Gerry Fraley

Gerry Fraley, who spent thirty years covering the Texas Rangers and many other sports for The Dallas Morning News, has died at the age of 64 following a two-year battle with cancer. The Dallas Morning News announced his passing on their site on Saturday.

 Brilliant, dedicated and gruff. A bona fide Breslin-esque newspaper character admired by peers, players, managers, coaches, umpires, officials, scouts, clubhouse attendants, at least one commissioner, waitresses in general and a former president in particular.

Fraley, who died early Saturday morning at 64 after a two-year bout with cancer, was a loyal friend, bitter enemy, loving father and a “ballwriter’s ballwriter,” according to the consensus of nearly two dozen national colleagues.

While Fraley was most well-known for his coverage of the Rangers, he also wrote about football, basketball, NASCAR, and many other topics during his four-decade career. He previously covered the Phillies at the Philadelphia Bulletin and the Braves at the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. His impressive career continued right up until a recent Stars-Predators NHL playoff game when he penned the lead and hit his deadline with a minute to spare, “as was his custom.”

“Even as he fought against this dreadful illness,” said DMN boss Garry Leavell. “It was hugely important to Gerry that he didn’t let down his colleagues and his readers. He had a work ethic second to none.”

As expected, the tributes started pouring in immediately and didn’t let up all day. The respect Fraley commanded from his colleagues and those he covered is evident in the reactions. Not to mention a few good stories about his work ethic and sense of humor.

Former Texas Rangers owner (and President of the United States) George W. Bush chimed in, saying “Gerry was an accomplished writer and a keen observer of many sports. It always seemed to me that baseball was his real passion, thereby establishing a kinship and a lasting friendship.”

[Dallas Morning News]

About Sean Keeley

A graduate of Syracuse University, Sean Keeley is the creator of the Syracuse blog Troy Nunes Is An Absolute Magician and author of 'How To Grow An Orange: The Right Way to Brainwash Your Child Into Rooting for Syracuse.' He has also written non-Syracuse related things for SB Nation, Curbed, Neighborhoods.com, and many other outlets. He currently lives in Chicago.