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Thread: Former Phillies, Mets Reliever McGraw Dead at 59

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    That's all folks! Unklescott's Avatar
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    Former Phillies, Mets Reliever McGraw Dead at 59

    Former Phillies, Mets Reliever McGraw Dead at 59



    PHILADELPHIA (Jan. 5) -- Tug McGraw, the zany relief pitcher who coined the phrase "You Gotta Believe" with the New York Mets and later closed out the Philadelphia Phillies' only World Series championship, died Monday. He was 59.

    McGraw died of brain cancer in Nashville, Phillies spokesman Larry Shenk said. He had been battling the disease since March when he underwent surgery for a malignant tumor.

    McGraw participated in the closing ceremonies for Veterans Stadium, which will be demolished next month. During the program, he re-enacted his final pitch of the 1980 World Series, striking out Kansas City's Willie Wilson for the title.

    McGraw's illness came as a shock last spring. He was at Phillies' training camp in Clearwater, Fla., as a special instructor, looking fine and acting as funny as ever, but was suddenly hospitalized on March 12.

    "We lost a part of Mets history tonight," Mets owner Fred Wilpon said. "Tug was a battler on and off the field. I know he fought the disease with every ounce of energy he had. We'll all miss him dearly."

    A left-hander who threw a screwball, McGraw was a bit of screwball himself -- a fan favorite in New York, Philadelphia and throughout the majors.

    Once asked whether he preferred to play on a grass field or an artificial surface, he said, "I don't know. I never smoked any AstroTurf."


    01/05/04 20:59 EST
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    I'm surprised the article didn't mention that he is Tim McGraw's father.
    R.I.P. Tugger

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    C'mon Without Cmon Within QuinntheEskimo's Avatar
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    This hurts! My greatest baseball memory ever is of Tug Mcgraw striking out Willie Wilson to give the Phillies the World Series in 1980! In college, during our classic whiffleball tournements- i wish i now had a dollar every time i re-enacted that last strike out pitch from Tug- complete with slapping the glove hand on the thigh!! I still have 2 autographed pictures from those Phillie days- one of Larry Bowa in 1978, and one of Tug in 1980... Thanks for lifelong memories Tug!

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    LG.
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    not sports related, but Tug's son is country singer Tim McGraw. I'm surprised how young he was.
    Help fight cystic fibrosis or just learn more about it at the cystic fibrosis foundation website, www.cff.org and help give my little guy a better future.

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