So long, Sparky

Thursday, November 04 2010 @ 02:30 PM EDT

Contributed by: Mick Doherty

I grew up rooting for the Detroit Tigers and the Cincinnati Reds, who produced three of the greatest teams of my lifetime -- the 1975-76 Reds and the 1984 Tigers. What did those three teams share in common? A manager of course, in George  Lee "Sparky" Anderson.

The Main Spark, as he was known in his Big Red Machine days, passed on to  the next plane today.

The owner of 2,194 lifetime regular season wins (sixth all time) and those three tiitles (in five Fall Classic appearances, was the first man to pilot teams to titles in both the AL and NL. He was 76.

RIP, Sparky. A part of my childhood goes with you.