Farewell to Bobby Cox

Farewell to Bobby Cox

Written by Chad Potier
April 3, 2010

I have so many memories form my childhood: my first LP, my first .45, my first cassette tape, my first CD, but the one that really stands out, is when cable TV first came into my life. I am not saying I remember the day the cable guy came and installed it, but I remember having choices, more choices than I could have ever imagined. My favorite of those choices was TBS, The Superstation. Anybody who grew up in the 80's and 90's can tell you about coming home from school and watching Leave it to Beaver, The Brady Bunch, I Dream of Jeannie, and of course, The Flintstones.

What does this have to do with Bobby Cox, you may ask? Simple, during the spring and summer, my cartoon bliss was overtaken by Atlanta Braves' baseball. Growing up in southwest Louisiana, the Houston Astros were the closest MLB team, and I love the 'Stros, but it was hard to ignore the Braves. Dale Murphy, Bob Horner, Chris Chambliss, Phil Niekro, and Bobby Cox were names I heard everyday. Skip Caray's voice became as familiar as Milo Hamilton's. Seeing Leo Mazzone, rocking back and forth while sitting on the bench next to Cox, became an all to familiar sight.

The teams of the 80's were not that good, but boy did something happen in the 90's. When Cox returned in the 1990 season (replacing Russ Nixon mid-season) something magical happened. Tom Glavine, Steve Avery, and John Smoltz became one of the best pitching rotations EVER. Add Chipper Jones, Dave Justice, Ron Gant, and league MVP and batting champion Terry Pendleton and it was like the stars had aligned. From 1991–2005 the Braves won an unprecedented 14 consecutive division titles. This also began my disdain for them; as I said before, I am a Astros fan. Cox's Braves gave the 'Stros everything they had, every time they played; including the epic 18 inning battle on October 9, 2005, in game 4 of the NLDS at Minute Maid Park. (The 'Stros would go on to the World Series and be swept by the Chi-Sox.)

Cox has the longest current tenure in Major League Baseball, as well as the all-time record for ejections (151). He played with Mickey Mantle, in '68 and Thurman Munson, in '69. He is as much a part of baseball's landscape as the 7th inning stretch and, for this fan, will surely be missed. So thank you and farewell, Bobby; my memories of baseball will for ever be linked to you and the Braves. Now, maybe, the Astros can be contenders.

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