The season began with Fernandomania and ended with a classic World Series matchup between the Dodgers and Yankees. Mike Schmidt slugged his way to a second consecutive MVP, and Nolan Ryan pitched another no-hitter.
But perhaps the best way to describe baseball in 1981 is by recounting Pete Rose’s pursuit of the National League’s career hits record. He tied the mark in June, then had to wait until August to break it — because a strike shut down the sport for about two months.
All Rose could do was make regular visits to the batting cage while he waited.
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