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Cal Ripken Jrby Stew ThornleyOn August 241960 Cal Ripken Jrwas born in Harve de GraceMarylandAt the time his dad was in TopecaKansas nearly a half a continent awayCal Sr was a catcher for fox cities Wisconsin an Oriole farm club in the three-I League and celebrated the birth of his first son by driving in the winning run in the 10th inning agianst TopekaCal Ripken Jr inherited athletic talent from both his dad and his momVi Ripken first got her future husbands attention while she was playing softball in collageCals sister Ellen was born a year before himThe other members of then Ripken family have also demonstrated with a bat and a gloveIn 1978 his senior year Cal pitched 60 innings and struck out 100 battersHe also batted 492 and drove in 29 runs in 20 gamesCal was the winning pitcher in the Maryland High School championship gameWhen Cal started high school he only stood 5 feet 7 inches tall and weighed 127 lbsBy the time he graduated he had grown to 6 feet and added 50 pounds to his frameCal quickly signed up to be an Orioles Minor leage team in West VirginiaBy 1981 Cal had progressed to the Orioles top minor leage teamCal got married and a couple of years latter had a baby and named it Rachel MarieCal Ripken Jr went back to playing baseball and became the first to beat Lou Gehrigs recordFather-son combinations on the same team have been rare in the majorsbut the Ripkens were not the firstThere were many other father-son pairs alsoIn 1987 Cal was joined by his brother Billwho played alongside him at second baseSo then they had a threesomeThe Ripkens wanted to share their good fortune with othersThey were active in helping many organizationsThey included the Childrens Center at Johns Hopkins Hospitalthe Balimore School for Performing Arts He
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