Asked to admit his biggest mistake as an adult, George W. Bush picked baseball, not politics.
"I signed off on that wonderful transaction: Sammy Sosa for Harold Baines," the Texas governor said Friday night.The question came up during the GOP campaign debate in West Columbia, S.C. Bush reminded the audience of his days as managing general partner of the Texas Rangers and a trade with the Chicago White Sox.
Sosa was a 20-year-old rookie outfielder on July 29, 1989, when Texas traded him, shortstop Scott Fletcher and pitcher Wilson Alvarez to the White Sox for Baines and infielder Fred Manrique.
While Baines has enjoyed a productive career, Sosa -- subsequently traded to the Chicago Cubs in 1992 -- has blossomed into one of baseball's most popular players and a hero in his native Dominican Republic.
Sosa hit 66 home runs in 1998 during his chase with Mark McGwire to break Roger Maris' record of 61. Sosa, the 1998 NL MVP, hit 63 homers last season.