Wednesday, December 10, 2014

1993 TOPPS FINEST: #165 MO VAUGHN

BEANTOWN BOMBER.


BROKE OUT IN '93 WITH 29 HRs, 101 RBI.



DEFINING THE PLAYER

  • Before David Ortiz, Mo Vaughn served as the portly middle-of-the-order thunder for the Red Sox. Vaughn played eight seasons for the Sox, and while the union ended poorly with sniping between him, the front office and media, he was a three-time All-Star and AL MVP in Boston. He signed what was then a record free-agent contract in 1999 with the Angels, for whom he had his final two 30-plus homer seasons. In his 12-year career, Vaughn hit 328 homers with 1,064 RBI and slashed .293/.383/.523.

DEFINING MOMENT

  • After going 0-for-14 with seven strikeouts in the three-game '95 ALDS flame-out against the Indians, Vaughn earned some payback on Sept. 29, 1998, against those same Indians. In the first inning of Game 1 of the ALDS, he cracked a three-run homer and the Red Sox rolled 11-3. Vaughn slugged a two-run homer in the sixth and finished 3-for-5 with seven RBI.  

DEFINING SEASON

  • Vaughn won the '95 AL MVP by co-leading the league in RBI with 126, hitting 39 homers and slashing .300/.388/.575. But was he more deserving than #16 Albert Belle, who hit 50 homers, 52 doubles, drove in 126 and slashed .317/.401/.690? 

FIVE FINAL FACTS

  1. Played at Seton Hall with #119 Craig Biggio and future Red Sox John Valentin.
  2. After the Red Sox were eliminated in four games of the '98 ALDS, Vaughn signed with the Angels for $80 million over six years.
  3. Stayed in Anaheim for three years, missing the entire '01 season with a ruptured tendon in his left arm, before being traded to the Mets for #78 Kevin Appier in December '01.
  4. Played only two seasons with the Mets before retiring because of chronic knee pain.
  5. Listed in the Mitchell Report for buying HGH in '01 to recover from the arm injury.

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