I had never heard of Luke Appling before July 19, 1982. It was on that day, in Washington D.C., that 75-year-old Luke Appling hit a 250-foot homer off Warren Spahn at RFK Stadium. The memorable homer took place during the Cracker Jack Old Timers' Classic.
I was barely a teen then and my mind was a sponge absorbing any bit of baseball history. I remember memorizing anything I could from the top-ten list of home run leaders to members of the Hall of Fame.
Appling was enshrined into Cooperstown in 1964 along with Red Faber, Burleigh Grimes, Miller Huggins, Tim Keefe, Heinie Manush and John Montgomery Ward.
As a player, Appling was know as "old aches and pains" since he had a habit of complaining about his aches and pains to teammates.
When it was all said and done, Appling finished his 20-year career with seven All-Star appearances, two batting titles, a .310 career batting average and 2,749 hits.
He played all his games for the Chicago White Sox.