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Sunday, July 25, 2010
Talking about 'The Hawk'

By Bruce Levine

Andre Dawson’s friends and colleagues talked about “The Hawk” on his induction into the Baseball Hall of Fame.

Gene Michael (1987 Cubs manager): “It was an honor to manage Andre Dawson and watch him display his great talents every day for the year I managed the Cubs. As I found out in that year, he was an even better person than he was a player, and he was a great player.”

Warren Crowmartie (Former Expos teammate): “Andre made me a better player. Just watching what he had to do every day to get ready for a game, I saw the trainers take tons of fluid out of his knees just so he could play. He made me better because I tried to live up to the courage and integrity that he had. He’s one of my best friends. I’m so happy for him.”

Yosh Kowano (Cubs clubhouse manager for 60 years): “Andre Dawson is one of the finest people I’ve ever met. I don’t mean just in baseball. I mean ever in my life. This is a man who always had time for people. Even if it took away from his own personal time.”

Dallas Green (Cubs general manager 1982-1987: “I was the happiest guy in the world when Andre and his agent Dick Moss came to me with that blank contract to sign for 1987. I was embarrassed that I didn’t have more money to give him, but I was thrilled to death that he wanted to play for the Chicago Cubs. It was a great day for the Chicago Cubs and their fans when Andre Dawson made his decision to play for less money than he deserved that season.”

Mel Didier (longtime scout and player development person): “I first saw Andre at Florida A&M when I came out to see some other players. When I saw him hit the ball, and I saw the way the ball bounced when he hit it and how it took off, I said to myself, ‘I have another Hank Aaron here.’ At that time, I ran the draft for the Montreal Expos. And for some reason I let him fall to the 11th round of the draft and still got him. I knew he’d be a great player, but I didn’t know at that time he was also going to be a great man.”