Hank Aaron and MacGyver: MLB Legends and The TV Shows They Starred On

Andrew Martin
Apr 23, 2020 · 3 min read
MacGyver is just one hit television show that had a MLB legend as a guest star. (Photo via Flickr.com)

Some of the best players in baseball history have appeared on a variety popular shows

Baseball players are best known to fans for what they do on the field. They typically let their hitting, pitching and defense do their talking for them and can build long-lasting legacies because of that athletic ability. However, some also branched out into the world of Hollywood and have made a mark over the years by appearing in television shows and movies. Here are some of the best of those appearances by some of the greatest legends in baseball history.

Ty Cobb, Outfielder:

The Georgia Peach hit .366 (best all-time) during his 24-year Hall-of-Fame career. He was no stranger to performing off the baseball diamond, as he starred in a traveling stage play while still playing and even was the lead in a silent film that was produced following the 1916 season (sadly no footage exists). The best film footage of the star is an appearance he made in 1955 on the game show I’ve Got a Secret when he was nearly 70 years of age.

Satchel Paige, Pitcher:

The former right-handed pitcher was a natural showman, displaying his talent to entertain both on the mound and in front of wider audiences onscreen during his career. Between decades pitching in the Negro Leagues and six seasons in the majors, he was familiar to a wide swath of Americans, who had a number of opportunities to see him on television.

I’ve Got a Secret:

What’s My Line?:

Nolan Ryan, Pitcher:

The all-time strikeout king with the blazing fastball was a stereotypical stoic Texan of few words throughout his dominating career. That didn’t stop the right-hander from dabbling in the world of television, including a three-episode guest-starring stint he had in 1975 on the soap opera Ryan’s Hope.

Alan Trammell, Shortstop and Lou Whitaker, Second Baseman:

The legendary double play combo spent two decades together patrolling the middle of the infield for the Detroit Tigers. As it turns out, they also did stuff together off the field, including a 1983 episode of Magnum P.I., whose main character Magnum, played by Tom Selleck, often wore a Tigers cap.

Hank Aaron, Outfielder:

One of the greatest players to ever step on a diamond, Aaron has also been an in-demand actor over the years. He has appeared in Happy Days, The Incredible Ida Early, Mr. Belvedere and Touched by an Angel — always playing himself. However, he may have saved his best work for a 1987 appearance he made on the hit show MacGyver. Despite being in his 50s at the time, he still put on a show with a display of batting in the episode.

Wade Boggs, Third Baseman:

Boggs was one of the best hitters during the last half of the 20th Century, combining to hit .328 in 18 seasons. He also threw his hat in the television ring on multiple occasions. Although he may best be known in this regard for lending his voice and likeness to a 1992 episode of The Simpsons called Homer at the Bat, he was on the small screen much earlier, including a memorable episode of the sitcom Cheers in 1988.

Barry Bonds, Outfielder:

Love him or hate him, Bonds is baseball’s all-time home run leader with 762. With a reputation of being silent and standoffish, he never had the same level of marketing desirability other athletes of his caliber might expect to have. That’s not to say he didn’t have his moments, including an appearance in a 1994 episode of the popular Beverly Hills, 90210.

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Andrew Martin

Written by

Dabbler in history & writing. Master’s degree in baseball history. Passionate about diversity, culture, sports, investing and education.

SportsRaid

Original reporting and curated sports data journalism. Actively looking for additional writers.

Andrew Martin

Written by

Dabbler in history & writing. Master’s degree in baseball history. Passionate about diversity, culture, sports, investing and education.

SportsRaid

Original reporting and curated sports data journalism. Actively looking for additional writers.

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