100 years since Cleveland Indians shortstop Ray Chapman became only MLB player to die playing the game

Updated: Aug. 17, 2020 at 7:50 PM EDT
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CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) - Today marks 100 years since the Cleveland Indians’ shortstop Ray Chapman died. He was the only MLB player to die playing the game.

“We try to come down at least once a year don’t make it all the time but I think that Ray was just such an important figure in sports history,” said Mary Denunzio, who visited his grave at Lake View Cemetery in Cleveland.

The Indians shortstop was hit by a pitch on Aug. 16, 1920.

He was rushed to the hospital where he died 12 hours later.

Now, 100 years later, the most tragic pitch thrown in the history of the game, Chapman’s legacy continues to live on.

It’s now become a tradition for fans to leave behind items near his grave for good luck, proving that no matter how much time passes, legends never die.

In 1920, Indians dedicated the rest of the season to Chapman.

His death inspired them to go on to win the World Series for the first time in franchise history.

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