I love baseball and my favorite player of all time is Lou Gehrig. Not just for the records he holds and what he did on the field, but for the type of person he was. That said, this is one of my favorite drawings I’ve done. It is not the most detailed or complicated, but the subject matter tells a wonderful story.
Sharing the field with one of the most legendary lineups of all time and the huge ego and personality of Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig was the silent, smiling performer with a legendary heart. He’s one of the only players of that era just as known for his accomplishments as his character.
The image above is from what is considered to be his farewell speech. The “Iron Horse,” who once played 2,130 consecutive games, took the field on July 4th, 1939 for Lou Gehrig Appreciation Day. Overcome with emotion and weakened by the disease that would soon take his life and later become synonymous with his name, he opened and closed with some of the most famous words in modern history:
“Fans, for the past two weeks you have been reading about the bad break I got. Yet today I consider myself the luckiest man on the face of this earth.”
…”So I close in saying that I might have been given a bad break, but I’ve got an awful lot to live for.”
Lou Gehrig died less than two years later.
To me, this image shows a man so grateful for the days in the sun he has been blessed with, yet wants so badly for more. It was a fitting farewell to an honorable man.
It is moments like these that make me love baseball and the emotion it creates.