Cal Ripken, Jr.
was a shortstop and third baseman
for the Baltimore Orioles for his entire career (1981-2001), a rare
occurrence in Major League Baseball today. Nicknamed "The Iron Man"
for his relentless work ethic and reliability on the field, Ripken
is most remembered for playing a record 2,632 straight games over
17 seasons, shattering the record previously held by Lou Gehrig at
2,131. He was a 19-time All Star and is considered to be one of the
best shortstops professional baseball has ever seen. In 2007 he was
inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame, after earning the
third highest voting percentage in Hall of Fame history. Mr. Ripken
is CEO of Ripken Baseball, Inc., (www.RipkenBaseball.com
company dedicated to growing the game of baseball at the grassroots
level, and the Cal Ripken, Sr. Foundation
), which uses baseball as a tool to
help underserved youth. He currently lives in Maryland with his
wife, Kelly, and two children, Rachel and Ryan.
Kevin Cowherd is an award-winning sports
columnist formerly with The Baltimore
Sun. He has also written for Men''s Health, Parenting, and Baseball Digest magazines
and is the author of a collection of columns, Last Call at the 7-Eleven.
He has coached youth baseball, basketball, and soccer teams for
many years. He is the father of three and lives with his wife,
Nancy, near Baltimore, Maryland.