Over the years, we’ve seen numerous fantastic MLB players hailing from Canada, such as Freddie Freeman, Russell Martin, and Eric Gagne. But who are the greatest of all time? Here’s our selection of the top four.
Former first baseman Justin Morneau was born in New Westminster, British Columbia, in 1981. Over the years, he played MLB for the Minnesota Twins, the Pittsburgh Pirates, the Colorado Rockies, and the Chicago White Sox. Despite a career fraught with injuries, Morneau was a four-time All-Star and gained many other accomplishments, including being named the Most Valuable Player of the American League in 2006, winning the Home Run Derby in 2008, and becoming a two-time Silver Slugger Award winner.
Morneau also represented his country at the World Baseball Classic in 2006, 2009, 2013, and 2017. The fifth edition of the World Baseball Classic was canceled in 2020, but it’s hoped to return in 2023. In the meantime, there’s plenty of home-turf baseball action happening, so make sure you stay updated with all the latest MLB news and sports betting odds.
Left-handed first baseman Joey Votto was born in Toronto in 1983. He has spent his entire career with the Cincinnati Reds since making his debut with the team in 2007.
Votto has racked up numerous accomplishments over the years. He’s won the Lou Marsh Trophy twice, he’s been an MLB All-Star six times, and he’s a seven-time receiver of the Tip O’Neill Award. Furthermore, he won the NL Hank Aaron Award and the National League MVP Award in 2010. Votto is also the first Canadian MLB player to hit 300 home runs since Larry Walker.
During his seventeen-year MLB career, right fielder Larry Walker became well-known for hitting for both power and average as well as his quick speed, throwing strength, and superb accuracy. Walker was born in 1966 and was raised in Greater Vancouver.
After signing with the Expos in 1984, Walker soon became their starring right fielder. Later, Walker played for the Colorado Rockies and the St. Louis Cardinals. Larry Walker has so many accomplishments and accolades to his name that it would be nearly impossible to list them all. But among his many accomplishments, highlights include: being recognized as the top Canadian athlete of 1998 with the Lou Marsh Trophy, becoming the only player in MLB history to register both thirty stolen bases and a .700 SLG in the same season, and becoming the first player in over sixty years to record a batting average of .360 over three consecutive seasons. In 2020, he was inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame. Walker went on to coach the Canadian national team, helping them to win gold medals in both 2011 and 2015 at the Pan American Games.
Born in Chatham, Ontario, in 1942, Ferguson Jenkins played Major League Baseball for the Philadelphia Phillies, the Texas Rangers, the Boston Red Sox, and the Chicago Cubs. The latter was where Jenkins spent the majority of his career. He played with the Cubs from 1965 to 1973. For three seasons, Fergie was a Cubs and National League All-Star, and in 1971, he became the first Canadian to win the Cy Young Award. For seven seasons, Jenkins was a twenty-game winner, which included six consecutive seasons with Chicago. Interestingly, he also played basketball for the Harlem Globetrotters during the baseball off-season between 1967 and 1969.
Over his career, Jenkins had 284 victories, which are still the most by a black pitcher in MLB history. And in 1991, he became the first Canadian to be inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame. In fact, he remained the only one until Larry Walker in 2020.