MLB: Greatest Players Born In Alabama

John LewisSenior Writer IAugust 14, 2008

Over the years baseball has given us some indelible moments and we've been graced with some of the most amazing athletes to ever take the field. These players not only gave us moments to celebrate, but also made history in the process. 

So here's the first installment of the top Major League Baseball players from each state in alphabetical order starting with the Cotton State - Alabama.

First up is perhaps the greatest baseball player to ever live!

Hank Aaron

Born in Mobile, Aaron played 23 years and will always be known for passing Babe Ruth for the most home runs in a career. He held this record for 33 years before moving over for Barry Bonds last year.

He is the only player to hit 30 or more home runs in a season at least 15 times and is one of only four players to have at least 17 seasons with 150 or more hits.   Aaron holds the record for the most career RBI with 2,297, the most extra base hits with 1,477 and the most career total bases with 6,856. This list of accolades keeps going and going.

Willie Mays

Born in Fairfield, the "Say Hey Kid" played 22 seasons and is considered by some to be the best athlete in baseball history.  Mays is the only Major League player to have hit a home run in every inning from the 1st through the 16th. He finished his career with a record 22 extra-inning home runs and is one of three NL players to have eight consecutive 100-RBI seasons.

He finished his career with 660 HRs, 1,903 RBI, 3,283 hits and a .302 batting average, 12 gold gloves and two MVP awards. Mays is also famous for "The Catch" that saw him haul in a shot to straight away center field on the warning track by Vic Wertz in the 1954 World Series. Few remember that center field in the Polo Grounds was 483 feet.

Willie McCovey

Born in Mobile, McCovey hit 521 HRs in 22 Major League seasons.  He made his big league debut on July 30, 1959 and promptly went 4-4 against Robin Roberts.  He went on the win the NL Rookie of the Year award having only played 52 games.

In those 52 games he hit 13 HRs, drove in 38 base runners and hit .354.  He was voted to six All-Star games, won the 1969 MVP award and the 1977 NL Comeback Player of the Year award.

Early Wynn

Born in Hartford, Early is right, he broke into the league at the age of 19 making his debut on September 13, 1939.  That day would also prove important because his career ended on that day in 1963.  But between that time he won 300 games.

Wynn won 17 or more games 10 times and pitched in over 40 games in a season four times. Always known for his durability, Wynn had nearly 300 complete games and even came in as a closer and had 15 saves.     

Satchel Paige

Born in Mobile, his career stats and age were always a mystery, but what wasn't was his greatness.  His career began in the mid 1920's and ended in 1965.  Paige played for 12 different Negro League teams before making his Major League debut in July of 1948.

According to records, Paige was 42 years old at the time of his debut and naturally became the oldest player to debut in the majors. He finished his career 28-31, a 3.29 ERA and 288 strikeouts.     

Billy Williams

Born in Whistler, sweet swinging Billy played 16 seasons for the Chicago Cubs and two with the Oakland Athletics.  During his 18 years he hit 426 HRs, 1,475 RBI, 2,711 hits and batted .290.  He was on a talented Cubs team with Ernie Banks, Ferguson Jenkins and Ron Santo but never played in the post season.

Williams' best season came in 1972 when he led the National League in batting average at .333, hit 37 HRs and had 122 RBI.  That year he also posted a .606 slugging percentage and finished second in the MVP race.

Heinie Manush

Born in Tuscumbia, Manush played 17 seasons in the Major Leagues and finished with a .330 batting average, 2,524 hits, 1,183 RBI, 491 doubles and 160 triples. He batted .378 on separate seasons in which he finished fifth and second in the MVP races.

He also finished third in the MVP voting in back-to-back for the Washington Senators and he only struck out 345 times during his career.  Just to put that number in perspective that's only 20.2 K's per season.       

Rudy York

Born in Ragland, York played 13 seasons with four different teams.  According to his coaches, York was awful in the field as they tried to find a position for him.  Before the designated hitter days, York finally settled in at first bases.

A beast with the bat he hit 277 HRs including 12 grand slams.  He also drove in 1,152 runs and batted .275.  His best season came in 1943 when he hit 34 HRs had 118 RBI, 11 triples and finished third in the MVP voting.    

Bo Jackson

Born in Bessemer, Bo knows sports having played both football and baseball professionally.  He won the 1985 Heisman Trophy at Auburn and suited up as running back for the Los Angeles Raiders and left field for the Kansas City Royals.

Jackson of course was the first athlete to be named an All-Star in two different sports.  His career was cut short by a hip injury with the Raiders and he finished with 2,782 rushing yards and a 5.4 yards per carry average.  On the baseball diamond he hit 141 HRs and drove in 415 runs.

These are the greatest baseball players to come from the Heart of Dixie.


    Morrison: 'You Can't Fix Stupid' Yankees Fans

    MLB logo

    Morrison: 'You Can't Fix Stupid' Yankees Fans

    Zach Miller
    via North Jersey

    Justus Sheffield's Hot Start Earns Praise from High Up

    New York Yankees logo
    New York Yankees

    Justus Sheffield's Hot Start Earns Praise from High Up

    Beltre Placed on 10-Day DL with Hamstring Strain

    MLB logo

    Beltre Placed on 10-Day DL with Hamstring Strain

    Steve Adams
    via MLB Trade Rumors

    Tigers OF Hit in Nuts Then Hits HR

    MLB logo

    Tigers OF Hit in Nuts Then Hits HR

    Andrew Joseph
    via For The Win