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SPORTS: The Reds’ Sean Casey, an all-star at life

MULKEYTOWN, Ill. (BP)–Sean Casey has a reputation as one of baseball’s nicest guys. His kind treatment of everyone he meets is legendary among his teammates and those who know him.

“He’s the most polite and kindhearted player I have met in my 27 years of covering baseball,” said Hal McCoy, a Reds beat writer for the Dayton Daily News, in a Sports Spectrum article about Casey. “His memory is incredible. No matter who you are, if he talks to you once, he’ll remember your name every time he sees you.”

Others have told how the Cincinnati Reds first baseman is genuinely interested in the lives of people who are complete strangers. His warm smile and friendliness often put people at ease and make them feel special.

Casey gives his parents the credit for teaching him how to live as a Christian should live. They taught him the importance of the Golden Rule and how to stay positive in life.

“My father always told me to treat others as you would want to be treated,” Casey said. “When I was growing up, I often saw my dad praying. He showed me by example how a devout Christian should live his life.”

That’s why it’s nice to see Casey having such a solid season. Casey is certainly deserving of his selection as an All-Star, although an injury will keep him from playing in the game.

With a .352 batting average, 15 home runs and 54 RBI, Casey is finally having the season that Reds fans have been waiting for since 1999. That year, he hit .332 with 25 home runs and 99 RBI, but since then those power numbers have proven elusive for Casey. He routinely hits for a high average, but he has never managed more than 20 homers and 89 RBI since 1999.

Nagging injuries have taken their toll on Casey over the past few seasons. And while those are undoubtedly frustrating, Casey can’t complain too much after a serious injury in 1998 threatened his baseball career. A thrown ball struck Casey in the eye and broke four bones.

“I didn’t know whether I would play baseball or even see correctly again,” Casey said in the Sports Spectrum story. “I told my mom and dad that even if I can no longer play baseball, I’ll have a productive life. I knew the Lord wouldn’t give me anything I couldn’t handle.”

Fortunately, Casey rebounded from the incident, and this year he’s well on his way to the best offensive season of his career.

But baseball isn’t the only area where Casey excels. His former teammate Aaron Boone compared him to Forrest Gump. “He’s good at life,” Boone said.

That’s a description that really stood out to me. In this life, we can be good at all kinds of different things. But to be good at life itself — to be so upbeat and to treat others the way Casey treats them — that’s a lofty goal that’s worth pursuing. And it doesn’t take an All-Star to achieve it.
Tim Ellsworth is a regular columnist for BPSports, online at www.bpsports.net. Visit his weblog at www.thewinningspirit.blogspot.com.

    About the Author

  • Tim Ellsworth

    Tim Ellsworth is associate vice president for university communications at Union University in Jackson, Tenn. BP reports on missions, ministry and witness advanced through the Cooperative Program and on news related to Southern Baptists’ concerns nationally and globally.

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