Remembering No. 19, Tony Gwynn, with 19 of his best career highlights
Baseball lost one of its best when Tony Gwynn passed away on Monday morning at the age of 54.
Gwynn hit anything and everything. From the start of his career:
Until the end of it, finishing with eight batting titles, 15 All-Star Game appearances and 3,141 hits.
His ability to make contact on any pitch was truly remarkable. Despite averaging over 500 plate appearances a season, Gwynn never struck out more than 40 times. Against Greg Maddux, Gwynn hit .415/.476/.521 with zero strikeouts in 107 plate appearances.
Gwynn was a tireless worker who studied hitting the way an academic would, popularizing the use of video and leading to his nickname "Captain Video."
Gwynn also picked up seven Silver Slugger awards, even though he never topped 17 home runs in a season:
Not that he couldn't knock 'em out, though, as seen here during the 1998 World Series in which he hit .500/.529/.688:
Gwynn's career average of .338 is also the highest since Ted Williams retired in 1960, creating a unique bond between two of the greatest hitters of the last 75 years:
You can hear the two of them talk about hitting from the 1997 All-Star Game including Williams telling Gwynn, "I'm so glad that you're such a nice guy."
But Gwynn wasn't just an expert batter. He was a burner early in his career, hitting 85 triples and stealing 319 bases including a career-high 56 in 1987.
And he was no slouch with the leather, collecting five Gold Gloves:
The man called Mr. Padre was as widely known for his performance on the field as for his friendliness off of it, a smile forever upon his face:
After he retired, he was immortalized with induction into Cooperstown in 2007, receiving 98 of the vote.
Goodbye, Mr. Padre. We'll miss you.