After announcing last week that he was beginning hospice care and no longer going to be fighting esophageal cancer, Hall of Famer Harmon Killebrew passed away today at the age of 74.
"Killer" was a legend among Minnesota fans, not only for his impressive Hall of Fame career, but also because of his work off the field long after his playing days had ended. Killebrew made his baseball debut at age 17 with the Washington Senators in 1954, and played there until the franchise moved to Minnesota in 1961. He stayed with the Twins until 1974, and moved to Kansas City for the 1975 season, after which he retired.
During his 22 year career, he played in over 2,400 games, hit a (steroid free) 573 homeruns, had over 1,500 RBI, and sits at number 15 on the all time walk list with 1,559. He played with the 1965 AL Champion Twins (who ended up losing the World Series in 7 amazing games against the Dodgers). At the time that he retired, he was sitting at number 5 on the all time homerun list, and is currently at number 11. He was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1984.
Killebrew was a beloved presence long after his career came to an end. He was still very active with making appearances throughout Twins Territory and raising money and awareness with various charities. He took the time to meet and speak with every fan who would wait in long lines to meet him.
The Twins will be wearing their throwback 1961 uniforms for every home game for the remainder of the season to honor Killebrew. A #3 jersey hangs in their dugout these days. He will not soon be forgotten.
Maybe now the Twins can turn their abysmal season around to honor his memory...
And enjoy this video below, where Harmon sneaks into an interview we were doing with Michael Cuddyer last summer. This is the Killer we will love and remember forever.