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FROM SPORTS ILLUSTRATED
At 23, A's outfielder Rickey Henderson stole his 119th base to break Lou Brock's modern-day, single-season record, set in 1974. SI writer Ron Fimrite profiled Henderson, who would finish with 130 steals, a mark that still stands.
THERE may be faster men in the big leagues—Willie Wilson? Kirk Gibson? Tim Raines?—but none reaches maximum speed quicker than Henderson, who needs but two steps to do so, and none hits the base with such force. Henderson gives the appearance of gaining speed with his ferocious headfirst slides, which, were it not for the base itself, might carry him to or through the fences. "Henderson comes in belly-first, bent on busting right through you," California manager Gene Mauch says. "Most runners who dive want to touch the base with their hands. Rickey wants to slide through and let his belly stop him on the base."
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