MLB to honor Gehrig on anniversary of famed speech

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NEW YORK (AP) - Major League Baseball is preparing to honor Lou Gehrig on the 75th anniversary of his famed “luckiest man” speech.

MLB will donate $300,000 to organizations that fight against Lou Gehrig’s disease.

The Hall of Famer was suffering from amyotrophic lateral sclerosis when he spoke at Yankee Stadium on July 4, 1939. The first baseman died two years later from ALS at age 37.

MLB players, managers, coaches and umpires will wear a commemorative patch on July Fourth. The tribute will include a video shown at all ballparks featuring a first baseman from each team reciting a line from Gehrig’s speech.

MLB made the announcement on Thursday, the 111th anniversary of Gehrig’s birth.

“When Lou Gehrig delivered his historic farewell speech at Yankee Stadium 75 years ago, he indelibly linked our national pastime to the fight against the disease that would bear his name,” Commissioner Bud Selig said in a statement.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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