Hall of Famer and Braves Legend Dies at 86
Baseball lost one of its greatest legends with the death of Hall of Famer and Braves legend Hank Aaron at age 86.
“We are absolutely devastated by the passing of our beloved Hank. He was a beacon for our organization first as a player, then with player development, and always with our community efforts. His incredible talent and resolve helped him achieve the highest accomplishments yet he never lost his humble nature,” Braves chairman Terry McGuirk said in a statement.
“Hank Aaron is near the top of everyone’s list of all-time great players. His monumental achievements as a player were surpassed only by his dignity and integrity as a person,” MLB commissioner Rob Manfred said.
“Hank symbolized the very best of our game, and his all-around excellence provided Americans and fans across the world with an example to which to aspire. His career demonstrates that a person who goes to work with humility every day can hammer his way into history–and find a way to shine like no other.” Read more
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Greatest in baseball history
Hank Aaron, one of the greatest players in baseball history who smashed Babe Ruth’s career home run record in defiance of threats to his life and who used his Hall of Fame baseball career as a platform to champion civil rights, died Jan. 22 at 86.
Jonathan Kerber, the Atlanta Braves’ communications manager, confirmed the death but did not provide additional details. Mr. Aaron became the 10th member of the National Baseball Hall of Fame to die since April, an unfathomable loss of star power, history and institutional knowledge of the game.
Throughout his 23-year career, spent mostly with the Braves in Milwaukee and then Atlanta, Mr. Aaron was admired as a model of steady excellence on the diamond, even though he lacked the swaggering charisma of Ruth or the exuberant flair of his contemporaries Willie Mays and Roberto Clemente. Read more
Henry Louis Aaron (February 5, 1934 – January 22, 2021), nicknamed “Hammer” or “Hammerin’ Hank”, was an American professional baseball right fielder who played 23 seasons in Major League Baseball (MLB), from 1954 through 1976. He spent 21 seasons with the Milwaukee/Atlanta Braves in the National League (NL) and two seasons with the Milwaukee Brewers in the American League (AL).
Aaron is regarded as one of the greatest baseball players of all time. His 755 career home runs broke the long-standing MLB record set by Babe Ruth and stood as the most for 33 years; Aaron still holds many other MLB batting records. He hit 24 or more home runs every year from 1955 through 1973, and is one of only two players to hit 30 or more home runs in a season at least fifteen times. In 1999, The Sporting News ranked Aaron fifth on its list of the “100 Greatest Baseball Players”. In 1982, he was inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame in his first year of eligibility.
Aaron was born and raised in and around Mobile, Alabama. Aaron had seven siblings, including Tommie Aaron, who played major-league baseball with him. He appeared briefly in the Negro American League and in minor league baseball before starting his major league career. By his final MLB season, Aaron was the last Negro league baseball player on a major league roster. During his time in the MLB, especially during his run for the hitting record, Aaron and his family endured extensive racist threats. Read more