Sale says Gwynn’s death caused him to quit chewing tobacco

UNSPECIFIED - CIRCA 1993: Tony Gwynn #19 of the San Diego Padres poses for this photo circa 1993. Gwynn played for the Padres from 1982-01.  

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SAN DIEGO (AP) — American League All-Star starter Chris Sale paid tribute to late Hall of Famer Tony Gwynn, saying he quit chewing tobacco when the San Diego Padres great died of salivary gland cancer in June 2014 at age 54.

The Chicago White Sox pitcher, who leads the major leagues with 14 wins, was picked to start Tuesday night’s game at Petco Park.

He says "I chewed tobacco from 2007 until the day he passed away. I remember seeing that, and just being so shocked."

Sale says "I quit that day, and I haven’t touched it since," adding "I owe him a huge thank you for not only myself but for my family."

A 15-time All-Star, Gwynn spent his entire big league career with the Padres, hitting .338 with 3,141 hits from 1982-01.