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Mario-Rijo
01-01-2007, 07:06 PM
Just some baseball things to watch for in 2007! Jr is in the mix!


01/01/2007 2:16 PM ET
2007 could be year of milestone homers
By Jim Street / MLB.com

It's never too early to look ahead to the upcoming season, and at first glance, the 2007 Major League campaign certainly looks like it could be the year of milestone home runs.
That is not to suggest that the single-season home run record will fall, but by the time the final regular-season game is played, there could be an all-time career home run king, at least one new member in the 600-homer club, and possibly five others that reach the 500-homer plateau -- which would be a single-season MLB milestone in itself.

Twenty MLB players have hit at least 500 home runs in their careers, but only three times have two of them reached that magical number during the same season. As of Opening Day, Frank Thomas (487), Jim Thome (472), Manny Ramirez (470) and Alex Rodriguez (464) are knocking at the 500 home run club door. Heck, if Gary Sheffield hits a career-best 45 home runs, he also would enter the 500 home run club.

So buckle up for what could be a highlight-reel kind of season for some high-powered sluggers as they muscle their way toward individual milestones, occasionally sharing the spotlight with less powerful, but equally noteworthy, colleagues.

Mets left-hander Tom Glavine has 290 career victories, teammate Pedro Martinez has struck out 2,998 batters, and Craig Biggio, who has spent his entire career with the Houston Astros, begins the '07 season with 2,930 career hits.

And that's just a few of the milestones that could be reached in 2007.

Let's begin with talking about the long ball, the circuit clout, the dinger. The only times more than one player smacked his 500th home run in the same season were:

Mickey Mantle and Eddie Mathews in 1967.

Harmon Killebrew and Frank Robinson in 1971.

Sammy Sosa and Rafael Palmeiro in 2003.

Many fans would say the mother of all achievements is the home run record that Hank Aaron has held for more than 30 years. At some point during the upcoming season, San Francisco Giants left fielder Barry Bonds will hit the 756th home run of his career and replace Aaron at the top of the all-time list, and the pitcher will become the next Al Downing.

It was Downing, a Los Angeles Dodgers left-hander, who threw the pitch that resulted in Aaron's 715th career home run at Atlanta-Fulton County Stadium on April 8, 1974.

Bonds enters the '07 season with 734 career home runs and has hit at least 22 home runs in 18 of his 21 MLB seasons -- including 26 last season, when he played in 130 games.

If Bonds maintains the same home run pace at age 42 as he did at age 41, he would break Aaron's record during the first week of September.

Bonds already is one of only three players to hit at least 700 home runs. Ken Griffey Jr. begins the season with a chance of becoming the fifth member of the 600-HR club. Junior needs 37 home runs to join Bonds, Aaron, Babe Ruth and Willie Mays in that elite group.

Meanwhile, Sosa says he wants to resume his career after missing the entire 2006 season. Sosa has 588 career home runs.

Other individual milestones on the horizon for 2007:

Barry Bonds
Needs 159 hits to reach 3,000.

Needs to score 42 runs to become the third player in history to reach 2,200, trailing only Rickey Henderson (2,295) and Ty Cobb (2,246).

Needs 13 doubles to become the 14th player in history with at least 600.

Needs 216 total bases to reach the 6,000-mark, passing Babe Ruth and Cobb on the all-time list, and trailing only Aaron (6,856), Stan Musial (6,134) and Mays (6,066).

Needs 70 RBIs to join Aaron (2,297) Ruth (2,217) and Cap Anson (2,076) as the only players with at least 2,000.

Craig Biggio
Needs 70 hits to become the first player since Cal Ripken Jr. and Tony Gwynn in 2001 to reach the 3,000-hit mark while playing for one organization.

Needs 13 doubles to become seventh player with at least 650.

Needs to score 14 runs to reach 1,800.

Needs to be hit by six more pitches to become the all-time leader with 288.

Ken Griffey Jr.
Needs 37 home runs to reach 600.

Needs 88 hits to reach 2,500.

Needs 92 RBIs to reach 1,700.

Frank Thomas
Needs 13 home runs to reach 500.

Needs 21 RBIs to reach 1,600.

Randy Johnson
Needs a 20-win season to reach 300 career wins.

Needs 56 strikeouts to become third pitcher in history with at least 4,600.

Tom Glavine
Needs 10 wins to become 23rd member of the 300-win club and the first since former Atlanta Braves sidekick Greg Maddux in 2005.

Pedro Martinez
Needs two strikeouts to become 15th pitcher in history to reach 3,000.

Mariano Rivera
Needs 12 saves to reach 425 and move into third place on all-time list behind Trevor Hoffman (482) and Lee Smith (478).

GridironGrace
01-01-2007, 10:12 PM
Nice find thank you

StillFunkyB
01-01-2007, 10:35 PM
Sounds like it's going to be an exciting season!

Hopefully the Reds can add to that! :D (I'll stay positive for now)

redsmetz
01-02-2007, 08:08 AM
Ken Griffey Jr.
• Needs 37 home runs to reach 600.

• Needs 88 hits to reach 2,500.

• Needs 92 RBIs to reach 1,700.

I, for one, would be thrilled to see Griffey reach each one of these milestones this season. Hope that hand heals up quickly.

paintmered
01-02-2007, 12:35 PM
37 homers for Griffey is going to a tall order. I really hope he does it this season but I think mid-2008 is a safer timetable for this milestone.

Marc D
01-02-2007, 12:53 PM
Not to be a downer but I'd say those 3 milestones will take whatever is left of his career to reach.

redsmetz
01-02-2007, 01:27 PM
Not to be a downer but I'd say those 3 milestones will take whatever is left of his career to reach.

Oh, you're probably right, I just said it would be great if he could, but I recognize that it will be a tall order.