Just when you thought 2020 couldn’t get any doggone worse, the Greensboro Grasshoppers announced on Tuesday the death of 9-year-old batdog Miss Lou Lou Gehrig.
Lou Lou was the last of a trio of lovable Black Labradors whose zest for retrieving bats and balls and hijinks during between-innings entertainment made nights out in Greensboro even more memorable.
“This is a heartbreaking loss for our organization, our fans, and the Greensboro community,” Grasshoppers president and general manager Donald Moore said. “Lou Lou was adored by our fans and loved retrieving bats and balls. We are deeply saddened by her death.”
Lou Lou was preceded by her uncle Master Yogi Berra (the only dog ever to be ejected from a baseball game), who died in 2017, and her aunt Miss Babe Ruth (whose ball-bucket found its way to Cooperstown), who died in 2018.
All three dogs went after bats with incredible passion. Whether the bat was whole or in shards, on the ground or still in the batter’s hand after a strikeout, they knew that once their handler let go of their collar it was their time to shine.
No Greensboro game was complete until Miss Lou Lou went on her postgame base race. After being let loose at home plate, she’d race to first, second, third and back home again, stopping to boop each bag with her snout. It was the kind of thing that made fans wait just a little longer before heading to their cars.
Master Yogi and Miss Babe are memorialized with a statue just outside Greensboro’s home park, and the release announcing Miss Lou Lou’s death notes that a memorial for all three dogs is forthcoming.
Miss Lou Lou is survived by her half-sister, Little Jackie Robinson. The team asks that any memorial donated be made to Greensboro Grasshoppers Charities, c/o the Community Foundation of Greater Greensboro, 330 South Greene Street, Suite 100, Greensboro, NC 27401.