I don’t know if everyone knows this but Frank Thomas my number 8 first baseman and Jeff Bagwell were born on the same day. What a day. Both were great first baseman, ranked right next to each other and only 6 spots apart on my player rating. They could easily of changed places if I had made different decisions.
One thing that surprised me about Bagwell is he played only 15 years. In 2005 a previous season shoulder injury became worse. He played in only 39 games. Ironically after 5 years in the playoffs with Bagwell not making into the World Series Bagwell finally got to play in one. He wasn’t fully functional, and it showed. The World Series was the last games he played.
Bagwell came to spring training in 2006 and couldn’t throw the ball. He then retired.
Frank Thomas was a better hitter than Bagwell, but Bagwell was a better runner and fielder. For a first baseman he had a great overall game.
In 1994 Bagwell was slugging like a mad man. After over 100 games Bagwell was slugging .750 an amazing average. Bagwell already had 39 homeruns and led the league in runs and runs batted in. Unfortunately, he was hit in the hand by a pitch that would probably put him out until the end of the season. However, the next day the baseball season ended because of a disagreement between the owners and players. The players never came back, and the World Series was cancelled for the first and so far, the only time since 1904. The good news for Bagwell was he was recognized for having the best season in the National League up to that point. He was unanimously voted the Most Valuable Player. It was an easy choice. It was the only one Bagwell won in his career.