Former Orioles pitcher Mike Flanagan was found dead Wednesday and several outlets reported it was an apparent suicide by the 59 year old. Thursday, the Baltimore Sun is reporting Flanagan took his own life with a self-inflicted gunshot. Authorities reportedly received a 911 call at 4:26 p.m. ET Wednesday to report a death. Police officers then found Flanagan's body on a trail that lead to a barn on his property. The report also indicated the wound was to Flanagan's face, so it was initally difficult for police to identify the body as Flanagan's.
"It is with deep sadness that I learned of the death of my friend Mike Flanagan earlier this evening," Orioles owner Peter Angelos said in a statement released by the team Wednesday night. "In over a quarter century with the organization, Flanny became an integral part of the Orioles family, for his accomplishments both on and off the field. His loss will be felt deeply and profoundly by all of us with the ballclub and by Orioles fans everywhere who admired him. On behalf of the club I extend my condolences to his wife, Alex; and daughters Kerry, Kathryn and Kendall."
Flanagan won the Cy Young Award in 1979 -- when he went 23-9 with a 3.08 ERA -- and was a member of the Orioles' 1983 World Series championship team. In parts of 18 seasons, Flanagan went 167-143 with a 3.90 ERA. He also pitched for the Blue Jays from 1987-90.Flanagan also spent time as a member of the team's broadcast crew and in the team's front office.
"It's just shock right now," former Orioles catcher Rick Dempsey told the Baltimore Sun. "I know everybody that played with him loved him to death. He was the backbone of that pitching staff. He never quit — this guy never quit. He was there for the duration. We had so many great games and so many great times. I just can't believe it."
"I am so sorry to hear about Mike's passing," Cal Ripken, Jr. said in a statement. "He was a good friend and teammate and our thoughts are with Alex and his family. Mike was an Oriole through and through and he will be sorely missed by family, friends and fans. This is a sad day."
Finally, the Flanagan family has issued a statement through the Orioles' front office (via Orioles Insider):
"We thank you for your support and kind words at this difficult time. Thank you for respecting our privacy as we grieve. A private memorial will be held at a later date."
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