Today in Philly Sports History: Tug McGraw Dies, 2004

Today in Philly Sports History: Tug McGraw Dies, 2004

It's one of the most famous and indelible images in Philly Sports history. Tug McGraw rejoicing on the mound after striking out Willie Wilson with a 1-2 fastball to clinch the deciding Game Six of the 1980 World Series. Tug was an integral part of that '80 championship season, finishing with a 5-4 record, a 1.46 ERA and 20 saves, good for fifth place in the year's Cy Young voting. He pitched ten seasons in Philadelphia in all, finishing his tenure with 94 saves and a 3.10 ERA.

Tug was a beloved member of the Phillies family, and a much-appreciated figure nationwide for his weird media comments and general irreverence (once noting that he "never smoked AstroTurf" when asked for his preference between the artificial product and real grass). In 2003, however, Tug was given weeks to live after being diagnosed with a brain tumor. He held on for many months--long enough to attend the closing ceremonies at Veterans' Stadium--before eventually succumbing on January 5th, 2004.

Tug's legacy lives on through his accomplishments with the Phillies in that historic season, and also for his charitable work--The Tug McGraw Foundation was founded in 2003, to help out children and adults with brain tumors. In the 2008 World Series, country star Tim McGraw came out to dust some of Dad's ashes on the Citizens Bank Park mound before game three--a moment that was confusing to us who had never made the connection between the two of them before, but one that was fairly touching nonetheless.

Union emotional after Maurice Edu's season-ending injury

Union emotional after Maurice Edu's season-ending injury

CHESTER, Pa. — On the eve of his comeback after missing nearly 13 months with a left tibia stress fracture and other related injuries, Union midfielder Maurice Edu fractured his left fibula on Saturday, keeping him out for the 2016 playoffs and beyond.

“I was trying to take the shot on goal and my foot got stuck in the turf,” Edu said Sunday, in his blue Union-issued suit and supported by crutches. “My ankle rolled and twisted and it kind of snapped a little bit. I heard it crack, and a lot of pain from there. I got a scan afterward, and there was a break.”

There's no timetable his return.

Edu, 30, has spent over a calendar year fighting various injuries that have kept him out of game action. His trouble began on Sept. 30, 2015, when he played through the U.S. Open Cup final with a partially torn groin and sports hernia. It was during Edu’s recovery from those injuries that he developed a stress fracture.

"A little bit frustration. A lot of frustration, to be honest," he said. "But all I can do now is get back to work, focus on the positives and make sure that my situation isn’t a distraction from the team."

Edu’s teammates were equally devastated by the news. Edu, the Union captain when healthy, is popular and well-respected in the locker room.

"I feel so bad for him," said Alejandro Bedoya, who wore a dedication to Edu under his jersey on Sunday. "He’s one of my good friends, so I was looking forward to playing alongside him. I know how hard he’s worked to get back, and to see him go out like that, it’s heartbreaking. I’m sad for his loss and I hope he stays strong."

Edu, who has been with the Union since 2014, returned to training in July and played three conditioning appearances with the Union’s USL team, Bethlehem Steel FC. He was on the bench for the Union’s last three games and was set to make his first appearance in over a year against the New York Red Bulls on Sunday, a game the Union eventually lost, 2-0 (see game story).

"We’re gutted for Mo," Union manager Jim Curtin said. "He was slated to start today. It’s real upsetting because he’s worked so hard to get back on the field. It’s been a tough 2016 for him, but I know he’ll come back stronger."

While he was visibly shaken by recent injury, Edu is driven to return.

"What happened, happened," Edu said. "I have no control over that. The only thing I do have control over is my next steps from here, how I prepare myself mentally and emotionally and how I continue to support this group."

Watch: Malcolm Jenkins saves Jon Dorenbos, who can't work his magic with bow tie

Watch: Malcolm Jenkins saves Jon Dorenbos, who can't work his magic with bow tie

The magician himself needed help on this one.

His bow tie.

Hey, this is what teammates are for, right?

On Monday night, Eagles longsnapper and NBC's America's Got Talent star Jon Dorenbos emceed safety Malcolm Jenkins' third annual Blitz, Bow Ties and Bourbon charity event, which raises money for Philadelphia's youth and underserved communities.

Dorenbos, quite the wizard with his hands and card tricks, couldn't solve the bow tie.

“I had no clue,” Dorenbos said in an interview with CSN's John Clark. "In fact, this is the first bow tie I’ve ever worn.”

Jenkins had his back. Watch the Eagles' leader go to work and save Dorenbos in the video above.