This Date in Baseball History – July 4

Lou Gehrig's speech

On July 4, 1939, Lou Gehrig stepped onto a baseball diamond in Yankees garb for the final time, to say farewell.

Gehrig had been diagnosed with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS or Lou Gehrig’s Disease) in June and immediately retired from baseball, but made one final appearance at Yankee Stadium between games of a doubleheader on what the Yankees had deemed “Lou Gehrig Appreciation Day.” That day, he gave one of the greatest inspirational speeches in America’s young history.

Mick Gillispie told the story of the day during the sixth inning of Tennessee’s game with the Birmingham Barons on Friday.

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Categories: This Date in Baseball History


The Smokies Radio Network is the official radio network for the Chicago Cubs AA affiliate, the Tennessee Smokies. Daily broadcasts begin with the Pilot-Oscar Mayer pre-game show airing 15 minutes before every game. Following the game the broadcast concludes with the Edward Jones Investments post-game show. The Smokies Radio Network staff includes the Director of Broadcasting Mick Gillispie, Sr. Broadcast Assistant Greg Young, Broadcast Assistant Keith Brake and Broadcast Intern James Rowe.


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