Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Travis Hafner Ties Mattingly's Slam Mark

In 1987, a person by the name of Don Mattingly, otherwise known as Donnie Baseball, set a record that was never to be.
He hit six grand slams in one season, which comes to a surprise since Mattingly was never a power hitter.

In 2006, a person by the name of Travis Hafner tied Mattingly's record when he hit his sixth grand slam of the season on August 13.
This comes to no surprise since he also set a record for most grand slams by the all-star break with five.

Mattingly's record was also threatened a couple years ago along with another famous Yankees first baseman, Lou Gehrig.
A fellow named Manny Ramirez was not only three slams away from tying Mattingly, but also was three slams away from tying Gehrigs all-time slam record of 23.
However, Ramirez did not tie the records, and both are still intact.
Hafner does have the potential to break Mattinglys record, but is far away from Gehrig, so at the moment, his record is safe.

For a player to hit six grand slams and that to be considered a record with today's increased home run totals, it seems easy to shatter the record. But it's not.
In order to hit a grand slam, every scenario must be perfectly played out. The bases need to be loaded, which is hard to do in the first place. A sac fly, error, or even a base hit can ruin any chance of a bases loaded opportunity.
The batter must make make contact with the perfect pitch over the right part of the plate with the right amount of strength. It even depends on the field, Coors Field for example, is a hitters park, where as Miller Park is more of a pitcher's park. Yankee Stadium has a short right field porch, Fenway Park has the Green Monster and The Triangle.
So to hit a grandslam, the bases need to be loaded, the batter needs to be alert, and everything has to be perfect.

Mattingly will never again make his attempt to break his record, since he is retired. Hafner, well, he has the rest of August, all of September, and three games in October. It took him one month to hit his sixth slam, he still has 7 weeks left to hit another.


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BallHype: hype it up! Posted by Steve Kenul at 11:42 AM

2 Comments

  • Blogger hseldon posted at 10:25 PM  
    This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
  • Blogger hseldon posted at 10:26 PM  
    Hey buddy, I say the BoSox win the series 3-2 or better. Wager 75 BE credits? Deal?

    ~g~
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