Say Michael Jordan’s name, and basketball and shoes instantly come to mind. The NBA star loves baseball, however, and has a deep admiration for a lot of MLB players. Jordan recently told a group of kids about his favorite player. It came as no surprise, as this center fielder is one of the best baseball players of all time.
Michael Jordan knows a thing or two about baseball
Jordan is the most well-known player in NBA history. In 1994, he retired from the Chicago Bulls after a prosperous 14-year career. Not ready to sit out, he tried his hand at baseball, signing with the Birmingham Barons, the AA minor league affiliate team of the Chicago White Sox.
More than 10,000 fans and 150 reporters showed up for his first game. His baseball career was short-lived, however. Jordan played outfield for one season before trading in his cleats for a basketball once more.
Michael Jordan has a favorite baseball player
Even Jordan wants to “Be Like Mike,” aka the American League MVP baseball superstar Mike Trout. The outfielder has played nine years for the Los Angeles Angels , building a reputation for himself as one of the best MLB players.
According to Bleacher Report, Trout is considered one of the most dominant male athletes in sports history. Market Watch reported Mike Trout is one of the highest-paid athletes in the U.S., with a 12-year contract extension worth $426.5 million. Forbes claims this deal is the “richest in the history of team sports.”
Trout received a $20 million signing bonus and earns $3 million in endorsement deals with Body Armor, J&J Snack Foods, Rawlings, Topps, and Nike. Perhaps Jordan sees a little bit of himself in Trout, who has an estimated net worth of $630 million.
Mike Trout’s MLB career
In 2009, Trout was the Angels’ first-round draft pick. Since then, he’s been named the American League Rookie of the Year and awarded MVP three times. He has also played in eight All-Star games. Trout has a career average of .305 with 1324 hits, 752 RBI, and 285 home runs.
According to Baseball-Reference, he has a career WAR (wins above replacement) score of 72.5. By comparison, Ty Cobb achieved a 68.8 WAR score and Mickey Mantle had a WAR score of 67.9. This makes Trout’s score the highest in MLB history. He is truly one of the greatest players of all time.
The Jordan Brand
In 1984, Nike signed Jordan to a five-year contract worth $500,000 per year. Since then, he’s turned that deal into an empire spanning all sports. The Jordan Brand, a subsidiary of Nike, now offers lucrative deals to top-rated players.
Russell Westbrook, Kawhi Leonard, Chris Paul, and Maya Moore are among the most successful athletes to lace up a pair of signature Jordan shoes. In 2019, the Jordan Brand made a record $3.14 billion in revenue.
Signing Trout to the Jordan Brand
At the 20th Annual Michael Jordan Flight School Basketball Camp, Jordan fielded questions from attendees. When asked if he could add someone to Team Jordan from any sport, Jordan responded with Trout’s name. He said, “I absolutely love him. I wish I could hire him, but he’s a Nike guy, so I can’t steal Nike’s guys.”
Follow more updates from Sportscasting on our Facebook page.