Mar 21, 2014; Phoenix, AZ, USA; MLB and NFL former star Bo Jackson throws out the first pitch before the game between the Chicago White Sox and the Chicago Cubs at Camelback Ranch. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports
13. Bo Jackson
Bo Jackson is on this list not because of objective sabermetric analysis. His career was too short, and too injury filled, to make stat-heads happy. Instead, Bo Jackson is on this list because he’s a freak of nature.
Bo simply oozed greatness every time he stepped into the batter’s box. I’ve never seen a player with better raw tools than Bo Jackson, and that includes Barry Bonds, Ken Griffey Jr., Bryce Harper, and even Mike Trout. Crazy athletic ability allowed Bo Jackson to achieve Paul Bunyon-like feats at the plate.
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Bo hit the longest home run in Kauffman Stadium history, slamming a 475-foot bomb for his first career dinger. Jackson tried to call time out only to realize the umpire had denied his request, and blasted the pitch out of the park. He homered and stole a base on his way to winning the MVP Award at the 1989 All-Star game.
His overall numbers with the KC Royals ended up with a .250/.309/.474 triple slash with 66 doubles, 14 triples, and 109 home runs in five seasons for an OPS+ of 115 (15% above league average). They really don’t tell the tale. To appreciate Bo Jackson, you have to watch the video.
You can see my favorite Bo highlights in a story I wrote about Bo’s 10 most impressive plays as a Royal that I wrote for KC Kingdom in 2014.
Next: The Original No. 6