John Brattain, who wrote for Baseball Think Factory, The Hardball Times and Baseball Digest Daily, has died at age 44. Baseball Daily's announcement is here.
I'm sure Hugo will want to write a memorial for him but just for me, he was one of the good guys and I'm really sad he's gone so young. He was nice to us, sending us encouraging comments. And, of course he was a great writer.
He posted on Baseball Daily Digest a bit back that he was having heart issues and that surgery was in his future, but said he didn't think his life was in danger and that he would recover.
He leaves behind a wife and two teenage daughters.
[Note by hugo, 03/24/09 8:15 PM EDT ] Thanks, rince. This is incredibly sad news. Way back before I ever could’ve even dreamed of writing about baseball, John was one of the guys I would read and appreciate how good baseball writing could be. He was an excellent writer with an inquisitive mind, a quick wit, and a good heart. The Jays community will really miss him, and so will I. My best wishes and prayers go out to his family.
John was always encouraging about our little site and would drop by with a kind word even when it felt like our readership was in single digits. Quick story - I remember one time I noticed an article of his on Hardball Times about how the Jays should sacrifice bunt more. That wasn't something I agreed with so I wrote a rather forceful article about why I didn't think that made sense. Even though Brattain was something of a mentor to me, he wrote me a long and friendly e-mail explaining more of his perspective and explaining where he agreed and didn't agree with me - he wasn't the least bit testy. That's just the way he was - never quick to anger, always quick to point out when you had a good point, genuinely enjoying the back-and-forth and taking everything in good humour.