Baseball holds a special place in American sports and cultural history. It has shaped the overall society and instilled the customs of sports tradition in households. MLB has a long history of over 150 years, dating back to the 19th century.
Over the years, we’ve witnessed some incredible moments in baseball. However, when we say that MLB from the beginning has been iconic, that would be an understatement. Therefore, we have compiled the moments in MLB history.
Jackie Robinson Breaking the Color Barrier
This has to be on the top, as Jackie was the first African American to sign for MLB.He broke the infamous color barrier. Before him, all colored people used to play only in the Negro leagues.
Robinson signed with the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1947 and started a new chapter in MLB and American history. This broke the shackles for team owners as he became the catalyst for teams signing players based on talent and not color.
Of course, the initial years were dreadful for Robinson, as the fans and other teams mocked and harassed him. But he rose above the hate and put his haters to shame with his performances throughout his career.
In his first season, Robinson was awarded the Rookie of the Year and later inducted into the Hall of Fame. He also became the first sports person whose jersey number was retired across the league. Every year on 15 April, all players wear a 42-number jersey in the match in Robinson’s honor. The day is also known as Jackie Robinson Day.
Lou Gehrig’s Farewell Speech
Retirement shows the magnitude and impact of a player. The sudden retirement of Gehrig shocked the world. He played for the New York Yankees and was a significant player.
Unfortunately, when he was diagnosed with ALS. Lou was forced to take early retirement, leaving the fans shattered and in shock. His farewell speech is still remembered today. It was one of the most emotional speeches ever in sports history. Perhaps ALS is also often referred to as Lou Gehrig’s disease.
The iconic phrase, “the luckiest man on the face of the Earth” in his speech still lives in the fans’ minds. He played the game he loved the most through the early stages of the illness. This is not something you come across very often in sports. But, MLB indeed is more than a passion for some.
Babe Ruth‘s Called Shot
The world series between the Chicago Cubs and New York Yankees saw one of the oddest and most iconic moments in baseball history. People still talk about it.
In game three at Wrigley Field, Babe Ruth was the bat in the fifth inning. He got two strikes. After which, he pointed two fingers at the crowd. He struck the ball straight into the stands, hitting the home run.
Eventually, the Yankees won the series 4-0 and became champions. But the Babe Ruth moment became memorable. He later clarified his actions as he pointed to the crowd to tell them he had two strikes and the next one was going into the stands. Hence, it was considered a called shot. No one can predict such actions in sports betting.
Hank Aaron’s 715th Home Run
As they say, every record is meant to be broken. This was untrue in MLB for a long time as the legends of the game upheld the records, and it was near impossible to break them. Until Hank, Aaron rewrote history in 1974.
Babe Ruth held the record for most home runs by a single player. Aaron ended the record and his career with 755 home runs. What it did was it marked the beginning of the transition. New players began to break records set for decades by the legends, and a new wave of players started taking over. Barry Bonds from the San Francisco Giants broke Aaron’s record in 2007.
Shot Heard ‘Round the World
The Giants and the Dodgers were in a three-match series. It was the last match of the World Series. The series was drawn with one each, and the Giants were the underdogs going into the match.
Thompson came to bat and hit the ball across the field into the left side of the stands. It was a home run. It changed the complexion of the game. This very particular shot was labeled as the shot heard around the world.
Pete Rose 4,192nd Hit
Of MLB records, one record that looked impossible to break was Ty Cobb’s hit record. This benchmark was held by Ty for 57 years. However, on 11 September 1985, Pete Rose in Riverfront stadium did the unthinkable.
The record-breaking hit of 4,192 came on the pitch of Eric Snow. After the shot, the spectators gave a standing ovation for over seven minutes. What Pete did was remarkable, and proved himself to be called one of the greatest of all time.
Kirk Gibson’s Walkoff Home Run
Moments like this are rare in sports. Athletes are meant to get injured. However, when you do something impossible, your name is written in gold in history books. That was exactly what Kirk Gibson did in the World Series in 1988.
The LA Dodgers were up against Oakland Athletics in the World Series. Gibson suffered injuries on both of his legs and was taken off the batting lineup. It was the first game, and at the end of the ninth with two outs, Gibson walked onto the park.
The score was 3-4 in favor of Oakland. Gibson hit the ball out of the park for two home runs. The Dodgers not only won the game, but they also won the World Series.
Bill Mazeroski’s World Series Winning Home Run
This incident seems like it is taken from a movie. The last inning of the last game in the World Series could not get any bigger or better than that. Mazeroski was the second baseman and the score was 9-9 with no other base. He hit the ball out of the park and scored the World Series-winning home run. What an iconic moment!