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Anderson Finishes Record Season in Style

September 30, 1996|From Associated Press

Baltimore's Brady Anderson hit his 50th home run Sunday, joining Oakland's Mark McGwire in the 50-homer club and making it only the fourth time that two players have hit 50 homers in a season.

Anderson homered to lead off the game in the Orioles' 5-1 loss to the Blue Jays at Toronto. It was his 12th this season leading off a game, breaking the major-league record set by Bobby Bonds in 1973.

"I just found that out," Anderson said after the game. "I wasn't thinking about that. It's sort of a strange record--it doesn't mean as much to me as the 50, obviously."

Hank Greenberg (58 homers) and Jimmie Foxx (50) both reached the 50-homer plateau in 1938; Ralph Kiner (51) and Johnny Mize (51) did it in 1947; and Roger Maris (61) and Mickey Mantle (54) in 1961.

Anderson became the 14th player to hit at least 50 homers, and those 14 players have combined to do it a total 21 times. Babe Ruth did it four times, and Foxx, Kiner, Mantle and Willie Mays did it twice each.

Anderson also broke Frank Robinson's team record of 49 homers he hit in the 1966 season.

Toronto's Pat Hentgen made his claim for the American League Cy Young Award by winning his 20th game for the Blue Jays.

Hentgen (20-10) gave up seven hits, struck out four and walked one before being pulled after throwing 92 pitches in 7 1/3 innings. He finished the season with a 3.22 earned-run average with 10 complete games.

"If you just look at the numbers, the numbers don't lie," Hentgen said of his Cy Young chances. "But I'll just have to wait and see. Right now it's out of my hands. If it happens, it happens."

--Vinny Castilla and Andres Galarraga hit historic two-run homers and Steve Decker added another in the Colorado Rockies' 12-3 victory over the San Francisco Giants at Denver.

Castilla's homer, his 40th, made Colorado only the second team ever to have three players hit 40 or more homers. The 1973 Atlanta Braves also achieved the feat with Davey Johnson (43), Darrell Evans (41) and Hank Aaron (40).

Galarraga hit his National League-leading 47th homer on Sunday, and Ellis Burks finished the season with 40.

--Minnesota's Paul Molitor ended his record-breaking 19th season with a single to score Chuck Knoblauch with the winning run in the 10th inning as the Twins defeated the Chicago White Sox, 5-4, at Minneapolis.

Molitor had three hits to finish with an American League-best 225 this season as he became the 21st player to reach 3,000 hits. No player had ever reached 3,000 in a season in which he collected 200 hits.

Molitor, who will take a couple weeks to decide whether he will retire or return to the Twins--he probably will be back--said he wasn't thinking of writing a perfect ending to his year.

"You start to realize some of the circumstances make it almost unreal in terms of a way to end a season that's been remarkable and fascinating," he said.

--Detroit's Alan Trammell retired after 20 seasons as the Tigers finished with their 17th consecutive home loss, 7-5, to the Milwaukee Brewers in 10 innings.

--Seattle and Oakland did not hit any home runs or score many runs in the Athletics' 3-1 victory over the Mariners at Oakland, but both teams still finished with record-breaking hitting seasons.

The Mariners finished with a major league record 2,741 total bases, while Oakland set a franchise mark with 2,546. With 245 homers, Seattle also set a team season record, with Oakland doing the same with 243. Baltimore set a major league record with 257.

--The Cleveland Indians failed to become the first team with consecutive 100-victory seasons since the 1979-80 Orioles, losing, 4-1, to the Royals at Kansas City. Chad Ogea (10-6) learned from reporters that Jack McDowell was picked over him to start Game 3 of the playoffs against Baltimore on Friday night. Cleveland finished 99-62 with a game against Seattle wiped out by rain. Last year, the Indians were 100-44.


Final League Leaders


National League: Tony Gwynn, San Diego, .353

Catg.: Avg.

American League: Alex Rodriguez, Seattle, .358


National League: Ellis Burks, Colorado, 142

Catg.: R

American League: Alex Rodriguez, Seattle, 140


National League: Lance Johnson, New York, 227

Catg.: Hits

American League: Paul Molitor, Minnesota, 225


National League: Andres Galarraga, Colorado, 150

Catg.: RBI

American League: Albert Belle, Cleveland, 148


National League: Jeff Bagwell, Houston, 48

Catg.: 2B

American League: Alex Rodriguez, Seattle, 54


National League: Lance Johnson, New York, 21

Catg.: 3B

American League: Chuck Knoblauch, Minnesota, 14


National League: Andres Galarraga, Colorado, 47

Catg.: HR

American League: Mark McGwire, Oakland, 52


National League: Eric Young, Colorado, 53

Catg.: SB

American League: Kenny Lofton, Cleveland, 75


National League: Ellis Burks, Colorado, .639

Catg.: SL%

American League: Mark McGwire, Oakland, .730


National League: Gary Sheffield, Florida, .465

Catg.: OB%

American League: Mark McGwire, Oakland, .467


National League: Barry Bonds, San Francisco, 151

Catg.: BB

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