Since hearing the news today that Sparky Anderson has been placed in a Hospice unit due to his late stage dementia, I have been thinking about his amazing career. As many of you know, I am in my mid 40s, and my first playoff memories came in '73 (I remember the Harrelson v. Rose tussle as if it were yesterday). Throughout the 70s, the Big Red Machine was full of players I either hated or grudgingly respected. Sparky, however, was another story. He appealed to this preteen Mets fan from Connecticut as somebody he'd like to have associated with his team. Some may, perhaps, say that he fell into his success, given the talent on his teams both in Cincinnati and Detroit, but there is no question that his players loved to play for him, and he was always an ambassador for baseball. I'm not a particularly religious person, but Mr. Anderson is in my thoughts and prayers.