Don Mattingly

Today in Performance Sneaker History: Don Mattingly Hits 200th Home Run in Vintage Nikes

Los Angeles Dodgers manager Don Mattingly wasn’t always behind the scenes. In fact, during his 14-year career with the New York Yankees, Mattingly was a six-time MLB All-Star and nine-time Golden Glove Award recipient. Mattingly was drafted by the Yankees in 1982, and quickly became known for his hitting and defensive prowess.

In 1985, he won the American League’s MVP award with a .324 batting average, 35 homers, 48 doubles, and 145 RBIs. Later, in ’87, “The Hitman” set a record for hitting the most grand slams in a single season with six. That record stood for nearly 20 years before it was tied by Travis Hafner in 2006.

On July 22, 1993, Mattingly’s success continued as he knocked his 200th home run out of the park in a 12-1 thrashing of the California Angels. Finishing his career with 222 total HRs, Mattingly’s total didn’t break any records, but his reputation for consistent hitting and an all-around solid game has earned him Hall of Fame considerations on numerous occasions.

During the ’80s, Mattingly was known for wearing Converse on the diamond, and was featured in a “Hit Man” ad campaign that probably wouldn’t go over too well in today’s environment. Later on, Mattingly switched to the Swoosh, wearing Nike cleats throughout the remainder of his career. This vintage leather style is reminiscent of other Nike cleats from the era, including the pair worn by Bo Jackson as he hit an unforgettable All-Star Game homer.

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