Vladimir Guerrero was feted with a retirement ceremony prior to the Angels - Mariners opening day contest. Standing in the infield, Vladdy signed a one-day contract with the Angels in order to retire from professional baseball wearing a Halo. His mother and father were on the field, Arte and his wife were there and Bill Stoneman came out of retirement (actually he has a seat in the GM suite at the stadium) to wave to the crowd an shake hands, getting credit for signing the superstar.
So far so good. Then he is asked to throw out the ceremonial first pitch.
The recipient? the only other Angels MVP, Don Baylor, who had just received a roaring reception upon being introduced to the crowd. MVP to MVP, what could go wrong?
Well Don crouched and lunged at a low inside pitch and was suddenly down, gimpy. Vlad went to his aid immediately and the 1979 AL MVP had to be helped off the field and headed out to a local hospital for tests. Conflicting reports initially cited an injured ankle or an injured leg. It was announced that Baylor had fractured his femur about two and a half hours after the injury had taken place. He will have surgery on Tuesday.
Baylor is a survivor,a s Tim Brown tweeted...
Baylor was diagnosed in '03 with Multiple Myeloma, a cancer that weakens the bones. Also afflicted Mel Stottlemyre, among many others.— Tim Brown (@TBrownYahoo) April 1, 2014
One thing is for sure - the injury took place on the very spot that Kendrys Morales landed awkwardly into a major ankle injury in 2010 celebrating a walk-off Grand Slam (against these very same M's, hmmm).
Get well Don.