Colorado Native Roy Halladay Dies in Plane Crash
Former Major League Pitcher, Roy Halladay, died in a plane crash off the coast of Florida today. He was 40 years old.
Halladay was born in Denver in 1977 and grew up in Arvada. He loved baseball and tried every position on the field before becoming a stellar pitcher at the age of 13. He even trained with Bus Campbell, a Colorado baseball coach who helped Goose Gossage and Brad Lidge. He graduated from Arvada West High School in 1995 and was selected in the first round in the amateur draft by the Toronto Blue Jays. He got the "big call" to the majors in September of 1998.
In his second career start against the Detroit Tigers, Halladay was one out shy of a no-hitter in the 9th inning. He won the game 2-1 and it was his first Major League win.
In 2010, Halladay pitched a perfect game against the Marlins, retiring all 27 batters and striking out 11. It wasn't his only no-hitter of the season. That October, Halladay threw a no-hitter against the Cincinnati Reds in the first game of the NLDS. He was the second pitcher to do that, right behind Don Larsen of the Yankees who did it with a perfect game in 1956. It was the first time in Major League history that a pitcher threw a perfect game and a no-hitter in the same season.
Halladay split his career between the Toronto Blue Jays and the Philadelphia Phillies, wracking up 8 All-Star appearances, two Cy Young Awards (2003, 2010), a career 3.38 ERA, and 2,117 strikeouts. He signed a one-day contract with Toronto in 2013 so he could retire a Blue Jay.
In retirement, Halladay wanted to fly, just like his dad. While growing up in Colorado, his father was a pilot for a food-processing company. Though his wife, Brandy, was totally against the idea, Halladay got his pilot's license and recently purchased an ICON A5, an amphibious two seater aircraft. Halladay was flying this plane by himself when it went down near Holiday, Florida. Ironically, the lead test pilot and director of engineering for the company that builds the ICON A5 also lost their lives in the same type of plane when it crashed in May of this year.
Halladay leaves behind a wife and two sons. There is no official cause of the crash at this time.