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Eighteen years ago today, Cal Ripken Jr. played in his record-breaking 2,131st consecutive game

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On May 2, 1939, Lou Gehrig didn't suit up for the Yankees -- the first game since May 31, 1925 in which he didn't take the field.

Gehrig's streak of 2,130 consecutive games played seemed unbreakable to a generation of baseball fans. And yet, 56 years later, Orioles legend Cal Ripken Jr. played in his 2,131st consecutive game, going 2-for-4 with a home run.

Ripken's streak continued for 501 more games -- ending after September 19, 1998 -- at a record 2,632.


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