Mark McGwire,

35, first-baseman for the St. Louis Cardinals, beat out Chicago Cub Sammy Sosa in a heated race to break Roger Maris's season home-run record (61). Though the good-natured Sosa also topped Maris, hitting 66 by season's end, McGwire held on to the “home run king” title, finishing with 70. The pair brought renewed interest to their sport and provided Americans with a welcomed diversion from news about the presidential sex scandal.

Susan McDougal,1998 People in the NewsMaster Sergeant Gene McKinney,