Boy, it was weird to type out that title. It's hard for me to believe, but Ernie Banks turns 80 years old today. But it's a young 80....I'm sure Ernie would still like to play two.
This is Ernie at Wrigley Field last week, as the state of Illinois introduced specialized Cubs license plates. He's looking pretty good for an eighty-year-old.
Here is a 22 year old Ernie. I wonder if he had any idea how the next 58 years would turn out...with him becoming the most popular player in Cubs history?
In honor of this special day, today I present "The Ernie Banks Story." This booklet was an insert from the 1970 set. There were 24 booklets, with one story for a player from each of the 24 teams. Ernie's is #14, which was also his uniform number. It was just by coincidence, since the books were numbered in alphabetical order, 12 American League teams first, then the National League teams. Chicago follows Atlanta, which was number 13 (Orlando Cepeda). It also worked out for Willie Mays, with San Francisco, the last team alphabetically, giving him book number 24, his uniform number too.
Click on the pictures to get a larger, more readable view.
Happy Birthday Ernie!!!