The Mobile BayBears’ history can be tracked down way back to the 1970s when the original team played in Charlotte. After a few moves, the franchise ended up in Mobile in 1997, where it formed its modern history.
What you may have not known is that Mobile is the hometown of five Hall of Famers. Mobile is actually the third city based on the number of players featured in the Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, New York. Trailing only to New York City and Chicago.
Let’s see who those players are.
Hank Aaron is probably the most legendary player coming out of Mobile. The ballpark where the BayBears used to play proudly holds his name. Nicknamed the Hammer, Hank played in the Majors for 21 years between 1954 and 1976. He played for the Milwaukee Brewers and the Atlanta Braves during his stint.
He is most recognized for his offensive game as he held the MLB record of career home runs for 33 years. He is only the second player in history to have more than 30 home runs in a season at least 15 times.He became a Hall of Famer in 1982.
Billy Williams played 16 seasons in the MLB. He played mostly for the Chicago Cubs, but never managed to reach the postseason with them. His final two years were met with the Oakland Athletics.
He received many accolades during his playing days, including Rookie of the Year and six All-Star appearances. In 1970, Billy had a .322 batting average and made 42 home runs.
Billy was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1987.
Willie McCovey, known as Stretch, was the first baseman and played in the MLB for 22 years. He was most popular for while playing for the San Francisco Giants between 1957 and 1973. He also played for the San Diego Padres and the Oakland Athletics before making a comeback to the Giants and retiring.
Willie is remembered for being a dead-pull line-drive hitter. This prompted many teams to employ a shift against him. During his career, he was a six-time All-Star, three-time home run leader, and MVP in 1969.
He was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1986.
Satchel Paige will be remembered for his longevity in the game. Namely, he was the oldest rookie to ever appear in the MLB when he appeared for the Cleveland Indians at the age of 42. He finished his playing career at 47 years old with the St. Louis Browns and played in two All-Star Games during that period.
Satchel was also the first player coming out of the Negro League to pitch in the World Series in 1948. He also made history by being the first player from the Negro League to be added to the Hall of Fame in 1971.
Ozzie Smith, nicknamed the Wizard due to his defensive plays, appeared in the MLB between 1978 and 1996. He played for two teams while being in the Majors, the San Diego Padres and St. Louis Cardinals.
As a shortstop, he had many records in the league. Ozzie had 8,375 career assists and 1,590 double plays at the position. He also had record appearances in National League with 2,511 career games as a shortstop. He played 13 consecutive seasons as a shortstop and was awarded the Gold Glove Award for his efforts.
He appeared in the All-Star Game 15 times, had 2,460 hits and 580 stolen bases during his career.
Ozzie was added to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 2002.