Ken Griffey, Jr.

Today in Performance Sneaker History: Ken Griffey Jr. Joins 50/20 Club in the Nike Air Griffey Max III

For a professional baseball player, hitting 50 home runs in a single season is quite an accomplishment. Even rarer is the elusive 50/20 club, which consists of players who have hit 50 homers and also stolen 20 bases in one season. Throughout MLB history, only four men have achieved the feat, making it a true mark of an elite offensive player.

On September 16, 1998, the Seattle Mariners met the Oakland Athletics in a road game. As the Mariners picked up a 4-1 victory, star outfielder Ken Griffey, Jr. became just the third player in history to reach the 50 home runs/20 steals club. In the eighth inning, as the game was winding down, Griffey stole second and entered rare territory. Before Griffey, only Willie Mays and Brady Anderson had been able to pull off the feat. Since then, Alex Rodriguez has also joined the 50/20 club.

Ken Griffey, Jr. is well-known for his on-field success during the ’90s and early 2000s, but he’s also equally famous for his line of signature Nike cleats and cross-trainers. Released to the public in trainer variations, the Griffey line has seen a resurgence in popularity thanks to Nike’s retro department. During ’98, Griffey was in his third official model, the Nike Air Griffey Max III, which has yet to be re-released in its original form.

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