R.A. Dickey returned to the United States on Tuesday after successfully reaching the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro last week.
Dickey’s former teammate and current Rockies right-hander Kevin Slowey and Mets bullpen catcher Dave Raccaniello also participated in the climb, which was part of an effort to raise money and awareness for the Bombay Teen Challenge, an organization dedicated to helping victims of sex trafficking in India.
You’ll recall that the Mets sent a letter to Dickey prior to the climb reminding him that they could void his contract in the event that he suffers an injury. Well, they quickly made amends with the knuckleballer once it was clear he was out of harm’s way. Dickey told David Waldstein of the New York Times that the group surpassed their goal of raising $100,000 with the help of a donation from Mets’ CEO Jeff Wilpon.
“He offered his congratulations and made a generous contribution,” Dickey said. “I understood their concerns, and I thought it was a great gesture on their part to help out in the end.”
Well done all around. While the immediate future doesn’t look very promising for the Mets, they are pretty darn fortunate to have someone like Dickey representing the organization.
SAN DIEGO — The Baseball Writers Association of America has named the late Boston Globe columnist, Nick Cafardo, the winner of the 2020 J.G. Taylor Spink Award. He will be honored with the award that is presented annually to a sportswriter “for meritorious contributions to baseball writing” during Hall of Fame inductions in Cooperstown next July. Cafardo died suddenly last February at the age of 62 while covering the Red Sox at spring training in Fort Myers.
Cafardo, who covered baseball in New England for 35 years, received 243 votes from the 427 ballots cast by BBWAA members with 10 or more consecutive years’ service. He becomes the 71st winner of the award since its inception in 1962. Jim Reeves, an award-winning columnist and baseball writer in a 40-year career with the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, received 108 votes. Patrick Reusse, who has covered the Twins for decades, got 76.
Cafardo worked at the Brockton Enterprise and the Quincy Patriot-Ledger before joining the Boston Globe as baseball columnist in 1989, where he inherited the Sunday notes column, founded by Peter Gammons. Cafardo covered more than 30 World Series, All-Star Games and Winter Meetings. He wrote four baseball books and won the Massachusetts Sportswriter of the Year Award in 2014 and the Boston Baseball Writers’ Dave O’Hara Award in 2017.
Cafardo becomes the first posthumous winner of the award since his Boston Globe colleague, Larry Whiteside, in 2008.