Year In Review : 1998 National League
Off the field...
Senator John Glenn blasted off for the second time at age seventy-seven to participate in a study of the effects of weightlessness and space stress on the elderly. The veteran astronaut had no difficulties performing his duties aboard the Space Shuttle and returned to earth with flying colors.
President Bill Clinton was accused of having improper relations with a young, White House intern. Despite denying the allegations, a thorough investigation is conducted and the house proposes the possibility of impeachment.
Seventy-six million people tuned in to view the last installment of a "show about nothing" as Seinfeld broadcasted its farewell performance. The series is still the most widely viewed sitcom ever in syndication and has made creator Jerry Seinfeld one of the wealthiest royalty recipients in the history of television.
In the American League...
The Oakland Athletics Rickey Henderson scored the 2,000th run of his career in the A's 15-6 loss to the Cleveland Indians. In doing so, he joined Ty Cobb, Hank Aaron, Babe Ruth, Pete Rose, and Willie Mays as the only players to reach the milestone.
Cal Ripken started his 2,500th consecutive game as the Baltimore Orioles defeated the Oakland A's, 8-2. In perspective, the subsequent twenty-two longest active streaks (combined) add up to less than the "Iron Man's" own total.
Manager Joe Torre's Yankees outplayed the 1927 team and finished the season with an astonishing one hundred, fourteen regular-season wins and eleven postseason victories. The Bombers win column represented the most "Ws" by any team in one hundred, twenty-three years of Major League baseball.
In the National League...
Montreal Expos skipper Felipe Alou tallied his 521st career-win as manager thanks to veteran pitcher Dustin Hermanson who was also the starter in Alou's 400th, 450th, and 500th wins.
On September 8th, St. Louis Cardinal Mark McGwire topped Roger Maris' single-season home run mark by slugging his sixty-second of the year off the Chicago Cubs' Steve Trachsel. Fittingly, Sammy Sosa, McGwire's closest running mate in the race to break sixty-one, was in attendance on the field.
San Francisco Giant Barry Bonds hit his 400th home run, off the Florida Marlins' Kirt Ojala and became the first player in Major League history to boast four-hundred homeruns and four-hundred steals in a career.
Around the league...
Chicago Cubs broadcaster Harry Caray died at the age of eighty-four, four days after collapsing at a Valentine's Day dinner. The Wrigley Field icon, known best for leading the fans in the traditional rendition of "Take Me Out to the Ballgame" left behind countless memories from a career that spanned half a century.
In an effort to secure financial stability, the Cleveland Indians requested permission from the Securities and Exchange Commission to sell four million shares of the team to the public.
Congress finally passed a bill that removed part of baseball's seventy-six year antitrust exemption. The groundbreaking citation was supported by both the owners and the players union and was later signed by President Bill Clinton.
In November, Yankee and A's icon Jim "Catfish" Hunter was diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, an ultimately fatal neurological condition better known as "Lou Gehrig's disease."