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Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa’s race for home run history deserves a deep rewind

You might remember where things ended, but what about how we got there in the first place?

Home runs! Dingers! Moon shots! That’s all the country could think about when Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa raced to break the single-season home run record in 1998.

Before entering that season, journalists predicted Roger Maris’ nearly four-decade record of 61 homers would finally fall thanks to the surge of power hitters in the league. McGwire and Seattle Mariner outfielder Ken Griffey Jr. were at the top of the list of candidates with a strong chance of putting themselves in the history books. Sammy Sosa wasn’t even in the conversation.

Although, once the season got into full swing (get it?), Sosa emerged with a run for the record books. The ‘98 season was a magical year where Major League Baseball re-captured the nation’s attention after losing interest following the league strike in 1995. Thanks to the beefy boys sending balls flying out of parks, baseball was back!

But to fully appreciate this moment in baseball history, we gotta rewind.