Former Cincinnati Reds player Ryan Freel’s father is asking for fans to send any baseball cards they have of him in order to preserve his memory.
Freel committed suicide in 2012 at the age of 36 years old, leaving behind three young daughters. To help the daughters remember their father as a talented baseball player, his father is collecting baseball cards of Freel to give to the girls as a keepsake.
According to WLKY TV in Louisville, Kentucky, a Montana-based collector named Matthew Christian is leading the efforts to collect the cards. Christian will then pass the cards on to the Freel family, with the hope being that they’re able to collect enough cards to produce three binders, one for each of Freel’s daughters.
Freel eight seasons in the majors, largely as a utility man, spending six of those with the Cincinnati Reds. Freel hit .268 with 22 homers and 122 RBI in over 1,900 at-bats in the big leagues. After his death, he was found to be suffering from CTE (chronic traumatic encephalopathy), the first MLB player to be diagnosed with the disease.