Good Bye, Ian Kinsler; Godspeed and Best Wishes

In baseball, there have always been fans of the “old school.” They change from generation to generation. Sports bars are filled with the signs and legacies of the old school favorites. There have been many arguments over whether Sandy Koufax could have handled Lou Gehrig or how far a modern hitter could hit a baseball back then.

For this old school fan, one type of player stands out and that is one who comes to play every day, gets his uniform dirty almost daily, and consistently does his job sometimes with flair but more often with a nonchalant tip of his hat to the fans as he goes back to the dugout. Needless to say, this old school fan will miss Ian Kinsler. In modern sports, we are used to seeing an athlete do an imitation of a two year old doing the pee pee dance after he hits a home run or scores a touchdown or doing a gorilla stance after making a routine defensive play. Ian did neither. He would round the bases, accept the handshakes of his teammates, and go sit down and get ready for what was to come next. His attitude seemed to say that he had done it before and expected to do it again. He might make an error on a popup, but he seldom missed on a critical double play chance. Then he would just trot to the dugout and get ready to bat.

I have never met Ian, but I have never heard of an incident about him that was disrespectful or out of line. If I had the opportunity, I would invite him and his family into my home and feel confident that he would be a gracious guest. He has been a regular guest in my house through the season on television and I feel proud to have known him that way.

I know that in all sports, youth must be served; but that means that youth is unproven potential. A reliable old school player is known and usually delivers what is needed. Sports are also a business and trades are necessary. But keeping the paying customers happy is also part of business. Losing a fan favorite is a high price to pay for potential.

I am sorry to see Ian go but I expect that he will find a home in Detroit. He has too much class to deliver anything less than his best. Personally, I will miss you Ian and will still follow your career closely. Best wishes and Godspeed to you and your family.

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