I was in the middle of crafting a post about Richie T including the recent article from Matt Gelb of philly.com and words from The Voice Matt Provence last night when I received the sad (but hopefully happy) news that Rich had been traded to the Rays for 25 year old Kyle Hudson.
I say hopefully happy with the belief that Rich will be playing for the Rays and not just assigned to Durham. That would be disappointing and may cause inanimate objects to be destroyed. (no animals were hurt during the publication of this post)
At the beginning of this season Rich was 6th in AAA games played (439), 5th in AB (1569), 5th in Runs (238), 6th in Hits (425), 1st in 3B (24) and certainly first in SB (127) of which he holds 3 of the top 10 single season records including last years season leading 48. He will surely go down as the best and longest tenured player in IronPigs history.
Thing is and it was detailed in Matt Gelb’s article – with Richie T it wasn’t just about the player it was about the man – the family man – the teammate – the friend. What can you say about Richie T? Those that know are well aware of how Rich treated the fans, the kids and his friends and we can be thankful for the pleasure of meeting him.
“In the end, very few people will remember anything I have done as a baseball player. But hopefully they will remember what kind of person and teammate I am.”
One day when my grand kids ask who my favorite baseball player of all time is? My answer will be Rich Thompson, center-fielder for the Lehigh Valley IronPigs and the first player inducted into the IronPigs Hall of Fame!
Good Luck Rich! We’ll miss you buddy! Hit ‘em hard and run like the wind!
There is no joy in Pigville as the mighty Richie T has left the building…..