Sunday is Father's Day, so Happy Father's Day to all you dads out there. Especially you baseball loving dads. I know I wouldn't be obsessed with this game without my father and grandfather. What better way for a father and son to bond than at a baseball game or by playing catch? It's the best.
In honor of the Father's Day holiday, let's look at the best father-son combinations in baseball history. There are many of them -- over 200, in fact -- but some clearly stand above the rest. Here are the five best father-son combinations in MLB history, with an honorable mention thrown in for good measure.
1. Bobby and Barry Bonds
By any objective measure, Barry Bonds was one of the most devastating hitters in baseball history. He is the all-time home run king with 762 homers, and he retired as a career .298/.444/.607 (182 OPS+) hitter. Barry won seven MVP awards and retired with +162.4 WAR, fourth most in history. Only Babe Ruth (+183.6), Cy Young (+168.4), and Walter Johnson (+165.6) are ahead of him.
Bobby had himself a fine career as well. As an outfielder with eight teams, mostly the Giants, he hit .268/.353/.471 (129 OPS+) with 332 career home runs in parts of 14 seasons from 1968-81. He was a two-time All-Star and three-time Gold Glove award winner. Bobby and Barry Bonds have combined for 1,094 home runs and +220.1 WAR in 4,834 games.
2. Ken Griffey Jr. and Sr.
Back in 1990, the Griffeys became the first father and son to play in an MLB game together when they suited up for the Mariners. A few weeks later, they hit back-to-back home runs. Check it out:
That is pretty darn cool. What a moment.
Ken Jr. was elected to the Hall of Fame this past offseason after retiring with 630 home runs, an MVP award, and 13 All-Star Game selections. Junior spent a decade as the best and most exciting player in the game.
Ken Sr. played 19 seasons from 1973-91, mostly with the Reds, and was a three-time All-Star. The Griffeys combined to appear in 2,768 games and hit 782 home runs. They finished with +118.0 WAR.
3. Sandy Alomar Sr. and Sandy Alomar Jr. and Roberto Alomar
Although he was a career .245/.290/.288 (69 OPS+) hitter, Sandy Sr. spent parts of 15 seasons in the big leagues and did go to an All-Star game. His oldest son, Sandy Jr., played 20 season from 1988-2007. He was a six-time All-Star and the 1990 AL Rookie of the Year.
Roberto, of course, is a Hall of Famer who retired as a career .300/.371/.443 (116 OPS+) hitter with 2,724 hits. He went to 12 All-Star Games and finished in the top six of the MVP voting four times. The Alomars combined for +91.1 WAR in 5,237 games.
4. Felipe and Moises Alou
Felipe is known for being the first Dominican-born manager in history, but he was a heck of a ballplayer too. With six teams from 1958-74, Alou hit .286 with 206 homers and was a three-time All-Star. He led the league in hits in both 1966 and 1968.
Moises played for seven teams from 1990-2008 and was a six-time All-Star with two top three finishes in the MVP voting. He had a reputation for being one of the best run-producers in baseball for a long time. The Alous combined to hit 538 homers with +81.9 WAR in 4,024 games.
5. Ray Boone, Bob Boone, Aaron and Bret Boone
The Boones are a three-generation baseball family. Ray was a two-time All-Star who played from 1948-60. He led the league with 116 RBI in 1955. His son Bob was a four-time All-Star and a seven-time Gold Glover. He played from 1972-90.
Bret was the first of Bob's children to reach MLB. He played with five teams from 1992-2005, most notably the Mariners. Bret was a three-time All-Star who finished third in the 2001 MVP voting, the year he swatted 37 home runs and led the league with 141 RBI. Aaron played with six teams from 1997-09. He went to one All-Star Game and hit one very memorable home run.
The four Boones combined for a ridiculous 6,569 games played in the big leagues. They finished with +89.2 WAR. How long until the first fourth generation Boone reaches the show?
Honorable Mention: Cecil and Prince Fielder.
The Fielders join Bobby and Barry Bonds as the only father-son combinations with 300 home runs each. Prince hit his 300th dinger last summer. He's a six-time All-Star with 316 homers to his name, and, of course, he's still an active player with the Rangers.
Cecil played 13 seasons total in MLB; he played from 1985-88, went to Japan for two years, then returned to play in the show from 1990-98. He was a three-time All-Star who twice finished second in the MVP voting. Cecil led MLB in homers three times (1990-91) and RBI three times (1990-92). The Fielders have hit 635 homers with +40.8 WAR and counting.
Among the other notable father-son combinations are the Ripkens (Cal Sr., Cal Jr. and Billy), the Gwynns (Tony Sr. and Jr.), the Berras (Yogi and Dale), the Sislers (George, Dave and Dick), the Stottlemyers (Mel Sr., Mel Jr. and Todd), and the three-generations of Bells (Gus, Buddy, David and Mike).
Clearly, the Bonds and Griffeys are head and shoulders above the rest of the pack. They been the best father-son combinations in history by no small margin.