Baseball has long been a sport that is passed down from father to son. Playing catch in the back yard, going Little League games on the weekends, cheering on the local MLB team from your living room . . . I’ve seen my dad and brothers participate in all these activities for years. But for some families, the legacy spreads much farther. Below are five fathers who played in the MLB and watched their sons grow up to play in the MLB as well.
#5: Herm Doscher
John Henry “Herm” Doscher, Sr. played from 1872 to 1882, in the very early days of professional baseball. During his time in the National Association and National League, he played for five different teams, and he later became an umpire for the major leagues too. His son, Jack Doscher, became the first son of a major leaguer also to play in the majors.
#4: Felipe Alou
Felipe Alou was the first Dominican to play ball regularly in the major leagues. For him, baseball was a family affair, being brother to two other players and father to Moisés Alou, who was a six-time All Star and a World Series champion. As manager to the Montreal Expos, Felipe achieved more wins than any other manager in the Expos’ history.
#3: Ray Boone
Ray Boone was the first MLB player to watch not only his son (Bob) enter the major leagues but also two of his grandsons (Bret and Aaron). The Boone family was also the first to send three generations of players to the All-Star Game. After his thirteen years in the major leagues, Ray Boone spent three decades as a scout for the Red Sox.
#2: Cal Ripken, Sr.
Cal Ripken, Sr. is perhaps not as well known as his son, Cal Ripken, Jr., but he was a notable player, coach, and manager in his own right, spending thirty-six years working for the Baltimore Orioles organization. His son, Cal Jr., is best known as baseball’s “Iron Man,” having played 2,632 games in a row, and Cal Sr.’s younger son, Billy, was also a major leaguer for twelve years.
#1: Ken Griffey, Sr.
Ken Griffey, Sr. and Ken Griffey, Jr. were perhaps the best loved father/son pair in the major leagues. They became the first father and son to play professional baseball at the same time and played fifty-one baseball games together on the same team (the Seattle Mariners) before Ken, Sr. retired in 1991. Their most iconic moment came in September of 1990 when the pair hit back-to-back home runs, becoming the first and only father-son duo to do so
Do you have a favorite father/son professional baseball duo that we didn’t mention? Tell us about them in the comments below!