Johnny Bench recently celebrated a birthday. He turned 75 years old on December 7th. That means he was born in 1947.
Do you know who else was born in December 1947? December 26, 1947 to be exact.
I was made aware of this the other day and it did truly blow my mind. I think it's because I got to see Fisk play for a number of years, while Bench retired when I was just 2 years old. It's just hard for me to fathom them being born the same year, just a few weeks apart.
Even though Fisk retired 10 years after Bench, their career numbers aren't that far off. Bench began his career in 1967 and played continuously through 1983 (17 years). Fisk debuted in 1969, but did not spend any time in the majors in 1970. He would then play continuously from 1971 - 1993. (24 years) Bench played in 2,158 games compared to 2,499 games for Fisk. So even though Fisk played 7 more season than Bench, he had some years where he was limited due to injuries.
.267 career batting average .269 career batting average
2,048 career hits 2,356 career hits
389 career home runs 376 career home runs
1,376 career RBI 1330 career RBI
When you look at the career numbers and take into consideration how difficult the catcher position is, both careers are extremely impressive, but I give the nod to Bench for all the he was able to accomplish in "just" 17 seasons. How about you? Bench or Fisk?