The sport that you play has a huge impact on how long of a professional career that you could potentially have, if you have the talent to make it to the top. Contact sports, such as American football, tend to result in shorter careers than non-contact sports, such as golf. Here are some of the athletes that are generally recognized as having the longest professional careers in their respective sports. A special thank you to Peter Deluca at Carter DeLuca Farrell & Schmidt LLP for this list.
Gary Player played in his first professional match in 1953, and didn’t play in his last professional tournament until 2009. His name is recognizable world-wide as a result of his accomplishments throughout his 56 year career as a professional golfer. But even Gary Player is unlikely to have had the longest career as a professional golfer, as there are many an unsung hero in the sport, that have spent their careers employed by a golf course teaching the sport to generations of new golfers.
Although officially Gordie Howe’s longest unbroken length of time playing professional ice hockey is “only” 37 years, a long stretch for any professional athlete, he deserves to be recognized as having one of the only professional careers that approaches Gary Player’s in length. He amassed a total of 50 years in his professional career.
One of the most recognized names in professional baseball is Nolan Ryan, who shares the honor of having the longest career in Major League Baseball with Cap Anson. The careers of both players stretched out 27 years. It is not uncommon for teams to have players whose careers have passed the 20 year mark.
Of course, it’s possible to find professional athletes that have had careers rivaling these three, particularly if you consider athletes playing sports that are not as popular in the United States, such as Cricket. However, all three of these athletes have names that are highly recognizable even years after their retirement, and they’ve been honored for their longevity by their respective sports.
To learn more about another player who played deep into his 40s, here is a video of 47 year-old Julio Franco hitting a home run!
Who are the best home run hitters in the history of baseball? The first name that comes to people’s minds is Babe Ruth. Millions of people that aren’t even baseball fans can give you that name. Then there is Hank Aaron and quite a few other names throughout history. Baseball fans also know that in modern times, the sport has seen even more powerful hitters that continue to try and rewrite the history books.
Just think about where Albert Pujols stands as he is continuing to finish up his career. Consider Alex Rodriguez and what his numbers were as he retired. Then you have people like Jim Edmonds that were known just as much for their skills on the field as they were for their skills at the plate. If you want a good full look at the best home run hitters in baseball, all you have to do is look at the 500 Home Runs Club.
That list is getting bigger and bigger, and of course when talking home run hitters in recent history, you have to throw in all of the talk about steroids. It seems that talk about steroids in relation to home runs is not much of a big deal anymore. Have you heard much about it in the last few years?
When Barry Bonds set the new career mark, that is what really got people talking for years. Then you have the single season home run record that became the big story back in 1998. You remember the whole McGwire and Sosa saga, don’t you? If you do, then you know that really fueled talks about steroids. With all that talk about steroids, it might seem like there are hundreds of players who have hit 500 or more home runs. Well, if you look at the list of the top 300 home run hitters, you end up seeing that #300 has barely hit over 200 home runs. Teams like the Kansas City Royals don’t even have hitters who hit 500 home runs.
Basketball is probably the most famous sport in the world. It is played in almost every country. Wherever you are around the world, people will always know this sport. Fans of all ages even cheer for their favorite teams from their homes as they get caught up in the intensity of the game. What most people do not know is the origin of this game. How did it become an official sport and where did the whole idea come from?
Basketball was created by Dr. James Naismith and he also managed to write down the details of how the famous game came to life before he passed away. Dr. Naismith was from a family of Scottish immigrants in Canada. He was a physical education teacher in YMCA International Training School.
One day, Dr. Naismith was given the task of creating a game that would keep track and field runners fit in the winter season. The challenge was that the game should be held or played indoors and must not cause injuries to the players. He was given two weeks to think of a good game that students will be allowed to play.
Dr. Naismith came up with a game that is inspired by “Duck on a Rock” which is a game that he used to play as a kid. Another inspiration for the creation of basketball is soccer. Because Dr. Naismith wants the game to also have a goal just like in soccer, he used peach baskets that were hung up on the wall. A soccer ball was first used for the game because it is safe for the players.
Since the inventor noticed how injuries often occur in the goal zone, he decided to put the peach baskets up the wall so no one would be injured while playing the game. The original baskets used for the first basketball game had no holes in the bottom so players were obligated to pause the game when the ball is shot in the basket
Understanding the history of a world-famous sport is very interesting. Unlike other sports, basketball is unique which might be the reason why a lot of people love it. Basketball fans around the world should also know the wonderful history of basketball.