Streak Beat

September 06, 1995

What writers around the country are saying about Cal Ripken's streak:

'Pride of Baltimore'

"Cal Ripken Jr. showed up for work again last night and he now stands side by side with the ghost of Lou Gehrig. The Pride of Baltimore has tied the Pride of the Yankees by playing in 2,130 consecutive baseball games, and barring bad luck or an impulsive decision to play hooky, Ripken tonight will stand alone as professional sports' all-time Iron Man. . . .

"Sitting out tonight would be phony and contrived. It would be an insult to Gehrig and fly in the face of everything for which Ripken stands. Thus far, there's nothing artificial about either man's streak. For Ripken, tonight will be just another day at the office. Punch in at 4, punch out at midnight. That's the way it's been since May of 1982."

Dan Shaughnessy

Boston Globe

'Stability lives in baseball'

"Baseball should be thankful for Cal Ripken because he has become even more reliable than the sport he represents. . . .

"In his own understated way, Ripken is reminding us that the game still can be vibrant and friendly, when left alone. He has provided a sense of continuity even as baseball endures another fractured season.

"With the same poise he exhibits at his position, Ripken exemplifies a timeless work ethic to an industry that has forgotten to be fun. . . .

"As they say here in the city that loves him, if Ripken ever does miss a game, it will be because of sore hands from signing autographs, not from patting himself on the back. Baseball could use more like him. A year after the strike, Cal Ripken gives us the streak.

"Stability lives in baseball, if only for one night."

Bob Verdi

Chicago Tribune

'Ultimate attendance pin'

"During a baseball season in which there has been far too little to embrace, [tonight] we award the ultimate attendance pin to Baltimore's Energizer Bunny at shortstop. . . .

"Fortunately, the more we found out about Ripken, the better we like him. Not that anyone expected some murky skeleton to come rattling out of Cal's closet. But there was the indication that Ripken's natural shyness might turn this national celebration into a halting, awkward exercise and transform Ripken into a sullen sphinx. . . .

"Absurd that anyone should oppose Cal Ripken playing in 2,131 consecutive games. Anyone who cares a twit about baseball and the contribution Ripken makes to it should only wish he could play another 2,000."

Larry Guest

Orlando (Fla.) Sentinel

'Humble as he was heroic'

"For one sepia-colored night that was as much about the '30s as it was the '90s, a cup of coffee was a nickel again, a flag flew on every corner, and the most admired man in America was a blue-eyed baseball player as humble as he was heroic. . . .

"Displaying a flair for the dramatic uncommon to a career celebrated for its enduring excellence, the Orioles' shortstop hit a home run and two singles while matching a 56-year-old record that once seemed untouchable: Gehrig's 2,130 consecutive games."

Gordon Edes

Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel

'If I were Cal . . .'

"If I were Cal Ripken Jr., I'd wait a long time after breaking Lou Gehrig's record before I took a day off, just in case somebody miscounted."

Michael Ventre

Los Angeles Daily News

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