After today’s (unsurprising) announcement that Chipper Jones will be inducted into the Braves Hall of Fame and have his number 10 retired, I just wanted to take a minute to thank him for having such a great, and more importantly clean, career. He was a role model for me as a child because I played third base in Little League. It also meant a lot to me that he stayed on the same team for the course of his entire career because that so rarely happens anymore. I appreciated that he was humble throughout the course of his career, which is a quality I try to have in my everyday life. I thought it was funny that he had been playing in the MLB for as long as I was alive, so that trivial fact made me like him a little bit more. Seeing him continually persevere through injuries gave me a lot of respect for him. But the most important thing to me was that Chipper did not cheat. Seeing all these players I grew up watching be caught for using steroids was very upsetting to me. I can’t even begin to express how grateful I am that my childhood hero did not let me down.
I will be sad that number 10 won’t be on the field for the first time in my life, but I will always have memories from his great career. I wish I could have seen him get another World Series ring as I was only three when they won, but at least I get to say I watched one of the best swith-hitters of all time play baseball. I wish him a very happy retirement and can’t wait to see his plaque in Cooperstown a few years down the road.