Cleat Geeks

14 Facts About Number 14

As we all know, Ernie Banks passed away at 83 years old on January 23rd, 2015. Even if you aren’t a Chicago native or a Chicago baseball fan, you know his name. He touched many lives and baseball was so much more than a game to him. Here are 14 facts you may not know about number 14, Mr. Cub.

  1. He had 11 siblings, 10 of them younger.
  2. As a child, Ernie wasn’t interested in baseball. He preferred swimming, basketball, and football.
  3. He lettered in basketball, football, and track in high school. His high school did not have a baseball team.
  4. He played fast pitch softball for a church team during the summer.
  5. In 1951, Ernie served in the U.S. Army during the Korean War.
  6. He played with the Harlem Globetrotters on a part time basis.
  7. Banks was the Chicago Cubs’ first African American player.
  8. He was a 14 time All-Star.
  9. He won the National League MVP two years in a row (1958, 1959)
  10. Ernie was voted in the National Baseball Hall Of Fame in 1977, which was his first year of eligibility. He received votes on 321 of 383 ballots.
  11. In 1982, he was the first player to have his number retired by the Cubs.
  12. He was employed as the corporate sales representative for the Cubs when his number was retired.
  13. In 1997, the Society for American Baseball Research listed him 27th on a list of the 100 greatest baseball players.
  14. He had asked Eddie Vedder to write a song about the Cubs as a birthday gift in 2008. The song is called “All The Way”. 


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