Darren Daulton, a leader of the successful Philadelphia Phillies teams of the 1990s, died Sunday after a battle with brain cancer. He was 55.
Daulton was diagnosed with cancer four years ago, although the disease went into remission two years later after a pair of surgeries. However, the cancer returned last year.
On the field, Daulton is best known for his role on the 1993 Phillies team that reached the World Series, ultimately losing to the Toronto Blue Jays on Joe Carter’s historic walk-off home run. Those Phillies teams were a wild bunch, but it was Daulton who was credited with keeping the clubhouse in line. In ’93, he hit .257 with 24 home runs and 105 RBIs while catching 146 games. He then played all six of the Phils’ playoff games, hitting a pair of home runs and driving in seven runs.
His best season came in 1992, though, when he led the National League with 109 RBIs while also belting a career-high 27 home runs to go along with a .908 OPS. The former 25th-round draft pick developed into a three-time All-Star by the time his 14-year career ended.
Daulton found trouble in his post-playing days in the form of multiple arrests and various family issues but ultimately cleaned up his life only to be diagnosed with brain cancer.
“Sometimes I look back at my life, and I see all the baseball I played, the All-Star Games, the World Series, how I helped some guys in the clubhouse, how great my kids are, some of the nice things I’ve done for people along the way,” Daulton said in 2010 in a Philadelphia magazine article, per Philly.com, “and I think maybe I’m doing OK, that maybe things aren’t so bad, just maybe I’m not so crazy after all.”
Thumbnail photo via Eric Hartline/USA TODAY Sports Images
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