Ok, this is a Chicago Cubs website and this is likely to be the only page not about the Cubs. As I was trying to remember my favorite moments in Cubs history, other sports moments came to mind as well.
The two moments are the Seattle Mariner's victory celebration in September/2001 soon after the attacks on 9/11 and Derek Redmond's chase for Gold in the 400 meter dash at the 1992 Barcelona Olympic Games.
I sort of adopted the M's as my 2nd favorite team to the Cubs whem many of my oldest baseball cards are from the first year the Mariner's first joined the Major leagues. As a kid, I remember wanting to collect all Seattle Mariner's baseball cards. I gave up on that goal long ago, but being a fan of the team stuck.
In 2001, the Mariner's had an incredible season setting a ML baseball record with 116 victories. Since the M's had such a large lead in their division, they were the first team to clinch a playoff berth on September 19, 2011 with a 4-0 victory over the Anaheim Angels. Since the victory came just 8 days after one of the most tragic days in American history, 9/11, the "celebration" that the Mariner's enjoyed is one that seemed most appropriate and will always make me proud to be a fan of the team.
Mark Mclemore, truly one of the team's inspirational leaders, led the whole team including players, managers, coaches and trainers alike around the base paths holding an American flag. The trot around the bases ended at home plate with an acknowledgement to the great Mariner's fans in Safeco Field. Mclemore was the perfect person to lead this as he really epitomized all of the qualities you would want in a baseball teammate. Not blessed with great talent, he was a pesky hitter that became a difficult guy to get out, he always hustled and he learned to play many, if not all, positions on the field throughout his ML career. This made him an invaluable member of the 2001 Mariner's.
Here is a You Tube clip of this moment in Seattle Mariner's history that I will not soon forget. Enjoy!!
Well, I saved the best for last and this one is not a Cubs or a baseball moment. It was 1992, the summer Olympics in Barcelona, Spain. Derek Redmond of Great Britain was competing in the 400 meter dash, but unfortunately he didn't win the race. Well, I should say he didn't win that particular 400 meter dash, but he certainly won the admiration of many sports fans (myself included) that day. Redmond tore a hamstring early in the race and you could see the agony in his face, whether the agony was due to the pain or knowing that his opportunity for Gold had passed is unknown. But to Redmond, losing a Gold medal or the pain was not as important as finishing the race. So Redmond proceeded to limp around the track, waving off Olympic officials trying to tend to his obvious injury. Suddenly, a man dressed in shorts and a white t-shirt, Derek's dad, Jim Redmond ran onto the track to help his son cross the finish line.
Perhaps this video won't mean as much to others as it does to me since I do remember watching the event live (on tv), but it truly epitomize's to me what the Olympic Spirit is and what all sports competitions should be about. Giving it all you have to complete the task, whether you win or lose.