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Major League Baseball lost two legends over the weekend...

• Stan Musial, a revered gentleman of the game known as "Stan the Man," passed away at age 92. Musial was a remarkable figure of consistent achievement - with the St. Louis Cardinals for his entire career, he won seven batting championships, played on three World Championship teams and was named Most Valuable Player three times. He hit 475 home runs, including five in one double header. Musial also got 3,630 hits in his career - 1,815 at home and 1,815 on the road. He scored 1,949 runs and had 1,951 RBIs. He struck out fewer than 700 times in almost 11,000 at-bats ....and was never ejected from a game in 22 seasons.

Musial was elected to the Hall of Fame on the first ballot, and, as the New York Times writes, "went to the White House in February 2011 to receive the Medal of Freedom, the nation’s highest civilian award, from President Obama, who called him 'untarnished, a beloved pillar of the community, a gentleman you’d want your kids to emulate'."

The Times writes that Musial "had little of the glamour of the other stars of his era — from the World War II years to the early 1960s — when baseball was the undisputed king of sports. He did not have the mystique of Joe DiMaggio, the tempestuousness of Ted Williams, the electrifying presence of Willie Mays, the country-boy aura of Mickey Mantle ... He simply tattooed National League pitching."

On one of two statues of Musial outside Busch Stadium in St. Louis, there is the following inscription: “Here stands baseball’s perfect warrior. Here stands baseball’s perfect knight.”

• Earl Weaver, one of the most effective and influential managers in Major League Baseball history, passed away over the weekend while on a themed Caribbean cruise featuring a number of Baltimore Orioles stars. He was 82.

The Washington Post wrote about him this way:

"A hot-tempered bantam who screamed curses at umpires and sometimes at his own players, Earl Weaver made the Baltimore Orioles into a baseball powerhouse during his 17 years as manager.

"He was infamous for his explosive diatribes, which got him thrown out of almost 100 games, and for nervously smoking cigarettes throughout games, but no one could deny that the 'Earl of Baltimore' was one of the greatest managers in baseball history ... Known as the 'little genius,' Mr. Weaver had an inventive baseball mind and used every imprecation in his colorful vocabulary to inspire his players ... He was a crafty strategist who preached a simple formula for baseball success — good pitching, solid defense and three-run homers."

Weaver was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1996.
KC's View:
I have no memory of seeing Musial play, though obviously I've seen him on tape.

But I'll never forget one specific time when I saw Earl Weaver managing a game. It had to be in the mid-eighties, and I was in Cleveland working on a story. It was early April, and the Cleveland Indians were at home playing the Orioles. And it was cold. Really, really cold. And snowing. There were so few people in the stands that the vendors were going to us, one at a time, to ask if they could get us anything. (Mostly coffee and hot chocolate. Not much beer sold that night.)

And I remember in between innings, Weaver came out of the dugout, stood in the falling snow, and looked around, seemingly at each and every one of us in the stands. And then he looked up at the heavens, and threw up his hands in exasperation.

I remember that like it was yesterday.