Exclusive Articles
The Man Known as “Steady Eddie” is One You Should Know, As Well Print E-mail
Written by Bryan W. Alaspa   
Monday, 01 April 2013

Eddie Murray was always reliable.  Throughout his major league baseball career he was known as "Steady Eddie" and he lived up to that nickname.  He spent a large part of his career playing the American League, wherein he was the designated hitter.  During that time he was known as one of the most productive and reliable hitters the sport had at the time.  While his name may not be as famous as some of the big-name sluggers you might know, Eddie Murray deserves to be named right along with them.  Eddie Murray also made sure his skills were sharp each year by playing exhibition games during spring training, something that is only just now ending, and the regular season is getting set to start.

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500 HRC Members Led The Way On Opening Day Print E-mail
Written by Jim Rednour   
Monday, 01 April 2013

Other sports have season openers, but the “Opening Day” of America’s Pastime marks the ceremonial beginning of spring. Every MLB team starts the season with a clean slate and fans never know what they may see on Opening Day…like a game winning home run from one of history’s greatest sluggers – a 500 Home Run Club member.

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The Legend of Reggie Jackson Continues to Involve the Yankees Print E-mail
Written by Bryan W. Alaspa   
Monday, 04 March 2013

There are so few living legends still alive today when it comes to the world of baseball. And when it comes to baseball from the 1970s, there are a few names that probably leap to mind. And if one were to ask a fan which baseball legend truly defined the entire decade, well, then there is probably only one name that really comes to mind: Reggie Jackson. The man who would become known as “Mr. October” for his consistent and exciting performances in the post-season for the Yankees, is still active amongst the Yankees coaching and managing staff.

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As Albert Pujols pursues 500-Club membership how will it help the Angels Print E-mail
Written by Bryan W. Alaspa   
Monday, 04 March 2013

One thing is very much true and that is the fact that Albert Pujols seems destined for greatness. During his time with the St. Louis Cardinals, he was beloved by the entire city. There was a running joke that, were Pujols to ask, any citizen within the city would have opened their front doors to him and allowed him to take anything he wanted from their houses. Whether or not that is true, there is little doubt that Albert Pujols has outstanding numbers, and there appears to be nothing that can stop him from entering the 500 home run club.

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Some 500 HR Club Members Managed; Others Didn’t Print E-mail
Written by Jim Rednour   
Friday, 01 March 2013

Technically speaking; “Mr. Cub” was MLB’s first black manager. After retiring as a player on December 1, 1971, the Chicago Cubs honored Ernie Banks by making him the first player in Cubs’ history to have his number retired.  Two years later, The Cubs signed him as a coach and on May 8, 1973, when Cubs manager Whitey Lockman was ejected from the game, coach Ernie Banks filled in as manager for the two innings of the 12-inning 3-2 win over the San Diego Padres. Thus, he was technically, if not officially, MLB's first black manager, predating his 500 Home Run Club colleague Frank Robinson's hiring by almost two years.

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Givin’ It Up: When, Where and Who Gave Up 500th Home Runs Print E-mail
Written by Jim Rednour   
Friday, 01 February 2013

Amidst the unabated celebration and public hoopla that accompanied each 500th landmark home run blast by baseball’s greatest sluggers – the members of The 500 Home Run Club® - there was one person who least wanted to be part of the legendary event…the pitcher who gave up the 500th home run.

On September 16, 2007, a day when the White Sox handed out Jim Thome bobbleheads as a promotion, the Chicago DH was 0-for-4 when he came to bat with the game knotted at 7 in the bottom of the ninth. After Darin Erstad singled to start the inning, “The Thomenator” cracked a 3-2 pitch off Dustin Moseley for his 500th career homer, capping Chicago's rally from a 7-1 deficit.

"There are 499 other guys who gave one up," Moseley said. "Somebody had to do it and I can handle it."
 
Frank Thomas launched his 500th home run as a Toronto Blue Jay in the first-inning of a June 28, 2007 game in Minnesota. Batting in the DH spot “The Big Hurt” drilled a 1-2 pitch from Twins starting pitcher Carlos Silva an estimated 396 feet over the Metrodome’s left-center field fence for a three-run shot and a 4-0 Toronto lead in the first inning. 

Even though it was well known that Thomas was sitting one home run away from his 500th career long ball, Silva said he had other thoughts on his mind -- like not walking the designated hitter to load the bases with only one out in the inning.

"To be honest with you, I didn't pay attention to if he hit 500," Silva said. "I just tried to make my pitches and to have a good game. That's what I tried to do. I didn't want to walk him."

Silva certainly didn't walk Thomas. Instead, he served up a slider that hung over the plate long enough for “Big Frank” to pound out of the parks for entry into into baseball’s most exclusive club – The 500 Home Run Club.    

Silva didn’t relish watching Thomas’ massive frame rounding the bases with a boyish grin on his face and fist pumping in the air, but he couldn’t contain a smile of his own when talking to the media after the game.

"What can I say?" Silva said with a smile. "He got 500. I'm happy for him, and happy right now, because we won the game. There's really nothing I can say. It's a homer. He hit 500, but it's only one to me, you know?"
 
When the Atlanta Braves traded Kyle Davies to Kansas City in the summer of 2007, he was looking for a fresh start with the Royals. Unfortunately for Davies, on August 4th he ran into a red-hot Alex Rodriguez in his first inning as a Royals pitcher, and served up A-Rod’s 500th home run.

Despite finding himself in the baseball equivalent of hapless defender in a Michael Jordon slam-dunk poster, Davies says he’s  happier than he's been in a long time.  "I saw a picture that my Dad took of me smiling during that game. You know the last time I saw a picture of me smiling during in a game I was pitching?" he said. "After my third start in the major leagues, which was two years ago. ... And [this one] was after my first start in Yankee Stadium after I got my (butt) kicked."

"A week later, it was kind of cool," Davies said. "He sent me over a bat. He signed it. It said 'To Kyle, it was a really good pitch. Sorry. Home run No. 500 to a good sport. A-Rod.' "

A day after serving up Manny Ramirez's historic 500th home run on May 31, 2008, Orioles right-hander Chad Bradford was not in the mood to speak with the media. A right-handed submariner who had allowed just five home runs since the beginning of the 2005 season, and no homers to a right-handed hitter (like Manny) since May 2006. Bradford left the clubhouse before reporters were allowed inside, 

His manager Dave Trembley, however, had nothing but praise for Manny Being Manny.  "Congratulations to Ramirez on his 500th," said Trembley. "That's a tremendous milestone for his career and for baseball. "Obviously, he will go down as one of the greatest power hitters of all time."

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Usually When a Player Hits 500 Homers they Get into the Hall of Fame, but Maybe Not for McGwire Print E-mail
Written by Bryan W. Alaspa   
Monday, 28 January 2013

When it comes to getting into the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, there has always been one way that was certain. That way was to hit 500 home runs or more and you were probably a shoo-in. For years, the mark of 500 homers was the gold standard, almost impossible to reach, and it was the one way to guarantee your jersey would end up on display at the Hall. Then came the era of baseball that has become known as the steroid era, and suddenly there was a spike in players capable of reaching that total, and now there are doubts about whether or not the players from that era will end up in the Hall of fame.

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Rafael Palmeiro: Not Destined for the Hall of Fame? Print E-mail
Written by Bryan W. Alaspa   
Monday, 28 January 2013

When you look at the stats, it seems like Rafael Palmeiro should be a certain entry into the Baseball Hall of Fame. If you take all of the controversy about steroid usage out of the equation entirely, just looking at the numbers, and you see a man who set records and who, in any other era but the steroid era, would have been a certain bet for the Hall.

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Will Albert Be Ready for 2013? All Signs Point to “Yes” Print E-mail
Written by Bryan W. Alaspa   
Monday, 28 January 2013

There is no doubt about the fact that fans of Albert Pujols found 2012 to be more than a little bit of frustrating. Pujols had only just made a major decision and turned down an offer from the St. Louis Cardinals, left the organization and then signed with the Anaheim Angels. It was a big step since he was beloved to the point of hero worship among St. Louis Cardinals fans. Expectations among Angels fans, however, were as high as the mountains that border California.

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HOW 500 HRC MEMBERS STACKED UP Print E-mail
Written by Jim Rednour   
Monday, 31 December 2012

Interactive Stat Chart Lets You Compare 500 HRC Members Throughout Their Career

Although it’s a bit outdated (having been created in 2007 and not updated since, the New York Times published a very interesting interactive online tool called “Paths to the Top of the Home Run Charts” that allows fans to view a year-by-year comparison of how several members of the 500 Home Run Club® stacked up against each other at various ages.

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Will Manny Ramirez Be Able to Find a Home in 2013? Print E-mail
Written by Bryan W. Alaspa   
Thursday, 13 December 2012

Fans of the Oakland As knew that it was a risk when the team signed controversial slugger Manny Ramirez. The man has all but retired in 2011 under a cloud of accusations that would seem to preclude him from consideration by most teams. However, given his stats, and his abilities, it seemed like a risk that was worth taking, so the As brought him on. Fans may have expressed their dubiousness, but they were also cautiously optimistic. Maybe Manny had put his troubled past behind him and maybe he would return to his former glory. Then, halfway through the season, Manny requested that the As release him and those hopes were dashed.

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After an Aggravating 2012, 2013 Looking Bright for Albert Pujols Print E-mail
Written by Bryan W. Alaspa   
Thursday, 13 December 2012

For fans of the high-hitting player Albert Pujols, 2012 was a frustrating year. Pujols had just left a very lucrative career with the St. Louis Cardinals where he dominated the team and helped lead them routinely into the post-season and to World Series Championships. He was also adored and beloved by the St. Louis community, which made his trade to the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim even more heartbreaking for some, sending shockwaves among baseball fans throughout the Midwest.

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Mark McGwire gives back by giving to children Print E-mail
Written by Bryan W. Alaspa   
Friday, 30 November 2012

Mark McGwire was one of the most feared baseball players at the plate in the history of the game.  Few players have dominated the field at the plate like McGwire did in a career that spanned decades and a variety of teams.  He first became known for wearing an Oakland A’s uniform and then electrified the entire nation in his pursuit of the single-season home run record in 1998 by competing neck and neck against Sammy Sosa of the Chicago Cubs.

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Mr. Cub, Ernie Banks, strives to eliminate prejudice and enhance neighborhoods Print E-mail
Written by Bryan W. Alaspa   
Friday, 30 November 2012

 Ernie Banks is still a man beloved by Chicago Cubs fans.  There was something infectious about Banks and his ability to instill excitement among the fans.  It has been rumored that Banks was so in love with playing that he once stated he would like to play two games rather than just one.  During his playing days, when the team itself might not have been much to write home about, he was the player that the fans came to see.  To this day he is still with the Chicago Cubs and beloved by fans.

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500 Home Run Club® Member Moments in a Media Crazy World Print E-mail
Written by Jim Rednour   
Friday, 30 November 2012

One of the most amazing feats in major league sports, the home run, happens so quickly that you might miss it entirely, if you’re not looking. A major league fastball covers the distance from the pitchers’ mound to home plate in less than half a second.  Then, after making contact on the sweet-spot of a bat (like those featured in our October content), it does an abrupt and thunderous “about face”…and spends the next 2 ½ to 4 seconds sailing high into the seats before it officially becomes a home run ball.

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The Babe Ruth Award Print E-mail
Written by Jim Rednour   
Thursday, 01 November 2012

The “Babe Ruth Award” (a.k.a. the World Series “Most Valuable Player Award”) was developed by the New York chapter of the Baseball Writers' Association of America in honor of Babe Ruth and first awarded in 1955, one year after the Bambino's death.
 

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Hank Aaron Award Print E-mail
Written by Jim Rednour   
Thursday, 01 November 2012

The Hank Aaron Award was introduced in 1999 to honor the 25th Anniversary of Hank Aaron surpassing Babe Ruth's all-time home run record. It was the first major award to be introduced in more than thirty years and it recognizes the best overall hitter in each league.

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A baseball legend gives back to the game he loves and enriches the lives of children Print E-mail
Written by Bryan W. Alaspa   
Wednesday, 31 October 2012

During his career Harmon Killebrew had a couple of nicknames. He was known as Hammerin’ Harmon, but that was just one nickname and one shared by other baseball players in baseball history. The one that seemed to stick the best was “Killer.” He was a man who played first base, third base and left field, during his entire 22-year career. In that time, the numbers he racked up were, to use an understatement, impressive. However, it was what he did after he retired that really showed the man was no “killer”, but, in fact, a man with a big heart dedicated to helping children around the world.

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Alex Rodriguez may set records on the field, but is also generous off the field Print E-mail
Written by Bryan W. Alaspa   
Wednesday, 31 October 2012

There are few modern day baseball players that seem to divide baseball fans like Alex Rodriguez in today’s game. He is known as a high-priced slugger, who hits the ball out of the park on a routine basis, but perhaps it is his attitude off the field or his high price tag that causes some fans to want to root against him. One thing is for sure, however, and that’s the fact that A-Rod, as he is known, may be one of the best sluggers in baseball, but he is also generous with his time and money off the field.

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While Albert Pujols may hit the ball far, his charity work targets Down Syndrome Print E-mail
Written by Bryan W. Alaspa   
Wednesday, 31 October 2012

Albert Pujols is generally well respected and loved by fans and baseball players. He is not known for being overtly controversial or disrupting in the clubhouse and there are many St. Louis Cardinals fans who still speak well of him. For those who face off against him, however, he is a terrifying competitor and something to be feared when it comes to opposing pitchers.

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The Man with the Unusual Stance: the Great Mike Schmidt Print E-mail
Written by Bryan W. Alaspa   
Tuesday, 02 October 2012

Mike Schmidt was known for his unusual way of standing. Oh, sure, he also had impressive numbers and hit the ball out of the park, but it was not just his slugging percentage or his home run abilities that made pitchers fear him. No, it was his rather strange way of standing at the plate that really caused them fits.

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