The Washington Nationals called up Victor Robles on Thursday, another big-name prospect coming to the big leagues. Robles is the Nats’ top prospect and the No. 4 overall prospect in the game, according to MLB Pipeline. But that’s just one part of the story.
He’s also now the youngest player in MLB. Robles is 20 years and 111 days old. Saying it this way makes you feel even older, though: He was born on May 19, 1997. So, like yesterday pretty much.
As Paul Swydan of The Hardball Times observed, this makes Robles the first major-league player who born after Notorious B.I.G. died. Now you really feel old, huh?
Victor Robles will be the first MLB player who was born after The Notorious B.I.G. died.
— Paul Swydan (@Swydan) September 7, 2017
That inspired us to dig back in the happening of 1997 for 10 things that are, surprisingly, older than baseball’s youngest player:
1. “Life After Death” by Notorious B.I.G.
We’ll start here because it’s most obvious. Biggie’s second album dropped March 25, a few weeks after his death on March 9.
2. “Austin Powers”
The first “Austin Powers” film came out on May 2, 1997, a cool two weeks before Robles came out of the womb. Feeling young yet? No, baby!
3. Pokemon on TV
Pokemon as a franchise debuted with video games in 1996, but its first TV iteration arrived on April 1, 1997 to Japanese TV. On the plus side, Robles has literally had his entire life to catch ’em all.
4. Mario Kart 64
Arguably the best game in the “Mario Kart” franchise — actually, wait, no, there’s no arguing; it’s the best — arrived in North America on Feb. 10, 1997. Who wants to play right now this very moment? Well, read the rest of the list first. But then me, you, Bowser’s Castle, let’s go.
5. “Wannabe” by The Spice Girls
The famous girl group’s first single launched on Jan. 7. So, yes, Robles has only ever existed in a world where The Spice Girls also existed. Sorry?
6. “Mmm Bop” by Hanson
While we’re on the subject of teeny-bopper pop music, “Mmm Bop” by Hanson came out a month and four days before Robles was born. While being the first baseball player who wasn’t born when Biggie was alive seems significant, being the first MLB player A.H. (after Hanson) also seems somewhat important.
7. AOL Instant Messenger
AOL launched AIM in May 1997. The only specific release date I could find on the web is May 1. Most references just say “May 1997.” Nonetheless, the buddy list existed before Victor Robles had actual buddies.
Perhaps the best of the early music-listening-to programs — I think I rolled with it for a good 10 years — Winamp was introduced to the web on April 21, 1997. Long live, Winamp!
9. “Chasing Amy”
Is it my Kevin Smith movie? Probably not. “Mallrats” forever. But Banky was a great character and it came out a month and a half before Robles did.
10. “King of the Hill”
It’s probably good that “King of the Hill” debuted on Jan. 12, 1997, because without Hank Hill, Victor Robles and the rest of us wouldn’t know nearly as much about propane.
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