I was very sad to read that Darren Daulton has been diagnosed as having two brain tumors, and is scheduled to undergo surgery next week. Even though I’m a Mets fan, I’ve been a fan of “Dutch” since the days when he was an up-and-coming minor league catcher.
Growing up on Long Island, I’d never been to a minor league baseball game until I was older and able to make trips out of state on my own. Darren Daulton was the first player I saw in the minors to make a significant impact in the Majors. Being able to think “I saw him when…” was a new and exciting experience for me, and because of that he’s been one of “my guys” ever since.
Daulton had a 14-year career spent mostly with the Phillies, although he finished the 1997 season with the Marlins before retiring. He was an All-Star three times and won a Silver Slugger. In 1993, he lead the league with 109 RBI, only the 4th catcher to lead the NL in that category (the others were Roy Campanella, Johnny Bench and Gary Carter).
Darren played in the World Series in 1993 and 1997, and in 13 World Series games he batted .293 with 4 doubles, 2 homers and 6 RBI.
My thoughts and prayers are with Darren and his family.