There are few tributes like naming a child after one of your loved ones. Los Angeles Angels pitcher Jered Weaver and his wife Kristin did just that with their first-born son, naming him in memory of Weaver's former teammate, Nick Adenhart.
Welcome to the world, Aden David Weaver. The Angels' official Twitter account confirmed that Aden David was named in honor of Adenhart:
For those asking, the Weavers did in fact spell their new son's name Aden in honor of Nick Adenhart.— Los Angeles Angels (@Angels) July 6, 2013
Adenhart and two of his friends were tragically killed in a car accident by a drunk driver in April of 2009. The driver in that incident, Andrew Gallo, was convicted of second-degree murder and several other charges in 2010.
According to D.J. Short of Hardball Talk, Weaver still writes Adenhart's initials into the dirt behind the mound before every start.
Weaver had become close to Adenhart and decided to mentor him during the 2009 season (via ESPN). Adenhart was even going to move into Weaver's apartment.
Instead, Adenhart would pitch just once that season, throwing six shutout innings against the Oakland Athletics. That night, he was killed by Gallo, who ran a red light.
Weaver has since become one of baseball's finest pitchers. He is 2-4 with a 3.79 ERA, 1.21 WHIP and 41 strikeouts in 54.2 innings pitched this season. He has made three consecutive trips to the MLB All-Star Game and has become one of the American League's most consistent starters.
His 20 wins and 1.02 WHIP last season led the American League, and you could argue that since 2010, only Justin Verlander has been better in the AL.
I'm sure Weaver would trade that success to have his friend back. But through his son and the touching tribute of his son's name, he'll always have a piece of Adenhart with him.