July 02, 2010

The new manager of the Arizona Diamondbacks ...

Gibby has been rumored to be in the running before, but now, he's managing the D–backs.

Maybe Gibby will once again come home. 

When the rumor popped on Twitter last night that A.J. Hinch had been fired by the Diamondbacks, I hoped that Kirk Gibson would be hired to replace him. Gibby, a former Detroit Tiger, was my favorite player when I was growing up. He played the game hard, played the game right. His goal was to win the game. He could go 0–4, and if the Tigers (or Dodgers, Royals, Pirates) won, that was all right. He could get four hits, but if the team lost, he was (upset).

 Gibson, around 1985.

Kirk Harold Gibson arrived in Detroit in the late '70s. He was a Michigan State Spartan (that didn't mean much to me, I was seven) but he was the future of the franchise when I first started watching the Tigers. 
My Grandpa, good friends with Joe Falls, surprised me after Spring Training 1980. I had asked for Pat Underwood's autograph (yeah, I know ...) and on the other side of the ball, a young player had signed, "Ricky, Hang in their Tiger. Kirk Gibson." That's one of the coolest surprises — not to mention a great story. 

Thanks, Mr. Falls. 

In truth, I've met Gibby several times. I've talked to him a bit. I have many autographs on many different items. I think his book, Bottom of the Ninth, is a classic. He's still a bit of a hero to me. I've watched him "grow up" as strange as that sounds. I hope that this gig works out well for him. 

In Spring Training 2004, he was much more approachable and "nice," than I had seen him in the past. 

Good luck, Gibby. 

You're not a stalker, if it's photo day!

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