Joe Morgan, driving force of Big Red Machine, dies at 77

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CINCINNATI (AP) — The Hall of Fame second baseman Joe Morgan has died.

A family spokesman says he died at his home Sunday in Danville, California. Morgan was suffering from a nerve condition, a form of polyneuropathy.

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Joe Morgan (Photo: MLB)

He became the sparkplug of the Big Red Machine and the prototype for baseball’s artificial turf era.

Morgan was a two-time NL Most Valuable Player, a 10-time All-Star and won five Gold Gloves. He could hit a home run, steal a base and disrupt any game with his daring.

Most of all, the 5-foot-7 dynamo known for flapping his left elbow drove a Cincinnati team featuring the likes of Pete Rose, Johnny Bench and Tony Perez to World Series titles in 1975 and ’76. Joe Morgan was 77 years old.