When Mickey Mantle was being scouted by the major leagues, he was a guy who seemed to have it all. He was strong and fast and could throw the ball and was an immensely powerful hitter - either right or left-handed.
Mantle’s grandfather died at 60 and his father, whom he deeply loved, died at 40 when Mickey was just 21. Both died from Hodgkin’s Disease, perhaps as a result of mining zinc and lead.
Mantle was a brilliant athlete but he had a terrible injury history which started in high school. He was really not fully healthy very often.
Despite that, he was one of the great natural talents in the history of the game. He was in the classic home run duel with teammate Roger Maris in 1961.
He was also famous, or infamous, for his wild private life. He and teammate Billy Martin were notorious for their drinking and, shall we say, subsequent activities.
Later in life, Mantle’s drinking nearly killed him and he got a kidney transplant. He managed to live a few more years and seemed at peace, which eluded him for much of his life.