June 21, 2007

Sammy slams 600

by Dan Bilicki In: Baseball

It’s not every day a major league ball player hits a milestone home run, it only seems like it. Last night’s milestone happened to be one that’s truly deserving of being one though, depending on how you feel about Sammy Sosa that is.

Slammin’ Sammy, the former Cub who captured our hearts as he duelled with Mark McGwire a few years back over the single-season home run record, hit the 600th home run of his famed career. This number puts him in the elite ranks of boppers along with only four other men; Hank Aaron, Babe Ruth, Willie Mays and everybody’s favourite player, Barry Bonds.

So with entry into the 600-club, does this ensure Sammy a place in the hall-of-fame when he wraps up his career? By all means it should, but you would’ve thought the same about Mark McGwire, wouldn’t have you. The difference is that Sammy hit this rarefied-air plateau that should grant him automatic inclusion, even if he was part of the “juiced era”. Time will tell and I’m sure there will be some debate among purists some years down the line when Sosa is up for induction. There’s already debates about 300-win pitchers and 500-home run players being hall-worthy, is an allegedly steroid-abuser and 600 HR hitter shielded from these criticisms on his way to Cooperstown? In these eyes, there shouldn’t be a doubt that Sosa should be enshrined his first time around.

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