The End Of The Streak
Gehrig hit the 2,000 consecutive games played mark on May 31, 1938, but shortly thereafter problems started surfacing. Gehrig was no longer hitting like he used to. His batting average that season fell below .300. The rest of the Yankees made up for it, winning the pennant and sweeping the Chicago Cubs in the World Series, but it was clear that something was wrong. Gehrig came back in 1939, but he soon realized that his poor playing was hurting the whole team. On May 2, 1939, after 2,130 consecutive games, Gehrig voluntarily benched himself. In June, the Mayo Clinic diagnosed Gehrig with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, which would soon become known as Lou Gehrig's disease.
Gehrig formally retired from baseball on July 4, 1939, in Yankee Stadium, where he gave one of the most memorable speeches in the history of sports, declaring himself to be "the luckiest man on the face of the earth." He spent 1940 working as a parole commissioner for New York City, interviewing various convicted criminals, but by the beginning of 1941 he was too weak to work any more, even on crutches. He died on June 2, 1941.
- Lou Gehrig - Career Statistics
- Lou Gehrig - Gehrig, 'iron Man' Of Baseball, Dies At The Age Of 37
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