• Chair Of Broken Dreams

    Posted by on July 4th, 2013 · Comments (7)

    This really is one of the coolest things ever. Via Steve Politi -

    The inspiration for the most unique retirement gift in baseball history came on a routine road trip this spring.

    Ron Gardenhire, manager of the Minnesota Twins, was faced with an odd dilemma – figuring out how to honor a player who had tormented his franchise for nearly two decades – and his idea started as a question.

    “How about something with broken bats?” he asked a few team employees, before coming up with that perfect something. “Maybe a piece of furniture or something – like a rocking chair.”

    So the process began, and in case you had any doubts of just how respected Mariano Rivera is in baseball, the story of the “Chair of Broken Dreams” should put them to rest for good.

    It wasn’t enough for the Twins to hand Rivera an autographed jersey or something and send him on the way. They had to have something memorable. They had to have something perfect.

    They had to have the rocking chair. The team started to collect broken bats from current players, but when that didn’t seem like enough, it dug through its archives to find a few from former stars.

    Joe Mauer has a bat on the chair. So do Torii Hunter and the late Kirby Puckett. “I can’t tell you that Mariano broke them all himself,” said Dustin Morse, the team’s director of communications and a member of what the Twins called Team Rivera, “but he might have.”

    The bats were sent to a local furniture builder, and his progress was monitored closely. Mauer and first baseman Justin Morneau helped pick out a leather seat. No detail was overlooked, and that effort paid off at Target Field on Tuesday when Rivera laughed like an 8-year-old on Christmas morning when he saw it.

    “This,” Rivera said, “has been more than I expected.”

    Chair Broken Dreams

    Comments on Chair Of Broken Dreams

    1. redbug
      July 4th, 2013 | 2:06 pm

      I always think of Tom Kelly saying Mo should be illegal back in ’96. The Twins had him figured right away.

    2. MJ Recanati
      July 5th, 2013 | 9:34 am

      That is pretty effin’ awesome! Not only is it a classy tribute to a member of an opposing team but it’s a cool piece of furniture on its own.

      Kudos to the Twins.

    3. Ricketson
      July 5th, 2013 | 12:44 pm

      It’s a shame Rivera is retiring with so much left and not pitching for more years as he had planned; but he sees where this team is going for 2014 and beyond; too bad. I can’t blame him.

    4. JeremyM
      July 6th, 2013 | 8:14 am

      @ Ricketson:
      Mariano has talked about retiring for years and years.

    5. Raf
      July 6th, 2013 | 10:27 am

      redbug wrote:

      I always think of Tom Kelly saying Mo should be illegal back in ’96. The Twins had him figured right away.

      http://www.nytimes.com/1996/04/29/sports/baseball-rivera-completes-no-hitter-in-victory.html

      Would’ve been neat if Tom Kelly was among the group that presented that chair to Rivera.

    6. redbug
      July 6th, 2013 | 12:16 pm

      @ Raf:Would’ve been neat if Tom Kelly was among the group that presented that chair to Rivera

      I thought the same. He’s currently a Special Assistant to the General Manager for the Twins, so you’d think he was available.

    7. Ricketson
      July 12th, 2013 | 11:18 am

      MJ Recanati wrote:

      [B[ut it’s a cool piece of furniture on its own.

      Somehow I don’t think a man like Rivera, or one with a net worth that probably approaches $50 million or more, thinks of this gift as a “piece of furniture.”

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