Danny Thompson (baseball)

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For other people named Danny Thompson, see Daniel Thompson.
Danny Thompson
Born: February 1, 1947
Wichita, Kansas
Died: December 10, 1976(1976-12-10) (aged 29)
Rochester, Minnesota
Batted: Right Threw: Right
MLB debut
June 25, 1970 for the Minnesota Twins
Last MLB appearance
October 2, 1976 for the Texas Rangers
Career statistics
Batting average .248
Home Runs 15
Hits 550
Runs batted in 194

Danny Leon Thompson (February 1, 1947 – December 10, 1976) was a professional baseball player, a major league shortstop from 1970-76.

Born in Wichita, Kansas, Thompson grew up in tiny Capron, Oklahoma, and played college baseball at Oklahoma State, where he was an All-American. He broke into the majors with the Minnesota Twins in 1970. He played for the Twins until June 1976, when he was traded to the Texas Rangers in a multi-player deal.

Danny Thompson was diagnosed with leukemia before the 1973 season, but he continued his major league career for the next four seasons. He received the Hutch Award in Seattle following the 1974 season, and batted .270 in 1975, leading all American League shortstops.

Thompson appeared in 98 games in 1976, and went 1 for 3 in his final start for the Rangers on September 29, appropriately at shortstop in Minnesota's Metropolitan Stadium. In his final game on October 2, he was used as a pinch hitter. [1] He died less than ten weeks later, at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. He was just 29, leaving behind a wife and two young daughters.

During the 1977 season, members of the Texas Rangers wore a black armband with the No. 4 on their left uniform sleeve. Examples of this tribute can be seen in the 1978 Topps baseball card set.

An annual golf tournament honoring Thompson is held in late August in Sun Valley, Idaho. The Danny Thompson Memorial Golf Tournament, benefiting leukemia and cancer research, was launched in 1977 by the late hall of famer Harmon Killebrew, a former teammate with the Twins; and Ralph Harding, a former Idaho congressman. The tournament has donated over $8.6 million since its inception.

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