Addison Reed quit using chewing tobacco in wake of Tony Gwynn’s death
Major League Baseball lost one of not only the best players to ever play the game, but one of the best men to ever be involved with baseball on Monday when Mr. Padre, Tony Gwynn passed away.
Tony Gwynn himself firmly believed that the mouth cancer, that ultimately took his life, was caused by chewing smokeless tobacco during his playing days.
Gwynn would have been proud of Addison Reed, who in the wake of Gwynn’s death, took seven cans of chewing tobacco out of his locker and dumped them in the trash can.
Reed, who played for three seasons under Gwynn in college at San Diego State where Gwynn coached since 2002, reminisced what it was like to play for one of the most respected men in baseball:
“Just being in the room with him was kind of unreal,” Reed said. “That’s Tony Gwynn over there. I’m going to play for him? It was a no-brainer. I’m going here. He gave me a huge hug. That’s something I’ll always remember. He was there to help people succeed. He wanted the best for everybody. I don’t think there’s a clip on TV ever that he doesn’t have a smile on his face. That loud chuckle that he had. That’s something that I’ll never forget.”
Here’s to hoping that Reed isn’t the only one that drops the habit of chewing tobacco. I think that Mr. Gwynn would agree that there would be no better way to tribute his memory.
Phoenix Sports-Kings Lead Columnist Dylan Veltkamp @DylanVeltkampSK