Joe Morgan loved baseball but also challenged its outdated practices The Hall of Famer championed fellow African Americans and stood for what was right

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I don’t remember a time I couldn’t pick up the phone and talk to Joe Morgan.

Yes, Joe was a Hall of Famer and for years we stood on opposite sides of the notepad. But from the moment I first met Joe, in 1982, my instincts were that I’d just encountered one of the most honest and decent people I would ever have the privilege of covering in baseball.

Joe Morgan, my friend, my brother, died Monday. My heart is broken as another person who taught me through actions how to be a good and honest person has died.

His death is yet another body blow as the horrid year claims so many I’ve covered and admired in baseball, such as Tom Seaver, Lou Brock, Bob Gibson, Al Kaline, Whitey Ford and now Joe.

Sizewise, most of his teammates may have towered above him, but Little Joe was a giant. Simply put, he was the best second baseman of all time. More important, though, he was a good man.

Joe was a fierce, larger-than-life advocate for a game that often did not deserve his passion and dedication to its betterment. He stood with pride when winning trophies and World Series, but stood out even more when championing what…


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