Monday, September 25, 2017

The Bash Brothers: Big Mac and Canseco 9/25/17

Hey baseball fans!

Aaron Judge just set a new rookie record with 50 home runs in a season! But who hit 49, you ask? Well, his name is Mark McGwire and he was one half of one of the greatest hitting duos of the late '80s: the Bash Brothers.

The Oakland Athletics went to three straight World Series from 1988-1990 and one (well, more like two) of the reasons for their success was two young sluggers who won back-to-back Rookie of the Year Awards in 1986 and 1987, respectively: Jose Canseco and Mark McGwire. They were known as the Bash Brother because, well, they could really bash the baseball. Like I said before, Big Mac hit 49 home runs in his rookie season, 1987, but Canseco's 33 rookie dingers in '86 aren't half bad either. During the full seasons that they played together, which was from 1987-1991, they won a combined three home run titles, each hit 30 or more home runs in four seasons, and played for the AL in the All Star Game a combined nine times. Big Mac and Canseco helped the A's win the World Series in 1989 in a sweep over the Giants and even though neither hit any home runs during the Bay Area Series, both batted over .290 to etch their names into Oakland sports lore.

Canseco was traded to the Rangers midway through the 1992 season and then bounced around the league until retiring in 2001, but finished his career with 462 career home runs. McGwire, meanwhile, stayed with the A's until getting traded to the Cardinals during the 1997 season and would go on to set the record for most home runs in a single season in 1998 with 70 (but it was broken three years later by Barry Bonds) and is one of two hitters in baseball history with back-to-back seasons of at least 60 home runs (the other being Sammy Sosa). He finished his career with 583 home runs, which is good for eleventh on the all-time list.

It's sad that neither of these great hitters are in the Hall of Fame, but boy did they give excitement to the city of Oakland in the late 1980s. "The Bash Brothers" is a pretty good nickname, after all. Thanks for reading this post and I hope you enjoyed it. Check back soon for more of "all the buzz on what wuzz."


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