6.30.17

Legendary Sluggers Of The All-Star Break

Ever since 1985, the league’s top power hitters have come together every year to put on a show for fans during the All-Star break via the home run ball. The rules have changed over time, but the overall purpose of the derby is simple: given the same limits of outs or time, hit more home runs than everyone else.

From Darryl Strawberry to fan favorite Ken Griffey Jr., these legends have consistently put on great performances, showing baseball fans what true home run power looks like. Over the 20+ years that this competition has been televised, ratings have soared, and in 2008 it was named the year’s most highly rated basic cable program.

As this year’s All-Star break approaches, we’re marking the occasion with a list of our favorite throwback participants from the 1980s and 1990s. Feel free to comment below with any of your favorites from this era.

Ken Griffey Jr.

Ken Griffey Jr.: Griffey Jr. participated in a total of eight derbies in his career and came away with three wins, the most of any player in league history. In 1998 and 1999, Griffey Jr. won back-to-back events with 19 and 16 home runs thanks to his smooth left-handed swing. You can also never forget the backward cap Griffey Jr. donned during his at-bats.

Bo Jackson gear

Bo Jackson: Although we will never really know what Jackson could have done if it wasn’t for his hip injury, we can assume that he would have been one of the best professional two-sport athletes of all time. Jackson participated in the 1989 derby in Anaheim, California and hit a total of 32 home runs that season for a total of 141 in his short lived career.

Darryl Strawberry gear

Darryl Strawberry: Throughout his 17-year-career, Strawberry was one of the most feared hitters because of his home run power. He participated in two derbies during his career as a Met, and was a significant factor in his teams’ win in 1986 when he led his team with 4 home runs (The derby had a total of 10 outs at this time, as compared to the modern day 30).

Cal Ripken Jr. gear

Cal Ripken Jr.: Ripken is known as one of the best shortstops, hitters, and personalities to ever be a part of the game, and was the face of the Baltimore Orioles for 20 seasons. The Hall Of Famer and 19-time All-Star, participated in three derbies during his career and, most notably, led his team to a win in 1991 with his 12 bombs.

Mike Piazza gear

Mike Piazza: As a Hall Of Famer Piazza was one of the best offensive catchers to play the game, and hit 427 home runs over his career with five teams. He made two derby appearances, had a career batting average of .308, played above average defensively, and paved the way for modern day offensive-focused catchers in the league.

When taking in the 2017 All-Star festivities, don’t miss the opportunity to rep your favorite retro player right with their batting practice jersey from Mitchell & Ness and the New Era MLB 59Fifty Home Run Derby Cap, available now at eastbay.com.

adidas Originals Yeezy Boost 350 V2 Butter Featured

Yeezys Through The Seasons

Eastbay has been proud to offer the hottest Yeezys. View the timeline of Eastbay’s journey with the popular kicks and check back for new launches.

Vapormax 2 Featured

3 Reasons You Need The New Nike Air VaporMax Flyknit 2

The new Nike Air VaporMax Flyknit 2 is finally here. Here's why you need to know about the game-changing shoe:

3.20 Must Have Featured

Weekly Women’s Must-Haves

Every week we’ll be featuring our top women’s pick and breaking down why it’s essential for your wardrobe. Check back for the hottest clothing and shoes in our Women's Must-Haves blog.

Nike Air Max Featured

A Look Back: Nike Air Max Running in 1998

There have been plenty of legendary Nike Air Max shoes through the years — take a look back with Drew Hammell of @NikeStories.

ASICS HyperGEL Kenzen Featured

ASICS HyperGEL Kenzen: Built For Every Mile And Every Style

Whether you’re a serious runner or just in touch with the latest trends, there’s no doubt you’ll want to rock the new ASICS HyperGEL Kenzen shoes.

Nike Air Max Featured

Top 10 Best Selling Air Max Shoes

March is Nike Air Max Month — let’s celebrate in style! Check out our top Air Max shoes, pick your favorite, and sport them for Air Max Day on March 26.

Nike Air Max 270 Featured

Five Questions You Have About the Nike Air Max 270

The next step forward in Air Max technology is here — the Nike Air Max 270. Here's what you need to know about the game-changing sneaker.

Valentine's Day Featured

Treat Yourself For Valentine’s Day

It’s time for Valentine’s Day! Sure, chocolate and flowers are great, but we’ve got something more fun in mind. Why not be your own valentine, and treat yourself to a sweet new pair of kicks? Check out our top picks.

2.7 Jordan Retro 9

2.7 Release Report: From A New Jordan Retro 9 to the launch of Crossover Culture, Here’s What Is Dropping This Week

The Jordan Retro 9 'City of Flight' is here. So is the AJ XXXII 'Chinese New Year' and the launch of the fresh, new Crossover Culture brand.

5 Crossover Culture Featured

5 Reasons Crossover Culture Should Be Your Next Hoops Shoe

It’s new. It’s fresh. It’s a game changer. Here are 5 reasons you should hop on the Crossover Culture Movement right now.

Crossover Culture Featured

Introducing Crossover Culture: A New Name For Today’s Game

The game has changed. The sneakers should too. That’s the idea behind Crossover Culture, the newest brand in basketball.

1.24 Release Report Jordan Retro 10

1.24 Release Report: New Jordan Retro 10s + fresh Nike signature shoes + the Nike Air Vapormax Plus

From new Jordan Retro 10s to new signature Nike basketball releases to the game-changing Nike Air Vapormax Plus, get the inside scoop on all of this week's releases.

See More