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Mark Belanger

Age: 54

eight-time Gold Glove-winning shortstop with the Baltimore Orioles and key figure in the baseball players' union after his playing career ended in 1982; nicknamed “Blade,” Belanger owned a career .977 fielding percentage, eighth all-time among shortstops at the time of his death; won four pennants and the 1970 World Series with Baltimore; longtime assistant to union head Donald Fehr; was instrumental in keeping players together through strikes in 1985 and 1990 as well as the strike that wiped out the 1994 season; of lung cancer

Died: Baltimore, Oct. 6, 1998

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