2020 has been a great year for former Montreal Expos and Colorado Rockies outfielder Larry Walker. In his final year on the ballot, Walker earned enough support to be voted into the Baseball Hall of Fame. How could his year get any better? Well, how about living out a childhood dream?
On Sunday, Walker will serve as the Colorado Avalanche's official emergency goaltender for their game against the Vegas Golden Knights. Prior to puck-drop, the Avalanche will present Walker with a gift in honor of his impending induction in Cooperstown.
Walker has said on many occasions that before he became a baseball player, he was a kid growing up in British Columbia who dreamed of becoming an NHL goalie. His hockey ambitions never came to fruition, and he instead pursued America's Pastime.
That turned out to be a pretty solid backup plan.
Over 17 seasons, Walker recorded a .313 batting average, ,400 on-base percentage, and .565 slugging percentage, along with 383 home runs and 1,311 RBI with the Expos, Rockies, and St. Louis Cardinals.
The only way we can see Walker don goalie gear is if both active Avalanche netminders go down with injury. It's a rare occurrence, but it happened last month to the Carolina Hurricanes. With James Reimer and Petr Mrazek going down to injury against the Toronto Maple Leafs, they called upon David Aryes, the Leafs' Zamboni driver. Ayres went onto stop eight of ten shots to secure the victory for the Canes.
Who knows, maybe hockey fans will get the chance to see a Baseball Hall of Famer step into the crease on Sunday afternoon in Denver? If that does happen, stop everything and tune in.