The Real Crash Davis (sorta)

Mike Hessman………go ahead I’ll wait for you to google him.

Mike Hessman is the real-life Crash Davis, except he’s way, way better (sorry Crash) and has played way, way longer.

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Mike is 37 years old, he’s played in the minor leagues for 19 seasons and he just broke the 80 year standing record for career homeruns in the minors by hitting his 433rd four-bagger.  He is the first person to hit more than 400 minor league home runs born after the start of World War I. The man whose record he broke, Buzz Arlett, retired in 1937 and died in 1964.

You see, Mike does one thing and one thing well: he hits big-ass homeruns. 

His career minor league batting average is just .232., he’s NEVER hit over .296 and he has 2,347 minor league strikeouts. That’d be fourth in MLB history. He’s struck out 27 percent of his minor league at-bats.  BUT HE HAS 433 HOMERUNS!  Mike is the epitome of a guy swinging from his heels, 25% of his career hits have been homeruns.  READ THAT AGAIN.

Just for fun, cause this is fun right!?!?!  We’re here to have fun goddamnit…….let’s quickly compare the real Crash Davis with the real Mike Hessman:

Crash Davis of the Durham Bulls played approximately 13 years in the minors (seemingly he played one more season in Asheville after Durham).  Totaling 247 homeruns for his minor league career.  He married? banged the “Penny Lane” of minor league baseball jersey-chasers (Annie Savoy), made $400 for performing and act of god and producing a rain-out at the drop of a hat, taught future big-leaguer “Ebby Calvin LaLoosh” how to throw a breaking ball, and he believes there should be a constitutional amendment outlawing astroturf and the designated hitter.  He also made it to the majors an undetermined amount of times, BUT once he was there for 21 days.

  • The 21 greatest days of his life; 21 days of never carrying his own luggage; he hit white balls for batting practice and all the hotels had room service.  Not to mention the women…….they all had long legs and brains.  I’m assuming after his retirement from baseball in 1989, he moved back to Durham permanently to marry Annie Savoy and raise little meats…I mean baseball players.

Mike Hessman’s career stats blow Crash’s out of the water.:

  • Out of the 19 full seasons in the minors, I took his 13 LOWEST homerun hitting seasons just to make the comparison fair to Crash’s 13 minor league seasons.  In his worst 13 seasons, Mike still managed to crush 282 bombs.  Beating out Crash’s previous record of 247 dingers by 35.
  • Hessman has been called up to “The Show” five times, playing for the Braves, Tigers and the Mets.
  • His major league stats are as follows: 109 games, 223 at-bats, 42 hits, 14 homers and 33 rbi’s.  He batted .188 with a .422 slg% and .694 ops.  See what I mean?  In 223 at-bats he hit a homerun 15.9% of the time, 33% of his major league hits were homeruns!

Now I don’t know how many barely functioning, eyelid breathing, big-armed pitching prospects that Hessman has matured into starting major leaguers, BUT one thing is for sure, Hessman sure can RAKE when he makes contact with the ball.

So with almost 20 full seasons of baseball under his belt and no real sign of another call-up to the big leagues…..why does he keep doing it?

Hessman:

“Baseball is the only thing I’ve ever done and I’m going to stick with it as long as I can, I know it doesn’t last forever. I’ve had former teammates call me after they quit, a year after they are in a 9-to-5 job, and they say they shouldn’t have left. There are times you get frustrated and think you’ve had enough, but this is a pretty good gig.”

Sears sucks, Mike.  I worked there once, sold old ladies Kenmores. Nasty, whoa, nasty stuff.

On behalf of any athlete out there that may have quit on their dream a few years before they really should’ve, I applaud you Mike Hessman.  Keep with it, keep playing and keep bashing homeruns until they literally peel the bat out of your cold, dead fingers.  Cause ANYTHING else you could be doing right now would not be as cool or as fun as going to the ballpark every day.

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The 22 year Anniversary of Nolan Ryan Whoopin Some Ass

If you’re old enough and care to admit it, you may remember that on this date 22 years ago, a young and virile Robin Ventura (no relation to Jesse “The Body” Ventura) caught a Nolan Ryan fastball square in his backpack.  The G. I. Joe Retaliation was unequivocally and exponentially greater than any Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson/Bruce Willis-lead sequel EVER conceived.

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Robin charged Batman (Nolan Ryan) with the fury of a thousand infant-hand punches, causing Batman to pull out his finishing move:  The Nolan Ryan Face Crippler.

In an epic battle to the almost-bleeding but not really scathed, the two men walked away with their pride and dignity……..well, their pride anyway.  I mean, Ventura kinda got his ass kicked and yet really no solid punches seemed to land.  Ryan’s hand probably hurt a bunch from hitting Robin’s forehead, kinda like hitting a wall after your girlfriend broke up with you (I guess Robin’s the girlfriend in this scenario?).

Obviously the HOF pitcher hadn’t seen Bull Durham or he would’ve known to always punch a drunk asshole with your NON-PITCHING hand to avoid injury.