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Mike Hessman sets International League home run record

By Matt Snyder | Baseball Writer

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Consider him the real-life Crash Davis.

Mike Hessman of the Toledo Mud Hens hit his record-setting 259th career International League home run Monday night in Indianapolis. The International League is one of the two MLB-affiliated Triple-A levels.

Here's the record-maker:

As the broadcaster alluded to in the video above, Hessman had been waiting on this one for a while. He hadn't homered since May 30.

"I was kind of banged up and went through a few injuries," Hessman said ( "The longer it took, it was just one of those things where I was trying to get healthy and back on the field, get out to play and finally I got it done."

Hessman, 36, has 404 career minor-league homers, 294 of which have come in Triple-A (he hit 35 in his one Pacific Coast League season in 2012).

Much like the immortal Crash Davis, Hessman has "been to the Show." He saw action in 109 games in five different seasons (Braves in 2003-04; Tigers in 2007-08 and Mets in 2010), hitting 14 homers.

The previous IL home run record-holder was Ollie Carnegie, who had held the record since 1945. Given his lack of name recognition these days, it's a safe bet Hessman won't become a household name himself.

Still, that's a pretty impressive professional career. Kudos to Mr. Hessman. After all, there are far worse fictional characters to whom to be compared than Mr. Crash Davis.

Hat-tip: Baseball Think Factory

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