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50 Years Later, 76-Year-Old Grandfather Gets MLB Bonus

This story has only a tenuous connection to Chicago sports, but it's a great story of a major league team making good on a promise and the Deep Dish wanted to share it with you.

In 1961, Jim Gentile of the Orioles was one of the best hitters in the American League. He drove in 141 runs. Roger Maris, who set the MLB home run record that year, drove in 142.

But it was recently discovered that Maris had been erroneously credited with an extra RBI -- the stat tables were adjusted, and Maris and Gentile now share the AL 1961 RBI title.

And that might have been the end of this story, if it weren't for MLB Fanhouse writer Greg Couch (who used to work for the Chicago Sun-Times, thus a Chicago connection to this tale).

Couch contacted Gentile about his newfound RBI title, and Gentile told him this story:

... after 1961, he had to negotiate a new contract -- players didn't have agents back then -- with the Orioles GM at the time, Lee MacPhail.

Gentile got a raise, he said, from $15,000 to $30,000. And MacPhail told him at the time that if he had won that RBI title, it would have been worth an extra $5,000.

On Friday night, Lee MacPhail's son Andy -- the former Cubs team president who is now the Orioles GM -- presented him with a check for $5,000, making good on that 49-year-old promise.

See, there are feel-good stories in baseball. You can read the entire story at the link above.