Longtime A's broadcaster Ray Fosse dies after 16-year battle with cancer

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OAKLAND, CA - APRIL 27: Former Oakland Athletics catcher Ray Fosse on the field during a ceremony honoring the 1973 world series champions before the game against the Baltimore Orioles at O.co Coliseum on April 27, 2013 in Oakland, California. The Baltimore Orioles defeated the Oakland Athletics 7-3. (Photo by Jason O. Watson/Getty Images)
Ray Fosse won two World Series titles as a catcher with the A's. (Photo by Jason O. Watson/Getty Images)

Ray Fosse, a former MLB catcher and longtime broadcaster for the Oakland Athletics, died after a battle with cancer on Wednesday. He was 74.

Fosse stepped away from his duties with A's in August, revealing he had been fighting cancer for the last 16 years. His wife Carol shared the news in a statement through his own website:

It is with a heavy heart that Carol Fosse, Ray Fosse’s wife of 51 years, shares the sad news that Ray Fosse lost his battle to cancer on October 13, 2021 after silently fighting it for the past 16 years. Carol and daughters, Nikki and Lindsey, send their love out to family, friends and fans that mourn his loss with them.

The A's released their own statement mourning Fosse, who had worked as a color commentator for the club since 1986. 

A native of Marion, Illinois, Fosse entered professional baseball as a first-round draft pick for the Cleveland Indians in 1965. He made his MLB debut in 1967 and found his first starting role for Cleveland in 1970, the first of his two career All-Star selections.

His appearance in that 1970 All-Star Game would be marred by his infamous home plate collision with Pete Rose, which left Fosse with a fractured shoulder. Even though the incident left pain in his shoulder for the rest of his career, Fosse said he wasn't bitter toward Rose.

Fosse was traded to the A's in 1973 and helped the team win two World Series championships in 1973 and 1974. His career would also see him spend time with the Seattle Mariners and Milwaukee Brewers, until his retirement in 1980. He finished his career with 758 hits, 61 homers, a .256/.306/.367 slash line and two Gold Glove Awards.

Fosse joined the A's broadcast booth in 1986 and was part of one of the most well-regarded crews in baseball in recent years, alongside play-by-play announcer Glen Kuiper.

News of Fosse's death was met with an outpouring of tributes from peers and fans:

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