Go on ahead and try to say anything negative about Barry Larkin here in Cincinnati. I dare you. I double dog dare you to. You might not make it out of the room alive.
"I consider myself an amoeba man, I'll assume any shape to help the team. If the team needs someone to lead by example, I do that. If it needs someone to steal, I do that. If it needs someone to bunt or move a runner from second to third, I do that." -- Barry Larkin, during his 1995 MVP season
This has been my experience with Larkin, the Cincinnati Reds and the city that adores its beloved shortstop for 18 years. Larkin's entire career was spent with the Redlegs, from balling in Riverfront Stadium to the current-day entity that is Great American Ball Park, from his time with the Big Red Machine to joining up with his fellow Moeller High School alumnus Ken Griffey Jr., Lark did it all and saw it all.
What did he do? Well, Larkin is arguably the best shortstop of the 1990's, he won the Silver Slugger award (best hitter at his position) nine times, and three Gold Glove awards. Lark was a 12-time all-star and was selected as the 1995 National League Most Valuable Player.
The Larkin family is something like royalty here in Cincinnati, so it only seems fitting that one of them would make it to the highest plateau of his profession. Bob and Shirley Larkin wouldn't have it any other way. So peruse the photos below for more on the Queen City legend (courtesy of SI's Vault) and enjoy your pertinent reading material for Monday.
NY Mag: Better Know an Olympian: Usain Bolt
CBS Sports: Welker learns harsh lesson as Pats answer peace gesture with no contract
David Aldridge: Offseason's universal law: Superstars always rule the day
Smoking Section: Penn State’s Penalties: $60M Fine, Postseason Ban & Vacate 100+ Wins
Pasta Padre: Settlement Over Pricing of EA Sports Football Products Carries Major Ramifications
Los That Sports Blog: Adrien Broner fakes proposal after victory, asks girlfriend to brush his hair
FOX Deportes: Kobe Bryant Sees Pau Gasol As His Laker Teammate Until He’s Done Playing
Dirty Tackle: Will Ferrell and Zach Galifianakis meet Chelsea, make jokes
Wall Street Journal: Getting Called Out by Major League Baseball
Darren Rovell: Miami Heat Owner Says Team Will Likely Lose Money This Year
Day and a Dream: How Slim Thug’s “3 Kingz” Is Far Superior To Rick Ross’ “3 Kings”
He was one of my favorites as I grew up watching baseball... just shameful how the baseball HOF induction ceremony gets no love, because Mr. Larkin needs more air time.
Larkin is the man... If it wasn't for Ozzie he would have a lot more glove gloves.. Larkin is damn near the mayor of cincy lol
He could legitimately run for Mayor and win in a landslide. His entire family is damn near the stuff of legend. Impressive stuff.
Barry Larkin was no joke. Always one of my favorite players growing up.
And man, that Smoking Section post is great. Spencer Hall had a pretty awesome post this morning too:
"This needs to be repeated: for everyone suggesting that football was at the core of this, for everyone suggesting for an instant that something could have predicted this, and that a precedent could be set, you literally do not understand humanity or the rare horror of something truly evil."
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