Nick Markakis will be sorely missed here in Baltimore where he has "owned" right field at Camden Yards ("Markakis a class act," Dec. 11). He exudes top-shelf class. What we have learned over the years is that as a Baltimore Oriole, he is a great ball player. As a person, he stands on rarefied air.
He is a consummate professional, and the way he saluted people of Baltimore with a two-page advertisement in The Sun was sincere and from the heart. He even saluted the often overlooked grounds crew at the Yards which in itself may be a first from a professional ballplayer!
His "old school" approach toward how the game should be played was exemplary — just ask his pal Adam Jones. He always placed team above individual achievement. Cal Ripken Sr. would be proud of the way he played the "Oriole Way." He fit the template flawlessly.
I suspect there were nights long after the game had finished and the fans safely at home when he would walk out to right field at Camden Yards and study the nuances of the field, the outfield wall, the way to pick up a skipping line drive and throw out another hapless base runner who had the mettle to test that freak laser arm of his.
Nick, we may have lost you as a ballplayer, but make no mistake, you and your beautiful family will always be welcome here with open arms.
Thanks to a fine man for the enduring memories.