Long Gone Summer (2020) Movie Script

[upbeat music]
[birds chirping]
So, this is McGwire's, let
me see what I've got here.
So, I put them in some kind of
chronological order for you.
61, 63, 63, okay.
I think in advance
I had bought 69.
I had bought, uh, Sammy
Sosa's 33rd home run
which was, again,
a record-setting ball,
which was the 20th
home run he hit in June
that put him into that race.
And then I had bought Mark
McGwire's first home run
that he hit on opening day.
This is the big boy.
That's the 70.
Been scuffed up a little bit
'cause it got hit 400 feet.
[Interviewer] What did
you end up paying for 70?
The final bid was $2.7 million,
but with tax and license,
because they have their fee,
it ended up being
a hair over $3 million.
If Wayne Gretzky sets
a goal-scored record, fwoop!
He puts the puck
in the net, time!
And they go get the puck
and they give it to Wayne.
You know, Michael Jordan
scores the most point, time!
Somebody gets the
most touchdowns, time!
You hit that home run,
and you set any kind of
record with a home run,
it could be a guy
in the bleacher,
one of the bleacher bums
going, "I've got the ball!"
This ball right here is history.
You're in the middle
of that story.
That ball puts you in
the middle of that story.
[gentle music]
[Announcer] Ladies
and gentlemen,
the "Bambino," Babe Ruth!
[audience cheering]
[Announcer 2] So, Babe has done it,
60 home runs in one season,
one of the greatest
records in baseball.
[Announcer 3] Here comes Roger Maris.
Fastball hit deep to right!
This could be it!
Way back there!
[audience cheering]
[Announcer 4] McGwire waits.
Here's the pitch.
Swing and a long one to left.
Back at the track,
I'll be darned!
He did it again!
I'll be darned!
[Announcer 5] Swung on,
belted deep toward left.
Back to the track!
And the ball is
long gone for Sosa!
[audience cheering and applauding]
[Announcer 7] Deep to right field.
Way back there, and it is gone!
Sammy Sosa becomes the
Cubs' single-season
all-time home run hitter.
A step closer to Major
League Baseball history.
[Announcer 8] Swing, and a long one!
He got a pitch up in the zone,
and he hit that
classic high drive.
[Announcer 8] Man,
relish it, folks, relish it.
Can you believe it?
[Interviewer] You're all set?
I feel really raspy right now.
It's like right in the middle.
-All right, cool.
-But I feel great.
[Crew] All right,
Sammy Sosa, take 2.
I'm ready, ready for the fight.
[audience cheering]
[upbeat organ music]
[Announcer] Glad you're with us as we
open up the 1998 regular season.
[audience cheering]
Everybody picking Mark
McGwire and/or Ken Griffey Jr.
to make that assault on
Roger Maris' home run record.
After the misery of 1994,
when baseball in my opinion
was at its lowest point,
Major League Baseball, the
players and the owners,
had not truly healed the
wounds after the '94 strike.
On the field of dreams,
a giant anticlimax.
Yes, the baseball
season is over.
Baseball officially
struck out yesterday,
owners canceling the
rest of the '94 season.
I think it's too bad
that in 90 years,
this is the first World Series
that won't be happening.
And I'm very, very upset with
the owners and players both,
they're not compromising.
[Man] You got this bunch of
millionaires who are spoiled.
-See, but that's everybody.
-[Man] I mean the players.
Everybody, they're
all rich millionaires.
It's just a few 100 folks
trying to figure out
how to divide nearly $2 billion.
They ought to be able
to figure that out
in time for the rest of America
to enjoy this baseball season.
So many fans'
perceptions of the game
had been soured by
this bitter strike.
It was America's game.
Now it's the bank's game.
We like football better now.
When they began
playing again in '95,
there were considerable
drops in attendance.
There were people who said,
"I'll never watch
another baseball game."
What was going to
bring those fans back
that had lost interest?
People at that time were
desperate for a feel-good story.
And this seemed to be
this feel-good story.
[Reporter] What are you
most looking forward to here
in this Cardinals season?
We're all here to
see Mark McGwire.
-McGwire will do it.
-It's gonna be McGwire, huh?
McGwire. Three home
runs today, they say,
[Mike Bush] Records in baseball matter.
You know, if you ask 100 people,
"Who holds the record for
most receptions in the NFL?"
I'm not sure how many people
could answer that question.
But a whole bunch of people
could answer the question,
"Who holds the record
for home runs?"
And they certainly could
back then, Roger Maris, 61.
The Maris record was hallowed ground,
for a time thought to be unapproachable.
People get to 50
every now and then.
50-- You know, 50 is a long way from 61.
People didn't just want
to see the record broken.
They wanted it to be someone
they felt was worthy.
[upbeat music]
[T.J. Quinn] McGwire? Great.
He's larger-than-life.
It's a myth.
This is a mythic record.
He had muscles in his
forearms and his back
that you didn't see
in other people.
You were in awe of him.
[Bernie] There was a great
buzz of anticipation.
People were talking about
it as '97 came to a close
because McGwire ended
up with 58 home runs.
If he can get 58, what
are we in for in '98?
You just don't know when
you're gonna hit a home run.
Obviously, it takes the pitcher.
It takes a pitch.
It takes a good swing.
There's no guarantees
that I was gonna
center a baseball
and hit it out of the ballpark.
[audience cheering]
[Announcer] Casey at the bat.
[Announcer] Well, the folks can get
their money's worth right here,
couldn't they, Jack?
[Announcer] Bases loaded, two out.
The pitch to McGwire...
Swing, and a high
fly ball into left.
That ball carries to the track.
Might leave the park!
He did it!
A grand slam, and
it's four to nothing.
McGwire with number one.
[audience cheering]
[Announcer] What a start.
To me, the most important,
most fascinating parts
of his '98 story is the
beginning and the end.
It's important because
not often remembered
or mentioned how the pressure,
to whatever extent he
was gonna acknowledge it,
was there from the first day.
[Mark] It's a tough record to break.
I mean, that's all
the way from day one
to the end of the season.
It's a tough thing to do.
Um, if it was easy to do,
it would have been
broken a long time ago.
I don't know what
year it started,
but I would like,
I would set goals,
and I would write
down these numbers
of what I wanted to accomplish.
And I would put it in my safe
in my home in
Southern California,
and I wouldn't look at it
until the season's over with.
I had in my mind what I
knew I had to average.
I had to average over
10 home runs a month,
which is hard to do.
But I really thought
that that could be done.
Well, I think we were as close
as we can be, family wise.
I-I never knew he had made that
list and had it in his safe.
I never knew that
till right now.
But that's another
measure of his awareness,
of his potential,
the expectations,
and the reality.
And then he gets
off to that start.
[Announcer] From the stretch.
The pitch to Mark McGwire.
Swing, and a long one!
Calling air-traffic control!
Calling air-traffic control!
A three-run homer for McGwire!
He is amazing,
dazzling, remarkable.
What a guy he's been
for the Cardinals.
He was ready to go.
He comes out of the gate
just boom, boom, boom.
[Announcer] Swing,
and a long one to center field.
Look at this one sail!
His third home run of the night.
I played with a lot of guys that had pop,
that could hit the ball hard.
What was amazing is his swing
was so short and compact.
And so it wasn't
just about power.
He had the bat
speed to go with it.
[Announcer] They love
McGwire here in St. Louis.
[audience cheering]
Most of the home runs he
hit were gargantuan shots.
It was like video-game
stuff, you know,
where you hit the magic load.
[Announcer] There she goes, baby.
Look at this thing fly!
Upper-deck bomb,
three-run, home run,
a monster shot over
the Bud Light sign.
An upper-deck shot at
the old Busch Stadium?
That was a shot.
He was launching 'em.
[audience cheering]
[Announcer] McGwire waits.
Swings, and hits
it to deep center.
Looks like it's
gonna leave the park.
Wow, what a long
home run that was.
Got everybody so excited,
but the question was gonna
be how he maintains it.
[Announcer] A three-run
home run by McGwire,
his second home
run of the night.
He hit that one
off the scoreboard.
[Announcer] Seven homers
in his last five games,
and get out the calculators.
He's is on 79 home run,
200 RBI pace.
[upbeat music]
[siren wailing]
[George] The Cubs in the mid-'90s
were sort of
militantly mediocre.
I mean, some of us have been
fans since the late '40s.
The '90s were almost salad
days, they were so good.
The '90s belonged to the
Bulls and Michael Jordan.
They certainly hogged
the headlines in Chicago.
In 1997, I looked
at the schedule,
and I said, "Oh, the Cubs
are going to be terrible."
And so I announced that I'm
gonna offer 45-cent draft beers
until the Cubs would
win their first game,
thinking that they might
actually set a record.
[Announcer] Bouncing ball to short.
Dunston throws.
Whoa! A wild throw.
[Announcer] Here comes
Brian McCrae, long run.
Can't get it. It gets away.
And the losing streak is 14.
Cubs lose again.
Oh, Harry Caray sold 5,000
beers and 10,000 beers.
We got up to 50,000
45 cent beers sold.
All the Cub fans
are trying to get
that one Budweiser from Harry.
Harry was the ideal broadcaster
and the face of the franchise
more than any player.
Harry enjoyed the game.
He was everyman
with a microphone.
What made my grandfather
so successful
was even though the
team wasn't good,
he sold fans on the idea of
Wrigley Field as a palace.
You've got to come.
Have a great time.
You can't beat fun
at the old ballpark.
It's one, two, three
Strikes you're out
At the old ballgame
-[audience cheering]
[Announcer] On February
18th, the Cubs organization,
the city of Chicago,
and the sport of baseball
experienced the
loss of a legend.
Harry Caray spent 16...
I didn't know my grandfather very well,
and he was very excited that he and I
were gonna get to be
not just colleagues
but grandfather and grandson.
This is a guy that watched
Jackie Robinson break in.
This is a guy that saw every
at bat of Stan Musial's career.
He knew everything and
knew everyone in the game,
and I never really
got the opportunity
to absorb that
baseball encyclopedia.
And to have that taken away
so suddenly was heartbreaking.
The thought of how that
season evolved was amazing
because it starts out
on such a sad note.
No one really thought the Cubs
were gonna be a story in '98.
I wasn't thinking it
was gonna be anything
more than a mediocre Cubs
team with Kerry Wood.
He was a phenom.
All through spring training
we talked about him.
My first year in
the big leagues,
getting called up as a rookie,
being 20 years old and just
trying to take it all in.
[Announcer] He changes speeds.
Bell strikes out.
Oh, my goodness.
The amount of attention, you know,
that was the biggest adjustment
for me, coming in, a young kid that
was quiet and kind of just wanted
to stay to himself.
-[Announcer] 14!
-[audience cheering]
20 strikeouts!
He ties the Major League record!
It was all Wood.
I mean, that's all we were thinking was,
"Okay, we'll just
write about him
the rest of the year."
You want to cover a phenom,
and he certainly was one.
And, really, Sammy was
kind of an afterthought at that point.
[audience yelling]
You're gonna go
in for Jankowski.
You're gonna go in for Cesar.
All right.
If they do hit, and they get on,
you will be running
for him, okay?
[Interviewer] What's
baseball mean to you?
It's in my blood.
It's my life.
The crew of kids that I grew
up with, that's all we did.
Friends' houses playing
Nerf-ball, baseball,
tennis-ball baseball.
We were just being kids,
having a great time.
[upbeat music]
[Mark] I started playing
baseball with a team.
I think I was nine
or 10, I believe.
You know, I was a pitcher.
That's all I did.
I mean, I hit like
every kid hit.
My first at bat in Little
League was a home run.
I always had the
knack to doing that.
When I went to SC,
I went to SC as a pitcher.
I loved just being on the mound.
That's the one
player on that field
that controls the
game, basically.
The game doesn't do anything
until the pitcher
throws the baseball.
Marcel Lachemann was
our pitching coach.
And he said, "Hey, why don't
you go see this McGwire guy?"
And I go, "Why? I thought
he was a pitcher."
And he goes, "Yeah, he can
swing the bat a little bit, too.
Just go take a look at him."
[bat cracks]
[Ron] He became very aware
of what pitches he hit well
and what pitches
he didn't hit well.
He learned how to pull the ball.
He learned how to hunt the pitch
that was his pitch to hit.
Pitchers would just
make that little mistake
out over the plate, and he
hits it out of the ballpark.
And Rod Dedeaux says,
"I like this three-run homer
better than you pitching.
So, I want you to play
first base all the time."
I broke the USC home run record.
I led the nation in
home runs with 32.
I went off.
Got invited to go try out
for the Pan American team,
and then I played
for the Olympic team.
[Interviewer] Did you
aim to hit home runs
or did you just make contact
and that's what happened?
Just see ball, hit ball.
You dream about getting
to the big leagues,
and then, all of a sudden...
[Reporter] The 6'5", 215-pound
first baseman out of USC,
McGwire has hit the big time.
This was his 13th
blast of the year,
coming off the Yankees'
Dennis Rasmussen
to give him the lead in the
American League in home runs.
[McGwire] My rookie year,
it was a crazy year.
33 home runs the first
half of the season.
[Announcer] Oh, did
he get enough of it?
He did! Holy cow!
[upbeat music]
[Announcer] And that one may be it.
Way back and
there's your record!
With his Major
League rookie record.
I mean, 49 home runs.
Oakland in those days,
the air is real thick.
You don't hit home runs there.
[Announcer] And there it goes.
And this game is tied.
[audience cheering]
[Announcer] Yeah, not only
does it tie the ballgame up,
but it's a new
Oakland team record.
[Dave] Mark, he would catch a ball,
and it would go a long, long ways.
He had a real knack
for taking the ball inside
and keeping it fair.
The next thing you
know, 49 home runs later
and rookie of the year.
It's something that
you always dream about.
Just a dream come true.
[audience cheering]
[Announcer] A line drive up the alley
in left center field.
This one is gonna be gone!
-Home run, McGwire.
-Congratulations, man, nice game.
Thanks, buddy.
[Announcer] And the A's
are the world champions.
They were the best team in baseball
and a franchise that had a record
of being somewhat
rowdy and colorful.
[Announcer] McGwire
wants to get something,
and he's hit in the helmet.
Now he's going to the mound!
He's after Allen.
Allen doesn't want it...
He had a teammate named Canseco.
And the Bash Brothers were
a brand at that point.
A lot of excitement
swirled around him.
[audience cheering]
This year, if-- When that scout that we,
oh, God, I'm not thinking today.
This is all on tape too.
This is ridiculous.
What am I doing here right now?
It's so weird, like to be
singled out in a team sport.
Nobody ever talked
about it like that.
[LaRussa] Mark's a real private guy.
He's a back-of-the-room guy
who's laughing in the back.
He doesn't want to be the
face of the franchise.
[Mark] I got divorced '88.
I mean, I lived, sleeped,
and ate baseball.
Just that was my
life, and it was like,
"I'm not gonna let anything
or anybody get in the way
of what I want to
try to accomplish."
What did I want to
try to accomplish?
I had no idea.
I just wanted to be successful.
[Announcer] And McGwire
may have just tied it.
First pitch, see you later!
[Mark] Some guys, they
don't want to admit
that they're home run hitters.
It's okay. It's like--
And it took me a time to
really come to grasp with it.
But I was a fly-ball, home
run hitter, it's pure as that.
[bat cracks]
As a kid, you want to
be a complete player.
Ken Griffey was a complete player.
Average, home runs, RBIs,
speed, stolen bases,
just a five-tool guy.
[audience cheering]
[Announcer] There it goes.
There's a moon scraper!
Those are the things that you try
to push yourself in the off-season.
I want to try to be like that.
[audience cheering]
[Announcer] And belted
deep to right field.
Upper-deck time!
Fly away!
Another masterpiece of beauty
from the swing of Ken Griffey Jr.
Ken Griffey Jr. was the
most electrifying player
that I saw at the time.
He could do it all.
Junior seemed like
the chosen one.
You know, that would make sense.
Not only is it possible,
it feels like it
really could happen.
[Announcer] They're in
a perfect situation,
meaning McGwire and
especially Griffey.
If they can stay healthy,
I expect one of those guys
to hit 60 home runs.
[Sammy Sosa] What is meant to
be is meant to be.
If it were meant to be Griffey,
it would have been Griffey.
But God picked me.
[upbeat music]
[Sammy Sosa] Chicago is very cold.
And I'm one of the worst hitters
in the cold weather, period.
When it start to
get warm, that's me.
[Announcer] Sammy ahead,
run ball, no strikes.
He came in hitting 15 homers.
Swung on, belted
deep toward left!
Back to the track and the wall!
It's long gone for Sosa!
And that was a line-drive
rocket out of the ballpark.
[Announcer] One thing he's
doing different this year,
he's batting for a
much-higher batting average.
Starting to go to right
field quite a bit.
[audience cheering]
[Announcer] That one hit
well to right center.
Grissom back. Goodnight now.
Oh, my goodness.
Into the stratosphere,
Sosa's third of the night.
[Sammy] I never satisfied.
Always was hungry.
I'm not gonna give
it up to the pitcher.
He got to come.
He got to pitch me.
[Announcer] Sammy hits it a ton!
Deep toward right!
She's gonna be long gone!
He was driving the
ball to right field,
getting good pitches to hit,
laying off bad
pitches, and, you know,
the ball jumps off his bat.
He really had a month
that nobody's ever had.
[Announcer] The 21st
time in 22 games
Sammy Sosa has
left the ballpark.
It was unbelievable at times
to see what he was doing,
because it wasn't like he was
doing it against the last guy
out of the pen that was throwing
cookies down the middle.
He was hitting breaking
balls off the plate
opposite field, 15 rows deep.
He was turning on fastballs.
You know, at some point, we're sitting
in the dugout, going, "What?"
He's hitting everything.
[Announcer] Sosa sends a
drive deep toward right!
Oh, baby, long gone!
One-run game.
[Announcer] The man has
worked hard his entire career
and finally getting all the
recognition he deserves.
I've been hitting
over 30 home run,
and I've been playing
good all the time,
and this is the year
that everything together.
[Reporter] Sosa isn't just hot.
He isn't just sizzling.
Sosa, he might just
swell up and explode
walking into the ballpark.
When we finish the game, we
go home and watching ESPN.
You know, that was the
little thing to motivate me.
You know, let me see
if they show me today.
Sometimes they don't.
I had to continue hitting
'cause if you're not,
they're not gonna mention me.
[Announcer] Three
balls, two strikes.
High drive, deep left field.
That's Sosa's 20th in June.
[audience cheering]
[Announcer] 20 home runs for
Sosa this month.
[Announcer] Mark who?
Sammy Sosa hot on his tail.
[Reporter] Sosa looking for
that Major League record, and he got it!
Unbelievable, 20th homer
in the month of June,
extending his record
for one month.
He hit a homer in his first
at bat of the month, June 1st,
and in his last, June 30th.
McGwire, Sosa, Griffey,
three fattest home run
hitters in the bigs.
Each of them went
yard on Tuesday night.
[Interviewer] Did you have
any impressions about Sammy
prior to June of 1998?
I didn't really. Uh...
I knew he played in our league,
but I didn't really
know anything about him.
Didn't know anything
about Sammy Sosa
until he hit 20
home runs in June.
Mark, he was everything.
The golden boy, let's say.
But the only thing that
I guess I have more
that he don't have
was my charisma.
I was just happy to be there.
[people chattering]
[camera shutter clicking]
[Sammy Sosa] I remember when I
was in my country,
in San Pedro de
Macoris, my little town,
I was a shoeshine boy.
I was, you know, just
happy just to play
with the kid in the street.
I was hungry to be somebody,
to get my family
out of that town.
[upbeat music]
[people chattering]
[Sammy Sosa] I got signed when
I was 16 years old.
I signed with the
Texas Rangers in 1985.
[Announcer] Sammy
had numbers at Tulsa
of almost .300, seven homers,
31 RBIs, stole 16 bases.
And he rips one into left field.
[Sammy Sosa] I was a first-stringer.
When we're coming from
the Dominican Republic,
we have the mentality that
we're not coming here to walk.
We're coming here to hit.
I said, "If I'm gonna
make it, I'm gonna make it
with everything that I have."
"I'm not gonna change."
And then, when I got
trade to Chicago Cubs,
for me it was one opportunity
that I was looking for.
[Announcer] And there goes Sosa.
Pitch taken.
Throw down to second,
and there it is.
Sammy Sosa becomes the first
Cub in franchise history
to have 30 or more stolen
bases, 30 or more home runs
in the same season.
[Sammy Sosa] Chicago was incredible.
Nobody know who I was and
I made my name in Chicago.
That's the city
that I owe my life.
[Announcer] Here comes Sammy.
[audience cheering]
[Rebecca] Sammy was excited
about being there.
His favorite thing
is fun and joking
and not being so serious.
People loved it.
He always knew where
the camera was.
And so, if he's in the dugout
after hitting a home run,
he's blowing kisses
to his mother, to fans.
This guy was an enormously
talented player.
He was so quick and so
lithe and so athletic.
[Announcer] Drives
a drive way back!
It might be!
Cubs win! Cubs win!
Cubs win!
Holy cow!
He hit it a mile!
[Rebecca] At that point, Sammy had
gotten more into a routine
of eating better and
developing his muscles
and weight training.
Hitting the home runs, I think,
he became more
conscious of power
and what the power can do
um, because the fans react to that.
They love it.
[Announcer] Folks,
what's going on here
is unprecedented in baseball.
Never before has anybody set
any baseball city on fire
like McGwire's
done in St. Louis.
Everything he does, they cheer.
They cheer him when
he comes to the plate,
when he hits home runs,
when he strikes out,
when he goes back to the dugout.
They come to watch him,
and he doesn't disappoint.
[Bob Costas] KMOX had a lot to do
with making generations
of Cardinal fans at a time
when baseball on the radio
was really the whole deal.
KMOX is a 50,000-watt station,
smack-dab in the
middle of the country,
with enough reach
that on a given night,
it could be heard in
some 40 different states
and certainly heard
throughout the Midwest
and portions of the
South and the Southwest.
And on top of it, they had
great and compelling announcers,
most specifically Jack Buck.
Swing, and a high fly
ball to deep left.
It's gonna go!
41, 41 for McGwire.
Jack Buck taught
baseball lessons
on the radio every single day.
So, people understood the
game, and they loved the game,
and it's in the fabric
of the community.
Scorecard, media guide, get
your Cardinal magazine here.
Step right up!
[Interviewer] What did you
know about St. Louis in '97?
To be quite honest
with you, not much.
I mean, I just knew it was
just a great baseball town,
but you've never been there,
so you never get to experience it.
[Announcer] Tonight, Mark McGwire
makes his National League
and St. Louis Cardinal debut
against the
Philadelphia Phillies.
Whenever you trade for someone
who's on the last
year of his contract,
it's kind of tricky because
you don't want to give up
you know, half your farm system,
and then, you know, maybe the
player goes to free agency
and signs someplace else, and
you've had him for two months.
I grew up going to Angel games.
I made it sort of vocal.
I mean, it'd be awesome
to play your hometown.
I think everybody
thought he was a rental.
I don't think many people
thought that Mark McGwire
was going to make
St. Louis his home.
I remember writing
a column saying,
"Oh, come on, he
already says he wants
to become a free agent.
He already told you up front."
So, I just thought, you
know, this is really cruel.
You're getting this Goliath
who's gonna hit home runs,
and everyone's
gonna get excited,
and then he's gonna walk away.
[Jenifer] He showed up at Busch
Stadium on August 8th,
which was the first home game
he'd have here in St. Louis.
He was four for
43 at that point.
Mark McGwire, and he goes...
[blows raspberry]
you know, he just fizzles.
[Announcer] Curve
ball, swing and a miss.
[Mark] Gosh, I was in a
horrendous slump.
What was St. Louis thinking?
You know, it's like they
trade for Mark McGwire,
and it's like, "This
guy is not very good."
Um, but, again, I was
thinking that, too.
[Announcer] And here
comes Mark McGwire.
And he's getting a
standing ovation.
[audience cheering]
I'm like standing ovation?
I was like, "Do they realize
that I'm, like two for 28?"
You don't get a standing
ovation for going two for 28.
Second at bat, he came up.
Got another standing ovation.
[Announcer] There it goes!
Is it fair?
Home run, Mark McGwire!
[audience cheering]
It wasn't long that
really realized like,
"This is too good to be true.
I mean, I could really
imagine playing here."
[Announcer] There it is! He did it!
-[audience cheering]
-[upbeat music]
[Announcer] And that one's
stung deep to left center.
Dunwoody back, turning around.
That baby is gone.
For me, watching those
two guys go toe-to-toe,
it was, it was poetry.
I mean, it was
Chicago, St. Louis,
two arch rivals in baseball.
[Announcer] See you later!
[Chip Karay] And Mark McGwire,
a good-looking California kid,
Sammy Sosa, the
former shoeshine kid
from the Dominican Republic.
I mean, all those differences
and rivalries were on display.
You couldn't write a
better script, man.
You got two guys, they're
both in the National League,
both in the same division,
going back and forth.
[Announcer] It ain't coming back!
Watch this thing sail
into the second deck.
[Announcer 2] Breaking
ball, swung on,
belted deep toward center.
Back to the track!
At the wall.
It's long gone, and
the Cubs have the lead!
We got Mark. They got Sammy.
You know, it's like
two heavyweight boxers.
[Announcer] And a long
one into right center.
Get out! Get out!
Number 45!
He has done it again.
[audience cheering]
One of the little hallmarks
of an intelligent fan base
is how they react to a fly ball.
When the ball goes in the air,
they immediately
look at the outfield.
You'll know within a
second whether or not
that ball is gonna be caught.
And all of a sudden, Cardinals fans were
doing something
I'd never seen before.
They're screaming until
the ball is caught,
which means they're
just watching the ball.
They kind of lost their minds.
They went from really
understanding small and strategy
to everyone going
out of their minds
anytime the ball was
hit up in the air.
[Tim Forneris] The stadium would open
like two hours before
for the fans to come in
and watch batting practice.
And batting practice was a show.
[Reporter] We interrupt
this SportsCenter
for a special report.
Mark McGwire is about to
get in the batting cage.
[audience cheering]
I mean, he would hit
bombs, one after another.
[Man] He's hitting the jumbotron.
People would just go crazy.
They brought their gloves.
They were ready to catch 'em.
You'd have 5,000 people
just at batting practice
just to see him hit.
[audience cheering]
[Tim Forneris] I think at the All-Star
break, all the way through July,
people really kind of thought
he might have a
chance at this record
because he had stayed healthy,
and the numbers were
starting to look good.
[Reporter] Mark, a
night like tonight
obviously gets the fans
and us, the media,
talking about the record.
Do you let that sink
into your head at all?
Till somebody gets
to 50 by September,
then it's a legitimate
thing to talk about.
But right now I
don't think there is.
I think when you
look at records,
it's not can the player do it,
but can they withstand the
pressure that comes with it?
Lots of people have
been ahead of Babe Ruth
or Roger Maris' pace to a
certain point in the season.
Reggie Jackson had 37 home runs
at the All-Star break in 1969.
Baseball is the most
difficult marathon
that there is in sports.
It's 162 games in 185 days.
Think about that.
It's every day.
You foul a ball off your
shin at 95 miles an hour,
you stay in the game,
you play the next day,
you grind it out.
People don't really realize
the first half's easy
because you're fresh.
And in baseball, they call
it the dog days of summer.
And you're wore out.
[Mark] You mentally never can think
that you've got it whipped.
There are baseball gods,
and those baseball
gods will come down,
and they'll bite you
right in the butt.
[soft guitar music]
[Mark] Just after the second,
third week of July,
and then first part of August,
that was always my down time
of year for some reason.
I don't know, maybe it was the travel,
maybe it was the heat,
but you're gonna
have those months
where you're just
gonna just struggle.
My '91 season, which
was horrendous,
it was the first time
that I really failed
for a long period of time.
And then, '93, '94,
I have injuries.
[Announcer] See Mark McGwire
on the A's bench.
McGwire's been out since
May with a bad heel.
[Mark] The foot injury,
plantar fasciitis,
where the sheath that holds up
your arch is basically torn.
Any time you push off,
it feels like somebody's
taking a knife
and putting it right
through your heel.
[Announcer] And La Russa heard
some people booing McGwire
earlier on the home
stand on a ground ball.
You know, McGwire really is
not going to be able to run
full-bore for a while.
We're always taught
to play through pain.
If you can't make
the lineup that day
because of the little
aches and pains,
you never hear the end of it.
I decided to see a psychologist
just to try to figure
out who I am as a person.
And so I started peeling all
these layers of onion off,
and as my psychologist
would say,
it just sort of overlapped into,
how can I take that and move
it into my mind as an athlete?
He became a guy who
could really zero in,
focus, and block out.
[upbeat music]
[Announcer] Sammy Sosa.
High to left field.
Bonds is backpedaling.
He's at the wall.
This guy named Sosa in Chicago
kind of raining on our parade.
[Announcer] Look out.
And he's got another one.
We're thinking, "This guy is gonna
go away. He'll probably fizzle out
about 40, 45 home runs."
But the kid kept coming.
He just kept coming.
[Announcer] And that ties McGwire.
[Announcer 2] Yes, it does.
Before, it was Mark
McGwire, Ken Griffey.
But, you know, it's not how
you start, it's how you finish.
But I'll put Cubs-Cardinals
up against any rivalry
in Major League Baseball.
[Jennifer] When you play that many
games against one another,
when you're only about
a five-hour drive apart,
and when you're an
area of the country
that can be a little
bit territorial.
And the fact that Chicago
is bigger than St. Louis,
St. Louis has a little bit
of a chip on its shoulder.
St. Louis fans really
want the Cardinals to win.
But second to that, they
want the Cubs to lose.
I had kids in my grade
school that were Cub fans,
and it never made
any sense to me
because the Cardinals
were right here,
and the Cardinals
were good in the '80s.
But, for some reason,
either it was their parents,
bad parenting, or whatever,
they decided to become Cub fans,
and I just still to this
day kind of don't get it.
Go Cards, back to St. Louis.
[Announcer] From the Friendly Confines
of Wrigley Field in Chicago,
it's the Chicago Cubs against
the St. Louis Cardinals.
And once again Sammy
Sosa and Mark McGwire
will continue their
chase of Roger Maris.
I remember when McGwire
came to Wrigley Field.
It was crazy.
[Woman] I've been coming to
games for 10 years,
-and I have never-
Seen it this crowded.
The rivalry that existed already
was amplified 20 times more.
We've been waiting for this.
It's turned the city
back on to baseball.
It was madness.
Everything was different.
All of a sudden,
it was the race.
[Reporter] So, our top story today
is really the only story.
Even if there was another one,
it would be so dominated
by the duel in Wrigley
as to make it unmentionable.
So, let's go to
Clark and Addison.
[Announcer] So, Sammy gets a huge
And let's see if he
can take one out.
He missed by about three feet,
hitting the top of the wall
last time in the 3rd inning.
[Announcer 2] So, Sosa the batter.
He's one for 2, and he sends
a rocket deep toward left!
Back goes Mabry.
At the track, at the wall!
He's got it, number 48!
First one to 48! Sweet!
[Announcer] 48
home runs for Sosa.
He leads baseball in homers.
He leads baseball in RBIs now.
[Announcer] On a 3-1
pitch, Mark McGwire.
Swing! And there it is!
We have a tie game.
We have a tie for
the home run lead.
That is number 48 for Big Mac.
And everyone is happy now.
What a show, what a show
these two guys are putting on.
You just couldn't
write it any better.
Big Mac tied it in the 8th.
He's trying to untie it here.
Swing, and there it is!
Into center field,
did he get enough?
49! Cards lead, 7-6.
He hit it to dead,
straightaway center,
and there's a new
leader in the clubhouse.
[Announcer 4] And just like that,
Big Mac has reclaimed
the lead from Sammy Sosa.
His 48th and 49th have given
the Cardinals a one-run lead.
We're both having
fun playing the game.
That's it, you know?
I mean, he's having
just a fabulous year.
I mean, it's-- Even though
I'm on the other side,
and we're playing against him,
and I want to see our team win,
it's just, it's awesome to
see that kind of talent.
I believe that the pressure
that he have by that time,
because when you hit 40 or 45,
uh, the fans expect
for you to hit 60.
And if you don't perform that
night, 25 reporters was there,
"Why you don't hit
the home run today,
because Sosa was close behind?"
Yeah, all the
pressure was on me.
Yeah, yeah.
I'm sure there was pressure,
but it was like yeah,
the pressure was on me.
I know how tough
it is to get to 50,
but nobody ever talks about it.
Everybody wants to
talk about 61, 62.
I remember being swarmed.
I'd probably say
maybe 60 reporters,
like in a circle around me.
And I remember making the
comment and just in jest like,
"God, I feel like
a caged animal."
And I got hammered for that.
I know why the caged bird sings,
but I have no idea why the guy
who feels like a
caged animal in BP
because everybody and
their mom are looking on
hasn't hit a homer in his
last five games or 18 at bats.
For me, I enjoy. I enjoy.
I was, you know, the
new kid on the block.
I cannot be more happy.
But everybody is
different, you know that.
Sammy would interview
a ham sandwich
or let a ham sandwich
interview him.
He liked the attention.
Mark wanted to play baseball.
I remember one game
where he sat there,
and he just kind of looked
around the room and went,
"What are you gonna ask?
Like what's new to be asking me?"
And it wasn't an attitude.
It wasn't a negativity.
But it truly was, "What do
we have to say anymore?"
[Bernie] I saw a guy at times,
you know, really stressed out.
Wow, this is
starting to get him.
It's the mental pressure.
[Interviewer] When did the pressure start
building up on you, Roger?
Well, I think, Mel, when
I reached that 50 mark,
the pressure started coming in.
I don't think it was
so much the pressure
of playing the game of baseball
but answering the questions
of the press day after day,
so many fellas.
When the press
was coming at dad,
they were coming
from all angles.
They were coming in the showers.
They were coming
in the hallways.
They were coming to his locker.
They were coming to the dugout.
The pressure got to him.
He was losing his hair.
It was falling out in clumps.
Uh, he did not enjoy it.
How about the home
run situation, Roger?
You're seven games ahead
of Babe Ruth's record.
Uh, do you think that you can
beat the Babe's record?
[Rick Hummel] Ruth was a legendary
figure, bigger than life.
He was loved by everybody.
Maris was loved
by almost nobody.
And people did not want
him to break the record.
[Mike Shannon] And writers and TV
guys were coming up,
"How can you break this record?
You're gonna ruin baseball,
because of the great Babe Ruth."
And then, when he
took the day off,
they were saying, "How the
hell can you take a day off
when you got a chance to
break the greatest record in the game?"
And he said, "Weren't you the
same guys here yesterday?"
And so, he said to himself,
he said, "I'm damned if I do,
and I'm damned if I don't
so, I'm gonna go
ahead and do it."
[Announcer] Roger comes
through with his 61st homer
for a new baseball record.
It's a qualified
record, however.
[Rick Hummel] When Ruth had the
record, in 1927,
teams played 154 games.
They played 162 in
Maris' year of 1961.
That was the first year
they played that many games.
That was the first
year of expansion.
[Announcer] The baseball
commissioner has ruled
that Ruth's record stands
until someone hits 61 in
the same number of games.
[Jay Jaffe] Roger Maris didn't
get the acceptance
that he should have gotten.
There was always a resistance
to these old records falling
and these old legends falling
without ever, I think,
thinking about what those
legends were built upon.
[soft music]
[Roger Maris Jr.] Dad, he always said
with the 61 home runs
that he kind of wished
he never did it.
He always got labeled as a
one-year wonder after that.
That's-- You know, he had
the one good year.
But, you know, what
are you gonna do?
And, you know, he just dealt with the
hand that was given him.
[Man] Back up, guys. Back up.
Somebody's gonna get hurt!
-Back up, back up.
-Back up!
-Hey, Mark, Mark, Mark, Mark!
-One at a time!
-One at a time!
-Mark, Mark!
-Hey, hey, hey!
Yeah, at that time, Mark
couldn't go anywhere.
Uh, people wanted to see him.
People wanted to touch him.
People wanted to
get an autograph.
[Walt Jocketty] It was definitely
a difficult time,
and we had to be careful
um, on the road with him,
you know, people
trying to get to him.
It was certainly something
that we had never
had to deal with before.
[Man] Come on. Step back. Come on.
Everybody, please step back.
Step back.
I had two security guys
with me all the time.
You're doing the back exits
and the service elevators.
I used to joke with him like,
"Man, this must have been like
when Beatles were around,"
like hanging out with
the Beatles or something,
'cause, I mean, people
would swarm him.
And I understand why.
I get why.
But hard to live
your life that way
and then still go focus
and try to hit home runs.
[Walt Jocketty] Tony was able
to really understand
and help mentor
and counsel Mark in some things
that were pretty tough
to deal with sometimes.
When you know that every
at bat's being scrutinized
and then results afterwards
are gonna be analyzed
and discussed and either
praised or criticized.
Well, that's a
powerful distraction.
In a Major League clubhouse,
the lockers are all there.
The writers have
access to everything.
Steve Wilstein, from
the Associated Press,
noticed in McGwire's locker,
and, again, it's not like
this is hidden in the back.
This stuff is just
kind of right there.
And there's a bottle that
was labeled androstenedione.
[Reporter] The story
may be front-page news,
but for fans who came
to watch Mark McGwire
hit a home run today,
it is no big deal.
If it's legal, do it.
That's just smart.
That's not stupid.
[Reporter] Just this past week,
McGwire disclosed that
for more than a year
he used a legal
testosterone-producing strength booster
called androstenedione.
It is billed as a safe
alternative to steroids.
None of us knew what andro was.
Most of us couldn't
even pronounce it.
And we didn't know
what its impact was.
I remember asking him about it,
and he said he needed it because
he's had so many injuries,
and this helped him recover.
And like a lot of media
members, I took him at his word.
[Reporter] Talk about
some of the attention,
all the supplements
you take and such,
people are starting
to make a big deal
-about it a little bit.
Um, why do you do it?
How does it help you?
Why don't you worry about it?
Well, I don't worry about it
because it's legal stuff,
sold over the counter.
Anybody can go in
there and buy it.
There's absolutely
nothing wrong with it.
I really didn't know how
to really answer those questions
because it's like,
it was one of those things
that obviously turns out
to be not a cool thing to do.
And I actually asked
for the company
that I was with at the time
that offered me that stuff,
to, uh, back me up and help
me out and they declined.
So, I was like thrown
out to the wolves.
You know, but it wasn't
like I was the only guy
in the locker room that had
something in their locker.
[Reporter] The
performance booster
is one of a variety of
popular sports supplements,
which are loosely regulated.
Before this, there really wasn't
a whole lot of weight
training in baseball.
In fact, a lot of
people didn't think
it was good for you to bulk up.
You know, you'd get more injuries,
you know, more muscle pulls and all that.
But I remember the creatine
was really huge then.
Many of the men
putting up big numbers
and pulling down
enormous salaries
are using the muscle-building
diet supplement creatine.
Playing a lot of the day
games and night games, uh,
your body just doesn't have
enough time to bounce back.
You know, creatine training,
I think it's a big part
of being able to go out
there and play every day.
There were so many different
supplements back then.
I don't remember
people thinking,
"Wow, they're all on steroids."
It was all, "Wow, they're
all doing these supplements,
and they're, you know, working out
like crazy men now."
It's nothing that I'm
even remotely scared of.
I could take a
whole bottle a day,
and it wouldn't bother me.
There was this tradition.
There was precedent for players
taking some sort of substance
to improve their play.
Probably made people
a little more lenient
when it comes to
this new generation
of ways to improve
yourself chemically.
[Reporter] Baseball
Commissioner Bud Selig
and the players' union
chief, Donald Fehr,
also took on the media
coverage, calling it, quote,
"Inappropriate that such
reports should overshadow
the accomplishments of
players such as Mack McGwire."
Even after andro, for four
years, nobody talked about it.
It was just sort
of this thing that,
"Well, maybe it's in the
game, maybe it's not."
But nobody cared.
[Announcer] 3-2
pitch, there she goes!
No doubt about it!
He's got 50.
[Announcer 2] He wouldn't
answer Sammy's 50th
with his 53rd, would he?
-Yes, he would!
-[audience cheering]
[Announcer] There it goes.
That is his sixth
home run in five days.
[audience cheering]
[Announcer] Have
you ever seen a guy
take a curtain call on the road?
[Announcer 2] They're pounding
on the Cardinals' dugout
to get McGwire out
to wave at them.
Here he comes.
[audience cheering]
[Reporter] Whether the andro
causes Big Red's homers
to fly a little longer
might be open for debate.
Whether he will
indeed catch history
appears to be nearly
a closed subject.
[Announcer] McGwire stands in.
Here's the pitch.
There's a ball hit
to deep center.
Home run number
54, where are you?
Oh, my goodness!
And they're going
nuts in St. Louis.
My goodness!
[Reporter] Here's Junior
against Dave Burba.
[Paul Sullivan] At the beginning,
he kind of assumed
it would be Griffey
and McGwire all the way.
[Reporter] Griffey goes 0 for 3,
has only three home
runs in August.
And he has not
homered since Monday.
[audience cheering]
[Reporter 2] He has
just one home run now
in his last 20 games.
That covers 81 at bats.
[Reporter 3] Junior hasn't
homered in four straight games.
He's no longer chasing history.
Griffey was always speculated
as being the one that could do it.
You know, it just didn't
turn out that way.
[Announcer] We'd like
to welcome those of you
watching other
games on Fox today.
Sosa has crept back in it
with a home run last night.
But all eyes on McGwire
here this afternoon.
Three balls, two strikes.
He takes. Strike three called!
Inning over, and
McGwire has a word
or several for Sam Holbrook.
[audience booing]
[men shouting]
[Announcer] Calm down, Mark.
Calm down.
[Announcer 2] No way!
Who's been thrown?
Who's been thrown?
[audience booing]
[Announcer] There are 45,000
people here hoping,
praying it's not McGwire.
They want to see him get
a few more at bats today.
[Announcer] It was him.
I certainly thought
it was ball four.
I just got heated.
I got heated.
[audience booing]
So, my buddy's up in the stands,
and then all of a sudden,
this father and son come out,
and they just sit down,
and, and the son's like,
"Where's, where's
Mark McGwire going?"
And I was walking
across the field.
And his dad says, "Son,
he's got a time-out.
He's got a time-out."
[Joe Walsh] Cardinals at that point were
maybe a little over 500.
We knew we weren't gonna
challenge for the pennant.
So, people were
coming to see him.
And he throws him
out of the game!
Holy cats!
We had a sold-out house.
You know, 50 something
thousand people, they go nuts!
[audience booing]
[Announcer] Debris
raining from everywhere
here at Busch Stadium.
Harry Wendelstedt
is the crew chief.
He might be ordering
everyone off the field.
It might be a good
idea to do that.
They should have let him play.
That's why we're here.
That's why everybody's here.
I thought we were
gonna have a riot.
Here's a guy that's
chasing the record,
and he gets tossed
in the 1st inning.
Okay, now, is this gonna
adversely affect him?
How is this gonna affect
him the rest of the year,
you know, with Sammy
Sosa right on his tail?
[Announcer] Swung on, belted!
There she goes!
How far will that one fly?
Off the scoreboard!
Oh, baby, what a bomb!
[audience cheering]
[Announcer] He hit the scoreboard in left.
And he's just tied Mark McGwire
with number 54 on the year.
Oh, man!
I think there will be a 62nd
home run ball, and we've offered
a quarter
of a million dollars
to buy that ball from the fan.
[LaRussa] The ball that would
break the record
from any one of these guys,
I mean, I think it's
worth at least a million.
I think whoever gets the
ball might be able to retire.
Oh, man, it would be priceless.
[Man] I would just tear people
apart until it was mine.
[Reporter] You think it
could get violent up there,
people fighting for a ball?
I've seen people fight for less.
We've already decided that.
It's every man for himself.
I tell ya, I got my
dad here with me.
I'd push him out of
the way for a ball.
[upbeat music]
[Announcer] Here's the 1-0.
A high fly ball into center!
There goes number 55.
The magic number is seven!
And McGwire is back out
in front of Sosa, Mike.
Sosa goes deep, and
here it is again.
McGwire with an
answer with number 55.
[audience applauding and cheering]
[audience cheering]
[Announcer] Going back.
Here's number 55 for Sammy Sosa!
And somehow people
got word, whispers,
"Sammy hit another one."
And it became every day.
"Did he hit one?
Did McGwire hit one?"
More than 40,000 people are
expected to be here tonight
to see the Cardinals play
the last-place Marlins.
The Marlins at that time,
they weren't drawing
flies, you know?
They had cordoned off the
center-field upper deck
with blue tarps because
they weren't selling seats.
In the meantime, their whole
stadium is packed with people.
[Announcer] High fly ball!
Mark McGwire hits number 56.
Takes over the home run lead.
[Announcer 2] Pitch,
swing, and there it is!
There it is, number 57,
a new National League
home run champion.
-I can't stop, can't stop.
-How did it feel?
Best moment of my life, baby!
Mark McGwire, baby!
Can I get in front of a TV?
Can I see the news tonight?
Can I see what these guys did?
I used to videotape games.
It was such a big deal
to me that every day
I'd put in my tape, hoping
that I would catch the game
that Mark McGwire hit
his 62nd home run.
[Announcer] And
here's the 2-1 pitch.
Breaking ball, and he hammers
it to deep left field!
This one is gonna go
into the upper deck!
Another slice of history,
as Mark McGwire has
home run number 58.
He's tied Jimmie Foxx,
he's tied Hack Wilson
for the highest total in
National League history.
Like each of those
numbers mean something.
[Announcer] Here's the
pitch and there it goes!
Do you believe this?
Once again Mark
McGwire hits a home run
here in south Florida
to deep left field.
He pumps his fist into the air.
In consecutive at
bats, McGwire has 59.
He pulls to within
two of Roger Maris.
[Announcer 2] Looking for 60.
Has 59 home runs.
One on, one out, first
inning, no score.
And here we are on the
5th of September of 1998.
Will this be the day
that he catches Babe Ruth
or goes past Babe Ruth?
Here's the pitch.
Swing, and there it goes!
This is it.
It is a home run.
Wake up, Babe Ruth.
There's company coming.
It's Mark McGwire
with number 60,
and they're going berserk
here at Busch Stadium.
September 5, 1998,
home run number 60,
equaling Babe Ruth,
a historic moment
here at Busch Stadium.
What a thrill,
Mike, what a thrill.
[Woman] It was the ultimate
experience of my life.
I had chills everywhere.
I was on the bench,
jumping up and down.
I swear to God.
It was the best
thing I ever seen
in a ballgame in my life.
I've been going to ballgames
since I was like
seven years old,
and this is the best
thing I've ever seen.
Can't wait till tomorrow.
I drove 900 miles for this game, so...
[Reporter] What makes
tomorrow so exciting?
Oh, with Sosa here?
It's gonna be awesome.
[Reporter] The baseball gods,
with a sense of perfect timing,
have scheduled, long ago,
two games between the
St. Louis Cardinals
and the Chicago Cubs
for tomorrow and Tuesday.
Both men on the
field in St. Louis,
McGwire with 60, Sosa with 58,
head-to-head with
the record at stake.
What could be more perfect?
[Reporter] If you hit 62
when Sammy Sosa and the Cubs
are in town, what do you think
Sammy's reaction will be?
[audience laughing]
The United Nations should
have applied for a credential
because we had people from
every country showing up,
and there were some guys that didn't even
know anything about baseball.
But they felt that this
was such a phenomenon
that they needed to be there.
[Mike Bush] I'm trying
to think of anything
that even matches
what that was like.
I'm not even sure the
World Series matched that
in terms of interest around
the country, around the globe.
[Man] To have two guys
in the same stadium,
and I think the biggest thing for me
is that you have
two nice guys here.
I mean, you're not talking about
guys who have bad attitudes
that the fans can't get behind.
I think you have two guys
who care about people.
They've shown they
both care about kids.
They care about other people,
and I think that's the
important thing for me.
Lance, come on, man!
[Man] What's the matter?
Can't you guys spell?
-Yeah, he's coming with an S.
-Come on, Lance!
Come on, Lance!
-Here he comes.
I'll try and keep it short.
If you feel it's going
too long, just hit me.
I really feel for what
Roger went through,
for all the negative stuff
that was going on in his life,
and I wish it didn't happen.
Hopefully, the day
that I die, I can
after seeing the Lord,
I can go see him and Babe
Ruth and talk to them.
-Don't forget about me.
[Reporter] I'm sorry, Sammy.
[audience laughing]
I think you're a
little younger than me.
You might come a
couple years later.
If the press conference
is Mark by himself,
it'd have been painful.
The fact that he was
sharing it with Sammy
made it 180 degrees different.
Only they knew what
they were going through.
[Reporter] Would you
clear up one thing?
Which one of you is the man?
He's the man in United States.
I am the man in
Dominican Republic.
I mean, it's not like
we talked about it.
The times that we played
against each other
and we did these press
conferences together,
it was like we
were put in a cart,
and we were rushed
off to the media room.
We would answer questions,
and we'd just go back
to our own clubhouses
and play the game.
[horn honks]
-Don't forget me.
-Oh, yeah!
-[guys laughing]
-[horn honks]
No, I never really,
never really had a time
to really talk to
him about anything.
[audience cheering]
[Roger Maris, Jr.] Here you're invited
to St. Louis,
where it's a place where your
dad had two great seasons
to end his career.
We had great memories there.
Dad loved it there,
loved the fans there.
So, to go back there
was kind of interesting,
to think that here McGwire's
playing for the same ballclub
that your dad played for,
and now he's trying to
beat my dad's record.
I mean, that whole series,
when the Maris family was in town,
and Mark had his son here.
[audience cheering]
Before, when he hit 60,
I guess my mom and
my stepdad were like,
"All right, it's time to go."
And so, we flew
back to St. Louis,
and that's when it kind
of hit me to where like,
"Why would they pull
me out of school?"
and like, "I guess this
is a big deal," you know?
But even then, you know,
looking back to see
how big a deal it actually was,
compared to, you know, what I thought
it was like at that time,
is completely different.
[soft music]
[Announcer] And the
great fans in St. Louis
give Sammy Sosa
a standing ovation,
as much for what he's
done on the field
as for what he has
said off the field.
He has handled himself
with such incredible class
that the fans of St. Louis
owe him this kind reception.
He's got 58 homers on the year.
The pitch...
[audience cheering]
[Announcer] Here comes the man
of the moment, Mark McGwire.
Everybody on their feet.
McGwire's hit 60,
the same number
as Babe Ruth's highest
total in a single season.
Now he's shooting for 61,
trying to tie Roger Maris.
[audience applauding]
Two out, bases empty
for Mark McGwire.
Mike Morgan is the pitcher.
Here it comes to McGwire.
Look at there! Look at there!
Look at there!
McGwire's number 61!
McGwire's flight 61
headed for Planet Maris.
[audience cheering]
[Mark] 61st home run on my
father's 61st birthday.
I mean, that was incredible.
I mean, think about that.
That's just like the stars,
everything was aligned.
It's like, so maybe
they were right
in the beginning
of spring training in saying,
"Is this his year?"
[audience cheering]
There was a lot of magical
things that happened.
Nice going, big guy.
I remember talking about it
during our, our pitchers meeting
before the series even started,
and, yeah, there
was no way in hell
anybody on our staff
wanted to be that guy.
He hit 61 off of Mike Morgan.
And I was just like,
"Son of a..."
It's like, "Okay,
it's on tomorrow."
What could happen at Busch Stadium
tonight? Raise your hand
if you think you know the answer.
Yes, ma'am?
Mark McGwire can break
Roger Maris' record.
[Teacher] How many
of you are gonna be
watching the game tonight?
[upbeat music]
We couldn't stop talking about
Mark McGwire around here today.
He has been chasing history.
Tonight, he can make it.
And have we ever seen
anything like this?
The last time sports made
this country feel so good
was in the dead of
winter 18 years ago
when a bunch of college
kids beat the Soviets
and won an Olympic gold medal.
Mark McGwire is in the
middle of something
that is much larger than
Major League Baseball.
Some sports columnist the
other day made the point
that there is nothing in sports
that quite compares with
the home run in baseball.
It's the big bang.
It's the punctuation.
It's the Bambino.
It's the Sultan of Swat.
It's Mickey Mantle.
It's Willie Mays.
It's Hank Aaron.
It's Robert Redford
in "The Natural."
It's all those things.
[people chattering]
By that time, Mark had proven
that there was a
legitimate expectation
that he would do it
because he had been
so clutch so often.
If he was gonna do it, he
wanted to do it at home,
in front of the fans.
I sort of felt something
driving to that
ballpark that day,
but, you know, I mean, you
feel these, I don't know.
It's like, I don't
know, like a wave,
or something just goes
through your body.
It was like... It was sort of weird.
It was like, "Gosh, is it
really gonna happen today?"
Last game at home stand, um,
and nationally televised.
It's like that doesn't happen.
That doesn't happen!
If I'm lucky enough
tonight to do it,
it's for the best fans
in the game of baseball,
St. Louis fans.
Along those lines,
how special would it
be to do it tonight
with Sammy out in right field?
It would be... It would be incredible.
Like we were talking
about, it'd be storybook.
And, um, I mean, I have
the utmost respect
for this man right here.
And if it was, God
willing, happen tonight,
I'd almost want to run out
and give you a big hug
-out in the outfield. You know?
-I know.
'Cause if you were
in the same spot,
I'd do the same thing to you,
'cause when he said
he's doing this,
if he's in the spot,
and he could be, you know?
You don't know. He might hit three
or four tonight.
You have no idea what'll happen.
-Oh, yeah. I'm coming.
-I'd be the first one to do this and--
I'm coming.
I know you are. I know you are.
[audience cheering]
[organ fanfare music]
He would stand in that corner.
It would be right next to where I stand.
And he would be standing
there like this.
Looking, right?
And I'm watching
the game, but, you know,
increasingly I'm watching this guy
as he's getting
ready to go up there.
And you could just feel
the vibes of strength and focus.
All the cameras every time
there's a pitch thrown?
[imitates camera shutters clicking ]
He never saw any of it.
[audience cheering]
[Interviewer] What do you hear?
Uh, nothing except for myself
thinking and talking to myself.
There's just sort
of a roar, a humming sound.
I mean, I just went into depths
I didn't even know I had.
[Announcer] Well, everybody
has thrown this big party,
and here comes the man
of the hour, Mark McGwire,
who is 0 for 1 tonight, his
second at bat, here in the 4th.
[audience cheering]
[Steve Trachsel] I didn't want to change
the way I was gonna pitch.
My goal was to make him go
0 for three, 0 for four that game
and get us a W.
Definitely wasn't gonna try
to serve something up to him.
[audience cheering]
[Announcer] Matt McGwire looks on,
wondering if this is the at bat,
Tuesday, September 8th,
that Mark McGwire moves one
place in front of Roger Maris.
[Announcer] First pitch.
Rocket deep toward left!
He did it!
He did it!
He did it! He did it!
62! Touch first, Mark.
You are the new
single-season home run king.
Fourth inning,
same inning that Maris hit
his, bottom of the 4th.
I wish it would have
been one my longer ones,
but it happened to be, I think,
the shortest home run.
Hit it really hard, and I just,
well, I'm busting my butt,
thinking this is a double.
[Announcer] There it is! 62 folks!
It just got over
the left-field wall,
and we have a new
home run champion.
[upbeat music]
I make our call and I
think I said, "He did it,"
about nine times
and then shut up.
And I looked over in
the Cardinal booth,
and there's Jack Buck.
And tears are streaming
down his cheeks.
And that's when the enormity
of this moment hit me,
because generationally speaking,
here's a man who's given
his life to the St. Louis Cardinals
and saw a record broken
that many of us thought
would never, ever happen.
I'm there. Jack's there.
Joe Buck is there.
And all we had to
do is sit and watch.
And Jack Buck just stood
there and applauded,
like everybody else
in the ballpark.
That, to me, was the essence
of that home run chase.
[audience cheering]
[Sammy Sosa] Because I don't play
for the Cardinals,
for me to come from right field,
that was honor the king,
and I came down from right field
and show him
the respect that he deserve.
I wasn't too happy with it.
Look, this is our opponent.
We're trying to kick these
guys' asses and move on.
And, uh, obviously it was
great for baseball.
It was great for the fans.
I get all of that.
But when it happened,
I wasn't happy.
Well, it was special to me
because of my relationship
with Maris, okay?
My best friend in baseball.
[audience cheering]
[Announcer] Going over
to the Maris family.
Jumps into the seats.
Jumps into the seats
to put hugs on the Maris kids.
With Big Mac coming in
and doing what he did,
it was special to me.
You know, the Maris kids
and the Maris family
got their just due.
[Announcer] But I
don't think anything,
anything that ever
happened in this ballpark
compares with what
just occurred.
This game affords you, uh,
some unique opportunities,
and that was really a great one.
[audience cheering]
We knew that there was
gonna be a lot of confetti
that was gonna be shot
out onto the field
if Mark broke the record.
We stood on a concrete platform
that was right above the wall.
And so, you know, you could see perfect.
[Announcer] There's where it went,
in between the Ks
for the strikeouts
and the top of the wall in left field.
As it's traveling,
I jump off the wall,
and I see it go through.
And I'm like, "Holy
cow, there it is."
You know, and so, I just start to run.
I get it, and I stuff
it in my pocket.
When you see McGwire
touch home plate,
you'll see us come
busting out of the gate
to pick up confetti.
[Interviewer] So, you're
running around the field,
picking up confetti with the
number-62 ball in your pocket?
[Announcer] Ladies and gentlemen,
I want to bring a member
of the Cardinal ground crew
to the microphone
and to the stage.
And the reason why
is that Mr. Tim Forneris,
a member of the
Cardinal ground crew,
ended up with the
baseball that was hit
for home run number 62.
And he wants to present
it to Mark McGwire.
[audience cheering]
[Tim Forneris] I mean, I knew that being
a worth a million dollars
and things like that.
Yes, I knew that.
I had nothing to do with it.
You know, this ball just happened
to come, you know, close to me,
I got it, and, you know, I know
that he had worked hard
throughout his career.
Mr. McGwire,
I think I have something
that belongs to you.
[audience cheering and applauding]
Was there anybody else there?
Did you have to run
to get the ball before anybody else,
or was it fairly, uh, unencumbered?
-Well, yeah, there were four other guys...
...uh, that were there,
and one was my brother.
Um, unfortunately for him,
he's two years older,
and he's a little
chubbier, so, he didn't...
[audience laughing]
I was able to beat him out.
I was able to beat him out.
Put all your hats in here.
[Reporter] Is that
a Sosa autograph?
Matt got a Sosa-autographed
ball today.
-Does he have one of yours?
[Reporter] Does he
have one of yours?
Uh, it's what my
son asked for, so...
Next thing you know, I finish
with Bob Costas, and he says,
"The president would like
to talk to you," so...
[Reporter] And what did he say?
He said they watched it tonight.
He said, "America's
just enjoying it, and..."
And then I had my
son talk to him.
[Sammy Sosa] You know, he was real happy.
I went over there and said,
"Congratulations, you did it."
I said to him, "Maybe you
can go home now and relax
and, you know, take it easy
and wait from me."
[upbeat music]
[announcer speaking Spanish]
[announcer shouting in Spanish]
[Announcer] 59 home
runs, 142 driven in.
[Man] Today's game is sold out.
[audience cheering]
[Announcer] Sosa
with 59 home runs.
A drive and number 60!
[audience cheering]
[men chanting Sammy]
[Jim Riggleman] When we left St. Louis,
Mark had four more
homers than Sammy,
and we went home and
played Milwaukee,
and Sammy hit three real quick.
[Announcer] Swung and belted!
There it goes!
Number 61! Move over, Maris!
Sammy's hitting bombs that
are bouncing down the street,
and people are chasing
after the ball.
It got to the point where every time
he stepped in the box,
we just, we just expected
the ball to go sailing.
Sammy's in a zone.
Is Sammy gonna win this or Mark?
[Announcer] Look at those
folks, waiting for number 62.
The net's almost unfair.
The 2-1.
Swung on.
There she goes! Number 62!
Move over, Big Mac.
You got company.
[audience cheering]
[Sammy Sosa] The main focus for Mark
and I was to break the record.
Now it's not about the 62.
It's about who's finished
first and second.
I said, "Well, you
know, we just reach it.
Let me see if I
can finish first."
[Mark] Sammy reaches it,
and what if Sammy passes me,
he gets the record?
I'm not gonna allow
him to do that.
I'm, I'm gonna just do
everything I can.
All respect to Sammy,
but that was just, that was it.
It was like, "Wait a minute."
It's like, "Okay, I
enjoy being pushed,
but it's like I'm not allowing
him to finish on top."
[Announcer] Swing.
High fly ball to left.
63 coming up, folks.
[Announcer 2] Stay back, Mark McGwire,
you got company! 63!
Grand-slam home run!
[Announcer 3] Number 65!
The big man rolls.
[Announcer 4] Belted!
Line drive, center field.
He did it, number 65,
and there was no doubt about it!
[Announcer 5] He walked him,
and the bases are loaded.
[audience booing]
[Announcer] Not even close.
[Announcer 6] Swung on,
and there it goes!
Deep left field,
and can you say 66?
Sammy's got the home run lead.
[audience cheering]
66 was for me, incredible.
You know, I, I believed
that I had more chance
to hit a few more.
They had the TVs on
within the stadium,
and I'm out on the field,
and I want to say it might
have been the 3rd, 4th inning,
something like that.
[Announcer] Folks, you're
not going to believe
what Sammy Sosa
just did in Houston.
Sammy has just hit a home
run in the Astrodome.
And I heard this, "Oh!"
You know?
They put up his number.
They had the number,
my name and his number
up on the scoreboard.
[Announcer] They're changing
the number on the scoreboard.
He could have actually finished
the season with the record.
[Announcer] Here comes
the 1-1 delivery.
And McGwire swings and misses.
That puts him
in the hole, one and two.
[Announcer 2] Sammy Sosa
grounded out his next time up,
so he's one for three.
McGwire's chasing Sosa.
A high fly ball to left.
There is 66!
66, one for the road.
He ties Sosa.
[audience cheering]
They'll post that on the
board down in Houston.
[audience cheering]
[Reporter] Hitting
homers within 45 minutes
of one another Friday,
meaning both headed into
Saturday's action with 66.
[Announcer] They're
standing as Big Mac digs in.
Hermanson winds and fires.
McGwire swing, and there it is!
67 for the big man!
A smoker into the
left-field seats,
and he has regained the Major
League lead in home runs.
-[Announcer 2] You know what, Mike?
-67 home runs!
[Announcer] I think that's
gonna do it, myself.
[Announcer 2] I think he's
gonna hit some more.
And I wouldn't be surprised
if he hits another one today.
It's gonna be 68!
You got it, baby!
68! He has done it again.
He has done it again.
I told you.
I told you he's gonna hit
another one, Jack. Whoo!
-I never thought I'd-
[Announcer] Mike, I never
thought I'd ever, ever, ever
see anything like this.
He's demolishing the record.
-It's unreal.
[LaRussa] That night, Saturday
night, he is exhausted.
He says, "Tony, I'm done, man.
I, I can't play tomorrow.
You got to do me a favor.
Don't write me in there."
He said, "Man, I don't think I got
anything left for Sunday."
I said, uh,
"I don't care.
It has nothing to do with
whether Sammy's
gonna hit two or not.
I can't not write
you in there tomorrow
because after everything
that you've done,
the sacrifices, the
hardships, to pass on Sunday,
it would be the biggest
mistake of your life.
You'll regret it the rest of your life.
I can't do it.
All I can promise you
is that I'll watch you.
And if I feel like
you're about to collapse,
I'll protect you,
and I'll get you out of there.
But you wake up in the morning,
brother, and you got to go."
[Announcer] They're deep
for McGwire, straightaway.
The 1-0 delivery, McGwire.
Swing, and a foul
back, and my goodness.
Be careful, youngster.
Don't do that too often.
Here's another.
Swing, and a long one!
69 home runs!
The man is magnificent.
-[audience cheering]
[soft music]
He says, "Have I done enough?"
"Yeah, it's your last at bat.
Just go up there and take it."
[Announcer] Swing,
and get up, baby!
Get up! Get up! Get up!
Home run!
He's done it again!
70 home runs!
Take a ride on that for history.
They'll be shooting at that
one for years and years.
Comes by, he just winks.
I said, "I thought you
were too tired to wink."
[Announcer] 70!
70 home runs!
Oh, my goodness.
[Announcer] 70.
70 of anything is a lot.
[announcer laughing]
-These fans are going berserk here.
-[Announcer] They may never sit down.
Oh, my goodness.
[audience cheering]
[Interviewer] Do you think
you would have hit 70
if Sammy hadn't been
right behind you?
That's a great question.
I don't know.
But he definitely pushed me.
[audience cheering]
[Announcer] And the Giants are
down to their final strike.
Off the fists,
and Grace will take it!
The Cubs have won it!
And they will go
to the postseason!
[audience cheering]
[Reporter] Quite fitting
that this season ends...
-With you with 66 home runs.
The home run race is
now officially over.
You have 66 home runs.
Now you can look back.
How do you feel about 66?
But you have to know that
Mark McGwire is the man.
He is the king of home runs,
but they got to go through
me first to get to Mark.
Know that, Mark.
You are number one,
but I am number two.
I love you, and this
has been unbelievable.
We made it to the playoff,
and for us that was a victory.
You know, I got 66.
I was happy with that.
And I was MVP that
year so I'm good.
[Kerry Wood] A lot of the fans that we
lost in '94 from the strike,
we were still trying to
trickle those fans back,
and we lost some of the purists.
And what these guys
were able to do,
it wasn't just in St. Louis,
it wasn't just in Chicago.
These guys were traveling
all over the country playing
and selling out stadiums
all over the country.
In my opinion, that was
what brought the fans back
and what saved the
game of baseball.
[upbeat music]
[audience cheering]
[Reporter] Everybody has
become home run happy.
It's starting to get
me to look at baseball.
[Reporter] The
greatest stars of today
will look back at a season which
we will never, ever forget.
We went to Hollywood,
you know, meeting people,
people that I don't even know.
After '98, that's where
my life just changes.
I don't know if really
anybody says that you're
like the ambassador,
you represent the league,
but Major League Baseball
did come up with some
things for me to do.
[audience applauding and cheering]
-Seems like a great guy.
-Oh, unbelievable.
If you said to Sammy
at the beginning of the season,
"Guess what?
You're gonna hit 66 home runs."
-"Hot diggity!"
"And, oh, by the way,
you'll finish second, yeah."
-[audience laughing]
[Auctioneer] 150,000,
We're at $1,600,000,
and $1,700,000 is bid.
And now...
I was trying to tell
the lady on the phone,
"Put the paddle up.
Don't put it down.
Put the paddle up.
Don't put it down."
[Auctioneer] Sold to the
phone for $2,700,000.
[audience applauding]
[Reporter] In Chicago,
Sosa's iconic status
approached that
of Michael Jordan.
I've always said that
Michael Jordan is the man,
but I, I am right next to Michael.
-[audience cheering]
[Bill Clinton] In the
Dominican Republic,
Hillary helped
rededicate a hospital.
With her was someone else
who has been very important
to the relief efforts.
Sammy Sosa, you're a hero
in two countries tonight.
Thank you.
[audience cheering and applauding]
Sammy and I would just
look at each other and go,
"I can't believe
this is happening."
How often does something really
penetrate everything in society?
As an adult, what is the biggest
mistake that you've made,
and what lesson
did you learn from it?
As you may remember,
I was in the business
world at one time,
and I was the managing partner,
managing general partner
of the mighty Texas Rangers.
I signed off on that
wonderful transaction,
Sammy Sosa for Harold Baines.
The home run chase
of '98, generally speaking,
it was a feel-good
thing for baseball fans
not just in St.
Louis and Chicago
but throughout the country.
In retrospect, there was
a price to pay for it.
[engine humming]
[George Will] Baseball, it produces this
vast sediment of numbers
because it's a game
of discrete episodes,
ball one, ball two,
this inning, that inning,
this game, that game.
This enormous
sediment of numbers
that enables you to compare
Tris Speaker to Joe DiMaggio,
Babe Ruth to Reggie Jackson.
All of a sudden, you wondered
if you could still do that
because something had changed,
and we know what changed it.
It was chemistry.
[Announcer] Here comes Bonds.
Bonds hits it deep
to right field!
Way back! Is this the one?
There's a new record holder!
The single-season mark is 71!
Barry Bonds has the title!
[audience cheering]
[Reporter] The baseball world
has been rocked by information
given to federal investigators
and shared with the San
Francisco Chronicle.
Barry Bonds, Gary
Sheffield, and Jason Giambi,
three of the game's best,
are among half a dozen big leaguers
who received steroids and human
growth hormones from BALCO.
[Man] We want to
send the message out
to kids in particular
uh, that taking steroids
is dangerous, that it's illegal.
[Man 2] Players who
break the law and cheat
should be severely punished...
[Man 3] Understanding that this
is not the appropriate way
to bulk yourself up.
[Man 4] And their
records and statistics
from when they used steroids
should be wiped out.
[Man 5] Illegal
performance-enhancing drugs
have caused fans and observers
to question the
integrity of play
at the highest level
of our national game.
[Mark] Asking me or any other
player to answer questions
about who took steroids in
front of television cameras
will not solve the problem.
If a player answers no,
he simply will not be believed.
If he answers yes,
he risks public scorn
and endless government
"To be clear,
I have never taken illegal
performance-enhancing drugs."
[Bud Selig] Do I wish we had
reacted quicker?
Should we have?
Yes, one can make
a compelling case.
But as far as
responsibility, of course.
All of us have to
take responsibility,
starting with me.
There were a lot of players
back then, unfortunately,
that were using steroids.
And the most difficult
part of this era is,
we don't know everyone who was
or wasn't doing what
was rampant in the game,
quite obviously.
I mean, for the most
part, steroids then
were coming out of the gyms.
It was what guys did
in the off-season,
and they wanted to bulk up,
and they'd work with trainers,
and they would work with
guys who were weight lifters,
and those weight lifters
knew about these drugs
for a long time.
Your performance affects
everybody on your team.
So, if you're not doing
everything you can
to be the best player you can,
you're letting down everybody
else in that clubhouse.
And that's, I think, how
people looked at steroids
in the early days.
If you read what Bud Selig
has said about this era,
the commissioner,
he'll say he just wasn't aware
of the extent of the problem.
There were whispers.
There were murmurs.
He would bring it up
from time to time,
and there would just be silence.
Whether you believe
that or not, of course,
you know, it benefits him in hindsight
to say that that was the case,
but I think the incentives
at the time were,
"Hey, the game is bouncing back.
Don't rock the boat."
Huge news from Major
League Baseball.
Another blockbuster name
from that quote, survey,
testing in 2003.
Alex Rodriguez tested positive,
and now, according to
The New York Times,
so did Sammy Sosa.
The testing in 2003 was
said to be anonymous,
and with 104 players
testing positive,
it triggered a new
level of testing
in Major League Baseball.
Sosa has denied using
performance enhancers,
even doing so before
Congress in 2005.
[Interviewer] The current
owners of the Cubs
seem to want you to say
something about steroid use.
They want you to quote,
unquote, come clean.
But why do they worry about me
when pretty much everybody,
everybody, in that era did it?
[Interviewer] Why
are they specifically
-focusing on you, do you mean?
You know what I mean?
I mean...
I'm a very happy
person, my friend.
I'm good. I'm happy.
You know what I mean?
[Interviewer] Do you feel
like there's more pressure
put on you to say
something about this
than is put on other players?
I ask you once again,
in that list was
about 106 players.
It is about four or five,
maybe more than that,
in the Hall of Fame.
You figure it out.
So, I am the one to blame?
It never has been
proven, you know.
There's no smoking gun.
The only time that
he was, really,
that proof was
The New York Times story
about the leaked,
you know, voluntary drug test.
But even that one,
you know, we don't,
who's seen it except
The New York Times guy?
[Katie Couric] He was one
of the biggest stars
in baseball back in the '90s,
headed for the Hall of Fame.
Then came the steroid scandal,
and it has hung like a cloud
over Mark McGwire's head
for years while he
remained silent.
Then, today, in a
dramatic development,
McGwire came clean
and admitted he did use steroids.
First of all, I mean, let's,
yeah, I mean, stupid to do.
Uh, paid the consequences. Still do.
Um, but when there's...
There was no regulations
back in those days.
Nobody ever talked about
anything, like this was against,
there was no rules,
there was no regulation.
So, it was only brought
up to my attention
that it would help
through some injuries.
So, that's what-- That's really the basis.
By no means did I need to
do it for strength purposes.
Um, and I regret, you know, doing it.
I mean, the bottom line is
if there was drug
testing back then,
it would never happen.
That would have never happened.
And I don't encourage.
I don't want anybody ever to
follow any footsteps like that,
but, um, it just,
it just, it was a,
and it sort of sucked.
[somber music]
[Kerry Wood] Sammy did tremendous things
for the game of baseball in general,
but for Chicago baseball
and for this organization,
he did wonders.
But let's get some momentum
to get this patched up
and get them back together
because life's too short.
I don't want to see Sammy Sosa
drift off in people's memory
without seeing him come
back to Wrigley Field.
I hope someday that
they can make that work.
[Jay Jafee] I think that those two
have borne the brunt
uh, in a way that they
don't deserve.
The steroid problem
wasn't just a matter
of individual bad actors.
It was a complete
institutional failure
on the part of the owners,
the union, uh, the players,
to some extent the media.
I don't think you can
just say it's Mark McGwire
or Sammy Sosa's fault.
It's-- It's everybody's fault.
Baseball let this
thing get away,
and they never, they never
put rules in place
until after the fact, you know?
And it's like what good
does the blame game do?
To think we're gonna
go back into history
and figure out how
to assign blame,
who were the bad guys?
Who were innocent-- Who was innocent?
Who was cheated?
Who did the cheating?
Uh, this stuff was
flowing everywhere,
and it's because there was no
collectively bargained rule
between the players
and the owners that would ban it.
And I say there's a distinction
between criminality
or morality and authenticity.
There are plenty
of people in sports
who have done things
worse on a societal basis
than taking
performance-enhancing drugs.
And on the other hand,
some of those who took
performance-enhancing drugs
are among the nicest
people you'd ever meet.
So we're in a very murky area
if we try to say,
"Well, this guy did steroids,
and he's a bad human being."
Or "Well, so-and-so,
when I was a kid,
never would have
taken steroids."
How do you know?
They weren't available.
So, I don't make those
kind of moral judgments,
but I say flatly
and with complete assurance
that the statistics
and, in some cases, the records
of people who are known
juicers are inauthentic.
[Mark] I know 70 was in the realm.
I mean, did I think
70 was the number? No.
Man, the man upstairs
puts you on this Earth
for some reason,
and you figure it out throughout
your years of growing up.
And one thing is,
he gave me the ability
to hit a baseball a long ways.
And that's without launch angle
and all that other stuff.
I was born to hit home runs,
even though in a younger part
of my life, I wanted to pitch.
Um, so, I know inside that, that
very well could have been done.
He had this beautiful,
quick, natural swing. Um...
Steroids didn't create that.
Could he have hit 62?
Yeah, I think he
could have hit 62.
[soft music]
All right, guys, take care.
Good chance you didn't see that,
did you, till it was on you?
Yeah. I blinked,
and it was like...
Oh, my goodness.
[Mark] I believe I was put on this
Earth to hit home runs.
But I also believe I
was put on this Earth
to pass on knowledge.
That's where you got to
be ready, no matter what,
left-handed, every pitch.
Not many people,
and especially baseball players,
have been in the position
I was in, being on the top,
but I was also on the bottom.
To go all the way back
to my rookie year,
when I wasn't supposed
to make the club in '87,
and then through
all the years of,
especially the
downs in '91 and '93
and '94 with the injuries and...
It's like I really don't
think you can get to the top
unless you actually
scratch the bottom floor.
A lot of people say different
things, different opinions,
but I can say to you what Mark
and I did in '98 was incredible.
Doesn't matter if we're
never gonna make it
to the Hall of Fame, but it's okay.
I have a peace with God.
I'm happy. I'm great.
I got my family.
I got my granddaughter.
I'm good.
But I believe that, you know,
Mark and I in '98,
definitely we shocked the world,
and, you know,
I don't think something
like that's gonna happen again.
[audience cheering]
[Man] Cardinals Hall
of Famer Mark McGwire,
welcome to the club.
[audience cheering]
[Mike Claiborne] The game
has been good to him.
He was good to the game.
He put the game back on the map,
and, in return, the game
gave him another chance.
And it's worked out well.
What he does with
his life after this,
I don't know whether
it's gonna have anything
to do with baseball,
but I think the two can walk
down the street holding hands,
feeling good about
the contributions each other made.
I am standing here because
of all of you, Cardinal Nation.
[audience cheering]
To think, in 1997,
a Southern California kid
had no, no idea
he was gonna spend
the greatest four
and half years with you all.
[closing music]