2021 is not shaping up to be much better than 2020.
Don Sutton ended his Hall of Fame playing career back in 1988, but his impact on the game of baseball went well beyond that. After playing for five different major league teams an accumulating 324 wins, a career 3.26 ERA, and 3,574 strikeouts, Sutton would go on to work on Braves broadcasts from 1989 all the way through the present (with a short interlude as the color commentator in the late 2000’s for the Nationals), although health issues had greatly diminished the amount he was on the radio in the last couple of seasons.
Along with Skip Caray and Pete Van Wieren, he was one of the faces of the Braves’ TV broadcasts in the 1990’s and early 2000’s and, alongside Jim Powell, his voice went hand in hand with Braves baseball on the Braves Radio Network.
...and the world lost him last night.
Saddened to share that my dad passed away in his sleep last night. He worked as hard as anyone I’ve ever known and he treated those he encountered with great respect...and he took me to work a lot. For all these things, I am very grateful. Rest In Peace. pic.twitter.com/cvlDRRdVXa— Daron Sutton (@lifeisgreatsut) January 19, 2021
Sutton had certainly dealt with his fair share of health issues as he got older. He had one of his kidneys removed in 2002 after being diagnosed with kidney cancer, he had a procedure to remove part of his lung in 2003, and he broke his leg which kept him off the airwaves in 2019. While there wasn’t any announcement out there that he was particularly sick, it was open knowledge that during the last couple of years, Sutton’s health was cause for concern.
His life is one worth celebrating and Braves country is lesser without him in it. Our thoughts go out to his friends and family and to Braves fans everywhere who will miss hearing him call Braves games on the radio. We will miss you and say hi to Skip, Pete, and Ernie for all of us.