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Hall of Famer Joe Morgan, briefly a Phillie, passes away

Joe Morgan, one of the greatest second basemen in MLB history, passed away Sunday at the age of 77, per Bob Nightengale of USA Today and Joe Kay of The Associated Press.

Joe Morgan is one of the greatest second basemen ever. (John VanderHaagen/Wikimedia Commons)

A two-time National League MVP, Morgan is most synonymous with the “Big Red Machine” Cincinnati Reds, the team he spent eight seasons with and helped to win a two World Series titles.

That said, the 10-time All-Star was traded to the Phillies prior to the 1983 season, and slashed .230/.370/.403 in 404 regular season at-bats for “The Wheez Kids,” hitting in a lineup that also featured Pete Rose, Tony Perez, Garry Maddox, Gary Matthews Sr. and Mike Schmidt, all of whom were comfortably north of 30 years old.

In his age-39 season, Morgan helped the Phillies to reach the World Series, where they would fall to the Baltimore Orioles in five games.

Morgan’s time with the Phillies was short-lived, as he was released by the team following the 1983 season. He would sign with the Oakland Athletics, where he would spend his 22nd and final major league season.

To another generation, Morgan is remembered as the color commentator on ESPN‘s Sunday Night Baseball alongside the legendary Jon Miller, a role that he served in from 1990 to 2010.

Ironically, the Phillies traded a future great announcer to acquire Morgan before the 1983 season. Righty Mike Krukow was sent to the San Francisco Giants as part of the package to land Morgan. He would spend his final seven major league seasons with the Giants, and has become a legendary broadcaster for the team (and the MVP Baseball video games) in his own right.

Phillies Nation sends its condolences to the Morgan family during this time.


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