The Colorado Rockies have voted to give a full playoff share to the widow of minor league coach Mike Coolbaugh. He was killed by a line drive this season while coaching first base.
Some of the veteran players decided to award a full share to Amanda Coolbaugh. Their two sons, 5-year-old Joseph and 3-year-old Jacob, will throw out the first pitch in Game 3 at Coors Field on Saturday.
Coolbaugh was a first base coach for the Rockies' Double-A affiliate, the Tulsa Drillers. The former major leaguer was killed July 22, when a line drive struck him in the head.
Mike Coolbaugh was a very good baseball player. Good enough to play in the minor league all-star game. His widow said his real passion was fatherhood.
"He was the best. He had his priorities in line. He cared for his family and kids and would do anything for them," Amanda said.
Amanda won't be at Coors field Saturday night. She is about to give birth to her third child, but her two boys will be on the mound throwing out the first pitch.
On the phone from San Antonio, Texas, Amanda said she was thrilled by the idea.
"The fact that he is getting this much respect back from the nation is amazing. I think he has a huge smile on his face right now," she said.
The players' decision to give a share of the winnings to the family is no small gesture.
If the Rockies win the World Series, that share is worth more than $360,000.
Amanda said the money is secondary.
"This is a baseball family and they have taken care of us. I have kept my fingers crossed for them," she said. "It would be nice to have the good guys win in the end."