Robin Roberts was a master of the art of getting ahead of the hitter.Free passes were extremely rare when the gentlemanly hurler from Springfield, Illinois, was delivering to the dish.Quite the opposite; Roberts slid his fastball into the strike zone and by the best of hitters as if it were a runaway comet streaking across a sheet of ice.Robin Roberts won 286 games in his career, most of them for teams that were second division in record (save for the 1950 "Whiz Kids" Philadelphia Phillies), but always popular with the fans.Today, those cheers have turned into pleas for the days of yore – the great Robin Roberts can no longer take the hill.
Robin Roberts' death has shocked fans
USA Today reports that the Philadelphia Phillies have released a statement to the media, announcing that Robin Roberts died of natural causes at his home in Temple Terrace, FL.At 83 years of age death can happen to anyone, although there had been no signs of unusually ill health reported.In death, Roberts has left behind an extensive family including four sons, seven grandkids, a great-grandson and a brother.The loss of Robin Roberts so soon after the death of beloved Philadelphia broadcaster Harry Kalas in 2009 is a great blow to the Phillies extended family.
Robin Roberts was the main man for Philly from 1948 until 1961
Through 19 seasons in the sun (14 in Philadelphia), Robin Roberts took control of his games.This ensured that batters always had to pay attention when they faced him, but it also means that he was frequently in the strike zone and prone to the long ball.He surrendered 505 home runs in his career, more than any other Major League pitcher.Despite this, he was still one of the best pitchers the game has ever seen.Robin Roberts' place alongside Philadelphia Phillies greats Grover Cleveland Alexander and Steve Carlton is more than secure.Always a workhorse, Roberts' most outstanding season was 1952, when he led the NL with 28 victories, nearly becoming the first pitcher since Dizzy Dean to win 30.
Roberts was always a Phillies fan
His son Jim Roberts told Reuters that he never missed the Phillies when they were on television.The fact that the Phillies made it to the World Series each of the past two seasons (winning in 2008) was a great source of pride for the lifetime Whiz Kid.Like a kid on the diamond, the elder Robin Roberts would say things like "Did you see Jimmy (Rollins) make that play?" or wonder at the explosiveness of closer Brad Lidge's slider.And that wide-eyed young man had a pretty good slider himself.
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