There are few examples of players in the history of the game that you can namedrop and everyone simply nods and knows the exact player to which you refer.
Bill Buckner was once such player, but he sadly passed away on Monday after a lengthy battle with dementia.
No Billy, No!
The Red Sox appeared to have been ready to break the curse of the Big Bambino in 1980 when Billy Buckner got his moment of infamy. Mookie Wilson hit a weak grounder down the first base line in what should have been a routine play, but it went right through Buckner’s legs.
With it went the chances of the Red Sox winning the World Series. The Red Sox lost that game, then lost Game 7 to the Mets in yet another heartbreaker.
From that moment on, anyone dropping an easy ball was considered to have pulled a Buckner.
Even so, Boston fans came to love Buckner and his passing this weekend saddened the entire city.
In Tough Times
Teams that go through heartache like that often form a bond that will never be broken. Buckner and Wilson formed a friendship that both would cherish for the rest of their lives.
After Buckner passed, Wilson stated, “We had developed a friendship that last well over 30 years. I felt badly for some of the things he went through.”
“Bill was a great baseball player whose legacy should not be defined by one play.”
While everyone will always associate Buckner with that play, that is hardly the only thing people remember him for. That was quite evident in the emotional outpouring on social media within moments of his death being announced.
Fans and former players alike sent their sentiments and memories for all to read.
Rest in peace Bill, for you will be greatly missed.