For a 10-year stretch (2002-2011), Roy Halladay was arguably the best pitcher in baseball. While Halladay entered pro baseball as a touted prospect, he struggled early in his career.
In his second season, he posted the worst earned run average (ERA) of any pitcher in baseball history. He was sent down to the minor leagues. It was in the minors that he retooled his approach and returned as a budding superstar.
The stories about Halladay’s intensity and preparation, even on off days, are legendary. He is one of the most beloved teammates baseball has seen in the 21st century. He set the example for star pitchers in the prime of their careers today.
Halladay died yesterday at age 40 in a plane crash. It’s rare to see an outpouring of support to this extent after an athlete’s premature demise. We can all benefit from reading some of the stories being written about Roy this week to better ourselves in the future.
Here is a good one to start from ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick.