CHICAGO, Jan. 24 (UPI) -- Hall of Famer Ernie Banks died Friday night. He was 83 years old. After the Chicago Cubs announced the sad news, athletes from around the globe expressed their sympathy in remembering "Mr. Cub."
"Words cannot express how important Ernie Banks will always be to the Chicago Cubs, the city of Chicago and Major League Baseball. He was one of the greatest players of all time," Tom Ricketts, chairman of the Cubs, said in a statement released by the team. "He was a pioneer in the major leagues. And more importantly, he was the warmest and most sincere person I've ever known.
"Approachable, ever optimistic and kind hearted, Ernie Banks is and always will be Mr. Cub. My family and I grieve the loss of such a great and good-hearted man, but we look forward to celebrating Ernie's life in the days ahead."
I'm so sorry to hear the passing of Mr. Ernie Banks!!! What a Special Man!! Always put a smile on my face when seeing him!! #GodBlessYou— Frank Thomas (@TheBigHurt_35) January 24, 2015
Banks hit 512 home runs in 19 season with the Cubs. His most memorable words were: "It's a great day for baseball. Let's play two!"