Ron Santo 1940-2010

 

Chicago Cubs great Ron Santo died last night here in Arizona.

A native of Washington, Santo signed with the Cubs prior to the 1959 season, was brought up to the big leagues as a 20-year old in mid-season 1960 after only one full season in the minor leagues, was immediately installed at the hot corner (replacing Don Zimmer), and never looked back. He hit 277/362/464 with 342 HR over a 15 year career spanning 2243 games. He won five Gold Gloves at 3B (1964-68), and was a nine-time All-Star. He did all this while battling diabetes. He was traded to the White Sox (for Steve Stone and three others) after the 1974 season when the "Durocher Cubs" were dismantled, and spent his final MLB season on the South Side. But his heart always belonged to the Cubs. 

Santo joined WGN Radio as a Cubs broadcaster in 1990, and just recently completed his 21st year behind the mike. While his emotional style of broadcasting irritated some Cubs fans, there is no denying his sincerity. He lived and died with each Cub win and loss. 

Santo had battled numerous physical prioblems over the past few years, including cardiac by-pass surgery, bladder cancer, and complications from his diabetes that resulted in amputation of both legs. He also had to deal with the continual disappointment of not getting elected to the Hall of Fame.

Despite the medical problems and other disappointments in his life (not the least of which was the Cubs failing to get to the World Series), Ronnie always was upbeat and as physically active as he could be under the circumstances. 

I became a Cub fan in 1960 when I was six years old. So Ron Santo and I go back a long way.

Tags: 

Comments

One of the greatest Cubs players of all time. I always hoped that, in your lifetime, you'd either get to be enshrined in the players wing of Cooperstown or see the Cubs win the World Series. RIP.

He not only was one of the greatest Cubs of all time, he was the biggest Cubs fan ever. RIP

This is a sad day for Cub fans. One of my favorite Cubs.

RIP Ronnie. You are in the best "Hall of Fame" now.

RIP Ronnie. I know you are relieved of all the physical pain you have suffered in your life. You were a very strong man to put up a fight as long as you did to make millions of Cub fans smile.

God bless your soul.

RIP 10, vaya con Dios.

He is truly beloved. A hero on and off the field, a Cub who really tried to bring a pennant to Chicago, in his later years he was a fan just like us. And he made being a fan fun.

Rest in peace Ronnie. Listening to games will not be the same.

Ronnie can click his heels again. RIP #10. You were the best.

amen...

I became a Cub fan in 1960 when I was six years old. So Ron Santo and I go back a long way.
---
me too, when I was 8. We're like ducklings who imprinted on the ballclub that season with a rookie third baseman.

I didn't think it would affect me this much but Ron Santo's impact goes deep to the core of most Cub fans who've been along for the Santo ride. He will be missed.

AZP - we're the same age, you & i...feel like i've known ron santo all my life; all things considered [stats, medical circumstances, post-retirement role as an ambassador of the game]his exclusion from the HOF is a travesty to me; i think i hope he's not inducted posthumously though - that would deepen all of the past snubs...as my tcr bio notes, being there the weekend in '03 when the cubs clinched on saturday & #10 was retired on sunday was maybe my most memorable trip to wrigley...

He will be missed.

He weathered a lot of adversity in his life with cheerfulness and grace and did some great things.

too soon...

My saddest thought as a fan was that my 3 week old son Ryan won't get to hear Ronny call games.

Rest In Peace, Ronny. You are missed.

Thanks for this, Phil.

Recent comments

Subscribe to Recent comments
The first 600 characters of the last 16 comments, click "View" to see rest of comment.
  • Chapman shouldn't be reserved anymore on 40 man.

    chitownmvp01 46 min 35 sec ago view
  • Interesting split on Heyward according to ESPN. As a CF, his slash line .292/.363/.375/.738. At RF: .212/.204/.300/.604. 21/72 as a CF, 58/273 as a RF.

    He's also been better when batting 2nd, but he had a nice start in the 6 hole, but has slumped ever since. He was heating up before the All Star break, but is only hitting .108 in the 2nd half.

    chitownmvp01 54 min 34 sec ago view
  • When we played the Reds with Chapman, I always thought of it as an eight-inning game. So now other teams have eight innings to try to get a lead against the Cubs. Should be a challenge, assuming three or four Cubs ever start hitting again.

    I don't really try to get to know and like these players personally. I'm rooting for laundry, for the most part. Exceptions might be when a player makes trouble in the clubhouse or in the dugout. (Zambrano and Bradley come to mind. Also Papelbon.) But I don't think Chapman is one of those jerks.

    VirginiaPhil 4 hours 27 min ago view
  • Unfortunately, a pretty good summary. It looks like next year Heyward will be getting yet another batting stance adjustment.

    The recent good news has been Baez. I'm afraid about the next league adjustment on him, though, which is probably right around the corner.

    Bryant I don't worry about too much. Just not seeing the ball well right now. He'll turn it around. Russell's been good with men in scoring position all year and he's 22ish. He'll be fine but next year is likely to be his breakout year.

    Old and Blue 6 hours 30 min ago view
  • If Travis' back-to-back-to-back walks cost Hendricks the ERA title, that would really suck.

    billybucks 15 hours 33 min ago view
  • Edit: "A lifeless loss to a lousy Sox team."

    billybucks 16 hours 15 min ago view
  • This place is a real downer after a loss to the Sox.

    Charlie 16 hours 26 min ago view
  • I expect they will go 5-9 games above .500 the rest of the year. 96-98 wins will win the Division.

    They should have one more 2-3 week hot streak in them.

    However, several players are just "average" for the last month: Zobrist, Ross, Russell, Ceasar. Montero is terrible, plus he cannot throw anyone out. -WAR. Heyward is abysmal at the plate, but a plus in the OF. Still with RISP he has been terrible. KB has not been driving in runs as of late. But Apparently the team is still above average with RISP according to S Sahadev.

    The E-Man 16 hours 33 min ago view
  • I came to that realization tonight. I kept expecting them to play better, but now I realize they aren't going to. They are a .500 team now.
    - They have one reliable starting pitcher. Jake's magic is gone, and it doesn't look like it's coming back. Lester has been lousy recently. Lackey's ERA goes up every time he pitches.
    - Heyward has been dead weight all year. I can't remember a single series where he was a significant offensive contributor. Not one. Great defense, but but if he were hitting .270 with 10 HR and played average defense, the Cubs would be better off.

    billybucks 16 hours 36 min ago view
  • new rule...no one's allowed to throw k.bryant a changeup

    crunch 16 hours 48 min ago view
  • Team is .500 since early May and is playing like a .500 team. Lack of offense seems to be putting a lot of pressure on the pitchers...and they aren't handling it terribly well.

    .500 the rest of the way still may win the division though.

    blockhead25 16 hours 53 min ago view
  • ...i hate espn.

    nothing like settling into a cubs game to get a few minutes cutaway for an ortiz AB in the 6th inning of the det/bos game.

    oh, at least they're doing split screen now...i guess.

    crunch 17 hours 9 min ago view
  • I'm liking this rookie Nathan.

    CTSteve 17 hours 10 min ago view
  • Richard DFA'd. Meh...

    The E-Man 20 hours 1 min ago view
  • Throwbacks with fashionable cutouts would be a nice touch.

    Charlie 22 hours 33 min ago view
  • The next 2 games are nationally televised. I think we dominate tonight, hitting 3 HRs off Shields. Great night for KB to end HR drought facing HR prone pitcher in one of the most hitter friendly parks in the league.

    chitownmvp01 23 hours 6 min ago view