurgence in america and it seem almost everyone under the age of 20 is eatting prescription pills for kicks.

I betcha ESPN is pissed. Now they'll have to cover the NFL draft for another 4 hours.

hell, on a purely selfish point i hate a really nice evening game is now dead air. that said, yeah it'd be pretty much unreasonable to expect the cards to actually play today...especially those around the last time this happened.

i just hope if the cards "turn it around" this whole season doesnt turn into the "josh hancock season"...its so damn not cool that he's dead and his teammates are gonna want to play their asses out to honor him the best they can doing the job he no longer can do, but i dont wanna see it get all whored out.

Speaking of not cool, not sure if anyone cares/listened to/etc the pregame coverage yesterday on Fox. Mark Grace was talking about various baseball happenings and he started talking about the sandman and his not having a save yet this year. Mark Grace proceeded to say Rivera "has as many saves as a dead man".

Well, that was yesterday before all this transpired, but I still found it goofy and insensitive because of Lidle.

"…its so damn not cool that he’s dead and his teammates are gonna want to play their asses out."

Uh - this is a bit premature, CRUNCH.

People often times take a bit of time to grieve. Its not gonna be like turning a switch on here, CRUNCH.

However, the 2002 Cards did win 97 games and finished first, when they lost Kyle. However, honestly, they were a better all-around team.

on a somewhat lighter note, today is lee elia day.....

on an even lighter note, the Astros lost again, which means we're not in last place anymore.

Pulling that out of context a bit there, E-Man?

The important part of that was "...i dont wanna see it get all whored out." Guess you didn't get that far.

e-man...i was speaking on their will, not on their will to play asap.

the part of that i was trying to make...had 2 parts to that post, maybe could have made them clearer...was if they start winning i hope its handled as classy as kile's death and it doesnt become some media-hyped baseless "doing it for josh hancock" year-long love fest.

Ryan Langerhans traded from Braves to A's for a ptbnl, he was 3-44 so far this year.

http://msn.foxsports.com/mlb/story/6755862

Will all the A's outfielders getting injured (Kotsay, Milton, Swisher & Kielty, I thought they might have been a potential trading partner.

The A's also picked up injured (out for the yr) Cincy OF Chris Denorfia for two minor leaguers. That's somewhat of an odd deal to trade a 60 day DL player.

Jerome Williams on the DL for an ankle sprain...guess we won't see him next weekend.

with all the A's outfielders getting injured...

Rynox -- just to clarify... I meant what happened was awful, not that we can't hate the Cards for a day.

I didn't think you could trade a player if he was on the DL. Did I miss something?

And man-- Atlanta looks like they're not going to get very much for Langerhans (unless the list of possible PTBNL's is really amazing). That might explain why Hendry hasn't made a deal with the A's for Jones.

Very sad...

We had a moment of silence today before our home game vs New Britain Rock Cats.

Very weird considering Kile died during a Cubs/Cards series.

Humor fresh as today's headlines: brief Bartman reference on the Simpsons tonight.

Bart as little league shortstop drops what would have been the last out of the championship game. To make it up to him, they recreate the game to give him another chance to catch the popup. During a montage, Homer, complete with headphones and ball cap, leans from the stands and interferes.

Sigh.

I gotta admit that this Hancock tragedy has stuck with me all day. Not sure why it struck a chord...it might be because a death by an accident like this has no larger meaning or sense to it -- it's simply a sad, unlucky event. There are no large questions or lessons about what this means for society, or what we can learn from it, or anything like that. It's just a really sad thing, nothing more, nothing less.

That kind of simplicity -- purity, even -- makes it all the more difficult to process, since we like to find reasons and rationale and lessons and meaning when things like this happen. But there is none of that here. A good guy got into a car crash and died. I keep thinking of Josh's father. This kind of thing could happen to any of us -- or anyone that any of us loves -- at any time.

On second thought, maybe that fact is the lesson here. If a sliver of good can come out of something this horrible, maybe that's it. Josh Hancock could have been your dad, or your sister, or your son, or your coworker, or your buddy. And it's almost certain that someday, in some context, he will be.

I don't think you can really prepare for the pain of that kind of tragedy. You can, however, enjoy and even cherish your memories while you are in them, while you are making them, knowing that no matter how much time you spend with a loved one, there will be a Last Day that you spend with that person, and you won't know which day that is until it has already passed.

I've been chewing it over all day too, and sometimes I wondered if it was wrong that his life would have more importance than an unknown person in the same accident. But maybe it's not "importance" so much as "influence" - his death affected a whole nationwide community, and allowed all of us to think about our loved ones and acquaintances in exactly the way 433 described above.

crunch: "the part of that i was trying to make…had 2 parts to that post, maybe could have made them clearer…was if they start winning i hope its handled as classy as kile’s death and it doesnt become some media-hyped baseless “doing it for josh hancock” year-long love fest."

Oh. O.K. I understand this.

I know sometimes tragedies like these end up as almost a marketing campaign. It is a peculiar thing.

Props to the clubs having no problem accepting that inconveniencing 40000 fans, and millions of viewers, is the right thing to do. Sounds weird to say it, but I'm glad of it. "There are things bigger than this game we play."

"Josh Hancock could have been your dad, or your sister, or your son, or your coworker, or your buddy. And it’s almost certain that someday, in some context, he will be."

Indeed this is well put.

How many people die in traffic accidents daily?

We (the auto industry) try to insulate ourselves by building bigger and bigger types of transport (HUMMER) and air bags everywhere, but humans are fallible. In a sense, when we drive a car, anything can happen (and does)

Celebrity and sports heroes are put on pedestals in our society. When something happens to them, it is magnified exponentially.

I feel bad for the Hancock family, as I do for anyone I read about or see in the news that dies in a car accident. It will be interesting to see if the autopsy comes up with anything that hasn't been disclosed yet.

*Mark Grace proceeded to say Rivera “has as many saves as a dead man”.

Well, that was yesterday before all this transpired, but I still found it goofy and insensitive because of Lidle. *

Oh for God's sake, lighten up. I'm so tired of the "I'm offended" club, already.

People die all the time. Death is a part of life. Now we can't make any jokes or references to "death" in addition to everything else we can't say or do? At this rate you won't be able to say or do anything about anything [last count including fat people or those with "nappy" hair"] lest you get turned in by your neighbor to the freakin' PC stasi. America is turning into East Germany for f*ck's sake.

*We (the auto industry) try to insulate ourselves by building bigger and bigger types of transport (HUMMER) and air bags everywhere, but humans are fallible. In a sense, when we drive a car, anything can happen (and does)*

If a HUMMER hits you, you're probably dead. That said, does anyone know why this Cards pitcher ran into a parked car on the side of the highway? There are some things that you just can't make yourself safe enough to do, and that's one of them. You can put twelve airbags in a car but drive it off a cliff in a drunken stupor and you're still dead.

I still hate the freaking Cardinals. JH, RIP.

"If a HUMMER hits you, you’re probably dead."

Umm...yeah. Esp. in my 2004 Honda Accord.

"During a montage, Homer, complete with headphones and ball cap, leans from the stands and interferes."

As ROBG can attest, there are many transplanted "industry" Cub fans in Hollywood.

Watch the Dodgers-Cubs games. Last year (before the DLEE game) I felt it was nearly 50-50 mix. Or, maybe the Cubs fans actually get excited. But "no Wave".

Just got back from St. Louis. I was planning on going to the game tonight with friends. Obviously, it's a sad day for the Cardinal family, and baseball fans as a whole, and our thoughts are with them.

In a strange coincidence, I was in a taxi last night about 12:30, about half a mile from the accident occurred. The driver and myself smelled a strong odor of what seemed to be burning rubber, and two fire trucks passed us to enter the highway on-ramp. I have no doubt they were responding to the tow trucker's call after the Hancock accident.

It is bad that I completely missed that reference, E-Man? Just completely went over my head.

WES: which one is that?

The Homer/Bartman reference. Didn't even notice it.

Unrelated, cubs.com updated the probables for the Pirates series:

M: Hill v. Duke
T: Lilly v. Armas, Jr.
W: Marquis v. Snell

Lou says they probably won't call up Guzzy until 5/6 in the Washington finale.

http://chicago.cubs.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?...

no:

Oh for God’s sake, lighten up. I’m so tired of the “I’m offended” club, already.

Yeah, you're probably right. I'm probably making a big deal out of nothing. Still, if nothing else, it seems an odd choice of words.

If a HUMMER hits you, you’re probably dead.

Unrelated... lol... I just watched Borat tonight. Apparently you should be going at least 35 MPH to kill Gypsies with your Hummer.

Wes:

M: Hill v. Duke, T: Lilly v. Armas, Jr., W: Marquis v. Snell

It's been a while since I felt like the Cub's at least had a shot at winning every day. It's a good feeling.

Dunno about that, Ryno.

Duke kills us. 4-1 with a 1.40.

Ian Snell has been lights out this year also.

Of course, it's not like Marquis has been bad either.

It's Monday ... so OK to hate the Cardinals again?

J/K. It's been nice to read people's thoughts for the Cards family on this board after this tragedy. Some humanity on the Internet.

FWIW - Cubs are 4th in the NL in pitching. This is WITH Z and WADE Miller.

Also, currently, the Cubs are 7th in batting overall, and 3rd in team average.

But - probably last in hits w/RISP.

Take away from the Hancock news -- be sure to enjoy today as much as you can, because there are no guarantees about tomorrow.

Back to baseball ---

Cubs' powerr outage -- only one HR between them, but DLee leads the league in doubles and Soriano is tied for 5th.

Veal had a decent line last night, for a change:

6 ip, 3 h, 3 r, 3 er, 2 bb, 9 k, 1 hr, 8.86 era

From a pure baseball perspective (not to diminish the impact of the sad accident)...

The postponement is unfortunate timing for the Cubs. The Cards are reeling at home, their big guys aren't hitting, they don't have Carpenter, etc. This may not be the case when they meet again.

However, postponing the game was clearly the only option.

"Homer, complete with headphones and ball cap, leans from the stands and interferes"

As a geek I would have liked it even more if Homer didn't have a mitt when he interfered.

With the missed game, am I right thinking a fifth starter will not be needed until May 14 in NY?

Nothing has been mentioned yet, but it will be interesting to see if Hancock had alcohol or drugs in his system. Seems weird to me that he just crashed into the tow truck.

Reminds me of the Kile situation some, maybe he had a heart problem though like Kile. But also, a little known fact, Kile had drugs in his system and in the hotel room. I am not saying that is what killed Kile or even Hancock, but it will be interesting to see what toxicology reports say.

If he was drunk, or even had alcohol in his system, it will be tough to still feel bad for him.

Yes Manny - they did find pot in his room, but there was zero evidence pointing to this as the cause of his death. There was evidence that he had smoked pot, but probably weeks before:

Toxicology tests did show evidence of marijuana use, although it was probably indicative of drug use weeks before and did not contribute to Kile's death, Donoghue said.

Tests were negative on steroids, alcohol, cocaine and ephedrine, a substance commonly found in dietary supplements banned by some sports.

If he was drunk, or even had alcohol in his system, it will be tough to still feel bad for him.

Speak for yoursel, Manny. It's sad to see someone die way before their time regardless of the cause.

If he was drunk, or even had alcohol in his system, it will be tough to still feel bad for him.

Wow... I missed this the first time I read your comment.

Like vorare said, speak for yourself. A man died needlessly, and it is sad, regardless of whether he was drunk or not.

dave:
"Yes Manny - they did find pot in his room, but there was zero evidence pointing to this as the cause of his death."

I agree, that is why I said in my post: I am not saying that is what killed Kile

Vorare:
"Speak for yoursel, Manny."

I am.

"It’s sad to see someone die way before their time regardless of the cause."

Many people who believe in God would tell you this was his time.

I had the chances that manny would be the one to say something as tactless as that at approximately 92%.

I agree, that is why I said in my post: I am not saying that is what killed Kile

Then why would you even bring it up? How is it at all relevant to the discussion?

Wow, weird, I have comments disappearing.

Anyways, I didn't mean the Buc's series specifically. I was just saying it's nice to have a big league rotation that will at least give your guys a shot to win on a daily basis. Of course Duke & Snell are solid young pitchers.

Whether he was intoxicated, or fell asleep at the wheel, we should all be thankful no one else was injured or killed.

Tonight's another WCIU game. I'm going to find whoever is personally responsible for this and kick them in the junk.

jacos — April 30, 2007 @ 7:51 am
With the missed game, am I right thinking a fifth starter will not be needed until May 14 in NY?

===============================

JACOS: With yesterday's game being canceled/postponed, a 5th starter will not be needed on Tuesday at PIT after-all, and so Angel Guzman will be starting Tuesday for AAA Iowa.

Therefore, if the four starters (Zambrano, Hill, Lilly, and Marquis) get their normal four or five days rest between starts, the earliest a 5th starter would be needed is Saturday May 12th in PHI.

However, although the Cubs could wait until a week from Saturday to add a 5th starter to the rotation, Piniella says he wants the 5th starter (presumably Guzman) to be inserted between Hill and Lilly (breaking up the two lefty fly ball pitchers), beginning either next Sunday at Wrigley Field vs WSH, or Friday May 11th at PHI. And then whenever the 5th starter is added to the rotation, a position player will be dropped at that time.

Barry:
"Whether he was intoxicated, or fell asleep at the wheel, we should all be thankful no one else was injured or killed."

Very good point...

"But also, a little known fact, Kile had drugs in his system and in the hotel room."

ah c'mon...it was weed.

then again, that probably made him hungry enough to eat the body-trash food that killed him.

those food choices he made independant of the weed that may have made him eat more was his issue more than that, probably.

sucks...he had some young/aware kids (kile). my dad died early cuz of alcohol and eatting like crap. he wasnt fat and only slightly overweight...had a huge enlarged heart and partial blockage all over...41 years old.

heh..CIN's gonna retire dave "if i played for the yanks i might be in the HOF" concepcion's number.

crunch — April 30, 2007 @ 10:18 am
heh..CIN’s gonna retire dave “if i played for the yanks i might be in the HOF” concepcion’s number.

==========================

CRUNCH: Nobody's worn #13 for the Reds since Concepcion left CIN about 20 years ago, so the Reds probably figured since nobody wants to wear #13,they might as well just retire the number.

"There shouldn't be questions," Jeter said, his jaw set. "He's in no way responsible. He's putting the best guys on the field. I'm sure people aren't happy; we're not happy. But we've got five months (to go). It's common sense. He's not playing, that's the bottom line. You should never talk about his job. "It's unfair and it should stop."

hahahhahaha...the best bats money can buy...the worst pitching money can buy...and somehow its torre's fault.

sigh...

what did torre do besides insisting on playing doug manwich...and batting him 2nd once?

a 15K DOS program could run a team like that in the DL-league. if the 10-25m players assembled dont hit that day it sure as hell isnt cuz they're unfocused kids dreaming of prizes at chucky cheese after the game.

oops..the DH-league.

=p

given your talking NY Yankees and their pitching staff, it makes more sense to put them in the DL-league

Perhaps the Yankees would be interested in Wade Miller (if his "back spasms" are under control).

crunch:
"hahahhahaha…the best bats money can buy…the worst pitching money can buy…and somehow its torre’s fault."

While it is not all Torre's fault, he has made some very crazy moves lately. You can start with dropping AROD last year in the playoffs to #8 in the lineup. He used Mariano in the 8th against BOST in April. He has used 35 year old Pettitte twice in relief this year in between his starts.

But I do find it funny how they have the most runs scored in all of baseball, but yet are only 9-14 and in last place in their division. If that doesn't tell you that Pitching win, nothing does.

Re: 83

"If that doesn’t tell you that Pitching win, nothing does."

That's funny, I could swear from reading this board that OBP won games. i am so confused.

The Oakland A's have the second best ERA in the majors (behind only the Mets) yet are only 12-13.

If that doesn't tell you that the best combination of pitching and offense wins nothing will.

And the Phillies lead the league in OBP.

"And the Phillies lead the league in OBP."

And they are third is runs scored. Too bad their pitchers aren't as good as their hitter.

oh yeah, the pettite thing...

and hey, miluakee (15-9) are in 1st with 110 RS and 113 RA. woo...early returns. hehe. at least houston is in last insted of hou/stl/chc tie before yesterday's games. pitt's no longer in 2nd...CIN.

The "Pettite thing" actually made sense.

They needed an arm in the bullpen, so Pettite threw on his days where he would have had his side session anyway.

makes sense?

Maybe to you, but throwing a 35 year old even for an inning between off days IN APRIL is stupid, IMO. No reason for it.

Pitchers clearly pitch differently in game situations than a bullpen side session to work on things.

I think the Yanks will be fine, they always are....

although they're going to get spanked by the RSox if Beantown stays healthy.

Yanks in March/April starting from 2006 until 1996
13-10
10-14
12-11
21-6
17-10
14-12
15-8
14-7
17-6
14-13
13-10

21 -6. I assume that is 2003 when they won 101 games and went to the World Series. Why can't the Cubs do that just ONCE! ONE FREAKING TIME!!!!! WHY NOT?!?!?

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