Mark Madden

Mark Madden

The Super Genius of Pittsburgh Sports.Full Bio



Barry Bonds doesn't seem like the happiest person in the world.

The happiest I ever saw Bonds was when he was talking about his godfather, Willie Mays, on an HBO documentary. All smiles.

Mays did that to people.

Mays passed away Tuesday. He was 93.

Mays might have been the greatest baseball player of all time. He did more things better.

Baseball's five tools are hit, hit for power, run, throw, field. Mays did each of those at an overwhelming level.

Ted Williams, for example, hit better. He was comparable in terms of power. But Mays dwarfed him in the other three categories.

Mays was way better than Shohei Ohtani is. No comparison.

Mays' numbers were amazing.

But you had to see Mays play. He had a certain majesty. Like Roberto Clemente.

I saw Mays play. Clemente, too. I was lucky.

Mays hit 660 home runs, sixth all-time. He had 3,293 hits. He stole 339 bases. He won 12 Gold Gloves. He got two National League MVPs. He helped the New York Giants win the 1954 World Series.

Mays had his signature moment in that World Series, making a catch over his shoulder while running at full speed with his back to home plate to rob Cleveland's Vic Wertz of extra bases.

It might have been the greatest catch ever.

But Mays did things like that all the time.

Willie Mays, RIP. Say hey!

Willie Mays And The World Series Trophy Visit New York City

Photo: Michael Nagle / Getty Images Sport / Getty Images

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