It was inevitable. But it doesn?t make it any less sad. Gary Carter, the Hall of Fame catcher who helped put the Montreal Expos on the map and helped the New York Mets win a World Series died today at the age of 57.
Carter had been battling brain cancer for the past nine months. While there were some ups and downs during his battle, his prognosis had turned grave of late. ?He made his last public appearance two weeks ago at a Palm Beach Atlantic University baseball game, greeting the players he would have coached this season if not for the state of his health.
But for as tragic as the past year has been for Carter and his fans, he will always be remembered as one of the greatest catchers who ever lived. He posted a career line of .262/.335/.439 while hitting 324 homers and driving in 1225 runs. He was a three time gold glove winner, but that probably underrates his defense, as being in the same league as Johnny Bench ? who was probably the best ever ? made many forget that Carter was fantastic himself.
He had his best years in Montreal, becoming the Expos? starting catcher at the age of 21 and leading them through their most productive era as a franchise. He then went on to New York and led the Mets through theirs, culminating in a 1986 World championship.
Good travels, Kid. ?Wherever they may take you.