Traded to the Angels

Don+Zimmer+World+Series+Tampa+Bay+Rays+v+Philadelphia+FsQQrU35K_lxGodspeed, Don Zimmer.  We lost a good one, sports fans.

For a few seasons in the minors, Zimmer and Richie Ashburn shared hotel rooms on the road.  Ashburn went on to a splendid major league career mostly with the Phillies, and served for decades as their best commentator ever.  Zim’s career was marred by severe beanings — one requiring physicians to drill holes in his head to relieve pressure — but he became a popular manager and coach, as well as a great baseball personality.

Zimmer and Ashburn stayed close.  Invariably, whenever the camera would settle on Zimmer stewing in the dugout, Ashburn  would mention their days as minor league roommates, and ask, “How would you like to wake up and see THAT every morning?”

We miss you already, Zim.

This entry was posted in People Who Died, Died, Playing With Balls. Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Traded to the Angels

  1. cap peterson says:

    Zimmer was the best and bragged he never collected a paycheck outside of baseball. Wonder if Pedro Martinez goes to the funeral?

    • Lu Senz says:

      Good question, Cap, especially for a guy who died in 1980. My guess is No, but if he does, he’ll keep his distance from the coffin.

      Maybe he never got another paycheck, but Zim made some money on the horses. He lost some money on the horses, too.

      He always gave me a hard time about going into the locker room, telling me “You just want to see a lotta big dicks and bare asses.” But he never stopped me, it was all an act. Once I told him that if I wanted to see big dicks and asses, I’d have become a political reporter. He liked that.

      What a character. A big chunk of history has passed.

      • Constance Turmohel says:

        Holy Proust Tastykakes, what a flood of memories

        Popeye Zimmer’s playing ball with Kirby Puckett and Sparky Anderson

        Anderson didn’t have much of a bat but once stood in the way of an inside pitch

        just to get on base as a hit batter (late 50s @ Shibe w/ Ashburn Phils)

        Rest in peace, Mr. Zimmer


        Ya cracked me up with the political dicks/asses remark but
        don’t forget Richie “Headlight” Allen.



      • Lu Senz says:

        CT: Some of us never quite believed that headlight story. There was good reason to believe Richie Allen messed himself up in a fight, probably in a bar, then tried to cover his (gorgeous) butt by smashing the headlight afterwards. Phillies management circled the wagons and that ended that. Allen never reached his full potential, one of the many players whose work ethic and discipline didn’t measure up to his amazing talent.

      • cap peterson says:

        good stuff Lu!

  2. Borkon says:

    Another link to the past broken. Poor guy dies before seeing his Cubbies win a WS again. Then again, he’d probably have to live another century to see that anyway.

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